There was some sneaky important college football news released on Friday as the clock rules will change and Big 12 realignment isn’t off the table.
There is no offseason when it comes to college football. That’s becoming true of every sport, but with the recruiting calendar and all the other stuff that happens, there really is no offseason.
We learned that again on Friday as some important college football news came to light. For one, the powers that be in the sport have been talking about over some proposed rule changes that work to shorten the game and those have now been approved.
The NCAA college football rules committee on Friday announced that it had approved some changes to the clock which will include no un-timed downs at the end of the first and third quarter, a ban on using consecutive timeouts, and, the biggest change, is that the clock will no longer stop at all after first downs, except in the final two minutes of each half.
It will have an impact on college football games and will make them shorter. The rules will be much more like the NFL, yet I don’t see it having the drastic impact some people are saying. The games don’t need to last four hours and limiting plays is good for player safety too.
So let’s applaud as something got done right in college football for once. The rules are expected to get final approval in April.
College football realignment alive in the Big 12?
In another interesting bit of college football news, CBS sports confirmed that the Big 12 conference has been in contact with Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, and Utah about joining the Big 12 conference.
According to Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports, the interest in the four “corner schools” leaving the Pac-12 conference has picked up in recent weeks. The conference has been undergoing TV contract negotiations and it doesn’t seem to get going all that well.
In terms of geography and rivalries, the merger would make sense for both sides. Arizona and Arizona State would stay together, plus Utah and BYU would be reunited as conference rivals which would be a good thing for college football.
Colorado would also keep some of its natural rivals and also get some back from its days in the Big 8 such as Oklahoma State, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, and Iowa State which were all opponents for the Buffaloes back in the day along with Texas Tech and Baylor in the Big 12.
Texas and Oklahoma would be leaving, so the Big 12 will drop to 12 teams if there isn’t expansion. The addition of Arizona State, Arizona, Colorado, and Utah would allow the Big 12 to have 16 teams to match the Big Ten and the SEC.
It would be another disaster for the Pac-12 as the league tries to hold on. USC and UCLA are leaving for the Big Ten, which will leave the league with 10 teams. A number of expansion possibilities have been discussed such as Boise State, San Diego State, Fresno State, etc, but none of those are really going to move the needle.
The reality is that the four corner schools won’t really move the needle for the Big 12 in terms of TV deals and such, but it will strengthen the overall product, and with the 12-team playoff coming after just one more season, a deep conference could mean playoff access.
We’ll see what happens but this is something to continue to monitor.