Wave of the future? NCAA approves big experiment for Ivy League kickoffs
An experimental — and fascinating — rule change will come to the Ivy League this season.
The NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel on Wednesday approved a rule that will allow the Ivy League to kick off from the 40-yard line in conference games only. As part of the experiment, touchbacks will move to the 20-yard line.
Right now, kickoffs happen from the 35-yard line. And after touchbacks, a drive begins at the 25-yard line.
The news comes two days after a report from CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd suggested preliminary discussions had begun within “two influential college football bodies” about potentially eliminating kickoffs from college football. Clearly, the Ivy League experiment is an attempt to make kickoffs less dangerous. Placing the ball at the 40-yard line should create more touchbacks and fewer instances of major, potentially dangerous collisions. At least that’s what officials hope.
Will this become a wave of the future in other conferences? It’s not difficult to imagine. Kickoffs appear to be under greater scrutiny than ever.
Many eyes will watch to see how the Ivy League’s experiment unfolds.