Starting this season, the clock is ticking once a ball is kicked or immediately after a change of possession in Division I football, small steps to ensure Steve Trachsel doesn’t characterize collegiate gridiron as “slow”, along with appeasing the broadcast partners, no doubt. The Detroit News’ John Niyo responds with “Give Us Our Game Back”.
Less is more. That’s a mantra that makes sense in these trying economic times.
But more of less? Well, I just don’t get it.
Neither do a lot of Division I football coaches, some of whom probably went home Saturday night, lined the kids up in the I-formation in the living room, and had them run a few play-action passes to the family dog.
Likewise, there were quite a few third-string running backs who went to dinner with their folks after the home opener with a lot less to talk about.
“I would’ve liked to have played some more guys there at the end,” Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said Saturday after a 27-7 victory over Vanderbilt. “But one of the things you may have noticed was how quickly the game went. We’re going to get out of the stadium a lot quicker than we’ve been accustomed to this year.”
Michigan games averaged 145 total plays last season; Saturday’s opener featured only 125.
And while U-M fans may not have missed those 20 extra plays the way Carr did, they might be asking for them back in a couple of weeks in South Bend, don’t you think?
Earlier in the week, Carr called the switch “one of the most significant rule changes in the last 50 years.” Others weren’t so diplomatic. Oregon coach Mike Bellotti said he was “appalled” by the new rules. Notre Dame’s Charlie Weis called them “comical.” ”
The best part about college football, for many fans, is that it’s not like the NFL, where there’s fewer plays, less scoring and more Cialis ads than any male — functional or otherwise — should be subjected to.
Look, college football, with all its glorious, pigskin pageantry, is supposed to be an all-day affair, isn’t it?
That’s why the games are played Saturday afternoons — or at least why they used to be, before everyone and Maurice Clarett’s mother started trying to make a buck off them.