SEC will electronically track players’ movements and speeds in 2013


The NCAA Football Rules Committee recently approved an experiment in which players from the SEC, along with the Big 12 and Pac-12, will wear electronic tracking devices next season in order to collect and measure speed and movement data. And they have no idea what they will do with the newfound data yet.

The data could tilt towards improving player safety, but it could also be used in the future for media and coaching purposes, via AL’s interview with SEC director of officials, Steve Shaw:

“I think it really is more for tracking how fast a player is moving and the direction of his movements so you have an electronic signature of all of that,” Shaw said. “Then what you do with that, we have to figure that out. You could track speed before a collision and that sort of thing. To be honest, I’m not sure what all of the applications are. But it has potential benefit in player safety, so I think it’s worth taking an initial step to see what the technology does.”

According to, the NFL had some players wear small chips inside their shoulder pads last season. The reason was never made known, but it was speculated the data would enhance the viewers’ experience by filtering the data directly to the viewer either by phone or TV. Viewers could have instant data, such as how many miles per hour a certain player runs, or how much force a certain player has when bringing the wood on defense.

“There’s not a final plan out there,” he said. “The technology is emerging. It’s not fully developed. There’s promise in it and we really need to look at and see if it has benefits to the game. That’s as far as we are right now.”

Shaw said it’s still unknown where the chips will be located on the players’ bodies, or how many players will wear the chips.

Can you imagine what we could learn from the data of Jadeveon Clowney wrecking the entire state of Michigan in the Outback Bowl?

Photo Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports



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