Walt Anderson, the coordinator of the officials for the Big 12, took the stage for day two of Big 12 media days to talk about some of the rule changes to take place in 2017, and there is good news.
Well, good news for the fans. Maybe not so much for the Universities trying to plan on-the-field festivities during halftime. Anderson explained that going forward, schools will not longer be able to request time extensions; for example, homecoming celebrations.
“Halftime across the board in all regular season games will be 20 minutes,period, end of story,” Anderson said. “There will be no more requests by individual institutions to extend that for whatever purpose. I know in the Big 12 most of our schools ask for five-minute extensions for various purposes, be it Homecoming, be it Senior Day, whatever that might be.That is no longer allowed. All halftimes will be 20 minutes, and also the 20-minute clock is going to go up onto the screen in the stadium as soon as the second half ends, and the referee will start that clock right away.
“In the past, we’ve often waited for the teams to completely clear the field or for coaches to finish their interviews at the sideline before they went into the locker room. No longer the case. It’s 20 minutes.”
Halftimes aren’t the only thing getting cracked down on. Timeouts are too.
“The [other] area of timing that you’re going to notice a difference in is a strict adherence to the media break,” Anderson said.
“There will be no additional extensions. There will be no, “well, we need extra time on this break to make a special announcement.” The networks have all been informed of this change. So those are the three timing changes.”
The changes are overall beneficial to the game, and we suspect the fans aren’t going to complain too much about the new rules. However, it will be interesting to see what kind of impact this has on the game day festivities.
While not extending halftimes any longer than normal for special events may not seem like a big deal, the fact that the halftime clock no longer waits for teams to clear the field before it starts, could make a significant impact.
Will we see things like opposing bands making the trip become more and more rare as they might not have time to put on a halftime performance? And what effect will that have on neutral site games and bowl games and the halftime festivities that go into those events? We will have to wait and see.