Skip to main content

NCAA recommends three rules changes for 2017

The NCAA's Football Rules Committee on Friday recommended three rules changes to conclude its annual meetings.

First, the committee recommended defensive players no longer be allowed to leap over offensive linemen on field goals and PATs. Presently, this is a legal move so long as the leaping player does not land on an offensive player.

The committee also recommended a requirement that all players wear knee pads and pants that cover the knee.

The committee's final proposal recommended that the nameplate area be included in the horse collar rule, restricting that area from use in making tackles.

"Our committee’s most significant charge is to enhance the health and safety of our student-athletes when possible," South Dakota head coach and committee chairman Bob Nielson said in a statement. "Each of these rules changes address areas that help us accomplish this goal."

The committee decided not to touch the targeting rule. One proposal would flip the burden of proof for ejecting players from the replay official to the on-field official who made the call.

Since this is an off year for rules changes, only alterations that would affect player safety are eligible for consideration. The proposals will be forwarded to the Playing Rules Oversight Panel, which will discuss the recommendations at its annual meeting on April 19.