• Kickoff Rule Changes will be in NCAA Football 13

    The NCAA Playing Oversight Panel has approved new rules regarding kickoffs and touchbacks that - thanks to the NCAA Football dev team - The Gaming Tailgate can confirm will be in NCAA Football 13. "Our guys are already on it and these changes will be in NCAA 13," said NCAA Football producer Ben Haumiller in a statement via e-mail.

    The Playing Rules Oversight Panel (PROP) during its conference call on Tuesday approved moving the kickoff and touchback lines beginning with the 2012 football season.

    Next fall, teams will kick off at the 35-yard line instead of the 30. Also, touchbacks on free kicks will be moved to the 25-yard line instead of the 20 to encourage more touchbacks. Touchbacks on other plays (for example, punts that go into the end zone, or fumbles that go out of the end zone) will remain at the 20-yard line.

    The recommended changes came from the Football Rules Committee after that group examined NCAA data showing that injuries during kickoffs occur more often than in other phases of the game.
    (Click here for the full release.)

    Let us know how you think this rule change will alter special teams and field position in NCAA Football as well as in real-life action.
    Comments 19 Comments
    1. JeffHCross's Avatar
      JeffHCross -
      I don't know quite how this will affect NCAA, but I think this is going to have an unintended consequence for college football. The idea is to encourage more teams to take touchbacks, while giving the kicking team less room to build speed. However, I think what will happen is that kickers will heavily practice placing the ball between the goalline and the 5, and you'll see the number of touchbacks actually decrease as a result.

      For "competitive online" (), I could see this happening. I don't think it will have much impact on NCAA overall though.
    1. steelerfan's Avatar
      steelerfan -
      I don't know, Jeff. The NFL made the change, and we certainly didn't see a decrease in touchbacks or kickers trying to place the ball inside the 5.

      Of course, they're giving the ball at the 20, not the 25.

      Should be interesting.

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    1. SmoothPancakes's Avatar
      SmoothPancakes -
      In response to the NCAA... May as well just get rid of the kickoffs altogether and automatically start every offensive series at the 25 yard line.
    1. Bohica1010's Avatar
      Bohica1010 -
      What they need to do is allow any kickoff that goes out of bounds within the 20 yard line to be considered the same as a punt. Giving teams the ability to pin a team deep without having to worry about touchbacks or trying to drop it on the 5 yard line. A kick off outside the 20 would still be a penalty. Might as well have kickers earn some of their scholarships!
    1. JeffHCross's Avatar
      JeffHCross -
      Quote Originally Posted by steelerfan View Post
      I don't know, Jeff. The NFL made the change, and we certainly didn't see a decrease in touchbacks or kickers trying to place the ball inside the 5.

      Of course, they're giving the ball at the 20, not the 25.
      The two may offset, you're right. In the NFL this season, touchbacks were actually up (and strangely enough, so were TDs). And you may end up finding that the benefit to forcing a team to return the kick isn't worth the time devoted in practice. So maybe I should have said "what may happen" or "could happen".

      But you're right, it's definitely interesting.

      One thing I'm forgetting is that the "average" kickoff return is actually above 20 yards. So unless you know you can put it on the 1 every time, you might just be better off booming it out of the end zone and taking it at the 25, and not even worrying about the kick.
      Quote Originally Posted by Bohica1010 View Post
      Might as well have kickers earn some of their scholarships!
      I'm pretty sure having the accuracy to kick just in front of the goalline is a much more difficult thing than asking them to try to kick out of bounds inside the 20. You make that rule and every kickoff is going out of bounds. Every one of them.
    1. Original1990's Avatar
      Original1990 -
      I doubt that most people won't take the Touchback. But since there are changes to the kickoff for rules, why isn't there a penalty for Late hits?
    1. JeffHCross's Avatar
      JeffHCross -
      Quote Originally Posted by Original1990 View Post
      why isn't there a penalty for Late hits?
      Late hits?
    1. baseballplyrmvp's Avatar
      baseballplyrmvp -
      Quote Originally Posted by JeffHCross View Post
      Late hits?
      think he's referring to late hit out of bounds.
    1. Jayrah's Avatar
      Jayrah -
      Quote Originally Posted by JeffHCross View Post
      Late hits?
      He's saying why no addressing of late hits in game when their taking the time to address other penalties and rule changes in game..
    1. JeffHCross's Avatar
      JeffHCross -
      I wasn't aware it was really possible to do late hits ... so I'm still not quite following.
    1. cdj's Avatar
      cdj -
      With both the NFL and NCAA focusing on player safety (the new kickoff rules as a prime example), neither organization may want late hits in their respective licensed game. The NFL nixed late hits in the arcade NFL Blitz for that reason and it wouldn't surprise me if the NCAA is the same way.
    1. jaymo76's Avatar
      jaymo76 -
      I'm glad the rules will be updated for NCAA 13, but personally I love the return game in college football and if it becomes touchback central, much like the NFL now is, that will truly take away from the enjoyment of the game.
    1. baseballplyrmvp's Avatar
      baseballplyrmvp -
      Quote Originally Posted by cdj View Post
      With both the NFL and NCAA focusing on player safety (the new kickoff rules as a prime example), neither organization may want late hits in their respective licensed game. The NFL nixed late hits in the arcade NFL Blitz for that reason and it wouldn't surprise me if the NCAA is the same way.
      i understand that neither organization might want/allow ea to put them in the game, but then why does ea allow a ballcarrier to still be tackled, even after said ballcarrier has already stepped out of bounds? i totally get the reason why the ncaa/nfl doesnt want the targetting penalties, leading with the helmet, etc....but then, imo, ea has to do something to not allow the virtual players to ever get into those situations.

      this also applies to ncaa where players are penalized for hitting a defenseless player (ie: USC's safety TJ McDonald hitting Stanford's wr Chris Owusu). you can do this practically all game long in ncaa, controlling a lb and timing the hit just right against a wr. again, i understand the reasoning for the ncaa not wanting it, its just ea has to do something to its game to not allow those virtual players to ever get in those situations. allowing those situations to happen, and then not having any penalty resulting, just isnt acceptable, imo.
    1. Bohica1010's Avatar
      Bohica1010 -
      Quote Originally Posted by JeffHCross View Post
      I'm pretty sure having the accuracy to kick just in front of the goalline is a much more difficult thing than asking them to try to kick out of bounds inside the 20. You make that rule and every kickoff is going out of bounds. Every one of them.
      The point I was making was more to the thought of them trying to save injuries with the touchbacks. Any ball, regardless of how good the kicker is that only goes to the 1 yard line is going to be returned. When you move the TB to the 25, most teams will let it bounce through, it's not like dropping a punt. So instead of giving the recieving team the free yards, kicking off out of bounds within the 20 gives the kicking team a fairer chance at not giving the opposition the ball with only 3/4 of the field left. And you do the same thing the TB is supposed to do, less injuries from returns. It isn't fair to the kicking team that in order to prevent injuries the returning team gets the ball at the 25 with a TB or my kicker puts it on the 3 and they return it the average of 23 to the 26. The kicking team should get something that evens the board.
    1. morsdraconis's Avatar
      morsdraconis -
      It's going to be exactly the way the NFL does it now. Kickers are going to put more air under the ball and drop it at 3 yards deep in the endzone to 3 yards out of the endzone and force them to return it instead of taking the knee so that they can try to trap them down inside the 20.

      The Redskins nearly perfected it (giving us one of the best return yards allowed in the league last year).
    1. Jayrah's Avatar
      Jayrah -
      Quote Originally Posted by morsdraconis View Post
      It's going to be exactly the way the NFL does it now. Kickers are going to put more air under the ball and drop it at 3 yards deep in the endzone to 3 yards out of the endzone and force them to return it instead of taking the knee so that they can try to trap them down inside the 20.

      The Redskins nearly perfected it (giving us one of the best return yards allowed in the league last year).
      Except 3 yards deep and the returner should now just take a knee. Ball at the 25.

      I personally hate that the ncaa says late hits can't be construed in the game. HATE IT. I understand why targeting is not in the game, but late hits are as much a part of the game as face masks and roughing the passer. I don't want to have guys get annihalated or blatently crush someone in the field of play after a runner is down, but a late hit because you chose a bad angle on the sideline and didn't pull up is not a bad thing. As a matter of fact, I would argue that it's a good thing. If anything it promotes being smarter around the sideline and understanding the boundries of the playing field.
    1. Deuce's Avatar
      Deuce -
      I have to say...I don't understand the whole late hit thing. Isn't roughing the passer a late hit? ...and that's in the game.


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    1. JeffHCross's Avatar
      JeffHCross -
      Quote Originally Posted by Bohica1010 View Post
      The point I was making was more to the thought of them trying to save injuries with the touchbacks. Any ball, regardless of how good the kicker is that only goes to the 1 yard line is going to be returned. When you move the TB to the 25, most teams will let it bounce through
      Eh ... I dunno about that. Letting a kickoff bounce is very dangerous.

      But my point was that you can guarantee that every team would kick the ball out of bounds if that rule was made. A kicker can certainly kick the ball out of bounds, reliably, between the goalline and the 20. If you're going to do that, you might as well eliminate the kickoff (which, actually, a lot of people have named as an option).
    1. Bohica1010's Avatar
      Bohica1010 -
      Quote Originally Posted by JeffHCross View Post
      Eh ... I dunno about that. Letting a kickoff bounce is very dangerous.

      But my point was that you can guarantee that every team would kick the ball out of bounds if that rule was made. A kicker can certainly kick the ball out of bounds, reliably, between the goalline and the 20. If you're going to do that, you might as well eliminate the kickoff (which, actually, a lot of people have named as an option).
      I agree that I think most teams would then try to kickoff out of bounds between the goal line and the 20, however I think you are giving most college kickers way to much credit for accuracy and consistency. I would say that maybe 20 out of the 120+ college kickers could accurately and consistently, kick after kick, hit that 20 yard stretch from the kickoff angle. Outside of that, most coaches won't risk the normal kicking out of bounds penalty for anything before the 20 with a bad kicker. The only way to really use it effectively at that point is have your kicker aim for the back corner of the EZ and if he manages to shank it a little bit, they could get lucky and have it go out in the limited area. Otherwise, they are safe and it is just a touchback. Same goes for trying to put some air under the ball in order to try to drop it on the 3, most kickers aren't going to be that good off the tee. My stepson was a high school kicker and I went to all the kicking camps where they showed technique and touch as well as having the top kickers come in to show off. It isn't something every kicker can do.