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Kentucky Basketball

NCAA Approves Men's Basketball Rules Changes For 2019-2020

June 5, 2019

Making threes has now become more difficult in the men’s college game. The NCAA’s Playing Rules Oversight Panel offically approved moving the men’s college basketball 3-point line back to 22 feet 1 ¾ inches, which is International Basketball’s distance, today. The line had previously been at 20 feet 9 inches, where it had been for the past 10 seasons. By comparison, the NBA three point line is 23 feet 9 inches and 22 feet in the corners. This, in theory, will lead to more spacing on the floor and decrease teams’ dependence on threes, making the three-point shot less prevalent in the college game. Coaches surveyed by the panel seemed to have suggested that teams and players had become too reliant and dependent on the shot and as a result the game had begun to suffer. Just this season, we had seen a few players on UK’s roster take shots with their foot on the line or just barely behind it. Ashton Hagans was most notable, and with him returning for his sophomore season it will be interesting to see if he takes as many threes, as he will have to stretch his range more than a foot beyond where he was comfortable last season. I believe you will see players adjust accordingly to this and three-point attempts likely wont drop much, but spacing will be better on the wings and at the top of the key. When the three point line was last moved back percentages dropped, but eventually recovered to where they were before the distance change.

Another approved change by the Panel allows for replay review of any basket interference or goaltending call made in the last two minutes of the second half or any overtime. This, however, doesn’t address the issue of a call NOT being made, which is sad because that is exactly what happened in the UK/LSU game just this past season that likely led to this rule change. It is unclear why the Panel didn’t approve replay review of any basket intereference or goaltending situation. Hopefully in the future this will be addressed.

Three more changes approved by the Panel are as follows:

Now, the shot clock will be reset to 20 seconds on an offensive rebound where the ball had hit the rim instead of 30 seconds. The Panel’s justification for this change makes sense as they stated that the offensive team is already in the front court and this will therefore speed up the game.

Also, coaches will be allowed to call live-ball timeouts during the last two minutes of the second half or any overtime period.

In addition, the Panel approved a proposal where players will now be given a technical foul if they use derogatory language towards another player referencing race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disabilty.

While all these changes seem to make sense, I’m sure there will be tweaks to the new goal tending/basket interference rule, allowing for replay review in any questionable goaltending/basket interference situation. I would expect replay review to be incorporated into many aspects of calling the game. John Calipari just yesterday basically said he is all for “getting it right”. He is not opposed to games lasting a little longer as long as we are getting calls right. I agree with Cal on this matter. If “getting it right” is the goal of any basketball official then replay should be embraced and the process of review perfected as we go. Also, in the future, I would expect the college game to eventually adopt a four quarter system as opposed to the two half format it currently has.

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NCAA Approves Men's Basketball Rules Changes For 2019-2020

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