You've heard the furor all season about the NCAA's rules changes
designed to speed up the game.
Coaches have taken every opportunity to take shots at the changes.
They're losing precious possessions and plays. It can make the
difference between winning and losing.
By now you're probably familiar with the most significant changes. The
clock starts on kickoffs rather than when the receiving team touches
the ball. After a change in possession, the clock restarts as soon as
the ball is marked ready for play rather than on the ensuing snap.
The changes have had the desired effect: Games have been 10-15 minutes
shorter in most conferences. But that has not pacified the guys wearing
the headsets. Games also have seen a drop of 10-16 plays, or from five
to eight plays per team.
This week's Amazing Stats delves into the effects of the rules changes
to try and give you a better idea of what's happening. And we'll
include some other numbers just for fun. Away we go:
Fewer number of plays being run per team this season
of Clemson touchdown drives this season that have taken six or fewer
Clemson RB James Davis.
number of offensive plays being run per team in the Mountain West
Conference, the league most affected by the rule change
number of offensive plays being run per team in the Southeastern
Conference, the league least affected by the rule change
Michigan RB Mike Hart.
Fewer number of offensive plays being run per game by
yards per game the rules changes, in theory, are costing
Wolverines running back Mike Hart. He carries on 39 percent of
Michigan's offensive plays, thus losing about 3.5 carries per game
Touchdown receptions by Indiana sophomore wide receiver
James Hardy in his past three games
receptions by Auburn wide receivers all season
Indiana WR James Hardy.
Michigan State coach John L.
Points scored in the first half by Michigan State's past
scored in the first half of those four games by the Spartans
Spartans head coaches who will depart after the season