Big Ten Debates Instant Replay
Following the Minnesota and Purdue game last Saturday, the Big Ten is once again questioning whether or not instant replay would be a valuable addition to the league rules.
The play that spurred the current debate was a Travis Cole to Tony Henderson touchdown for the Gophers in overtime that was ruled out of bounds.
All over the Big Ten, the answer is the same — allow instant replay. In fact, following last year’s season, a vote showed that all the coaches were in favor of the addition and it seems that today, the vote remains the same.
“In the head coaches’ meeting … we took a vote and it was unanimous by the Big Ten coaches that we were in favor of replay,” said Indiana head coach Cam Cameron. “We all supported it.”
While the proposal on the league level was still brewing, the Big Ten offered the conference up as a model for the coming season in order to show possible positive and negative effects of instant replay.
“It didn’t have to be an NCAA rule,” said Cameron. “We as the Big Ten, because of all the access we have with our TV coverage, with all the cameras set up throughout most of our stadiums … can get the angles that you need. We felt like it was good for conference.”
The NCAA decided against allowing the media-popular Big Ten this chance — a decision that now is coming into question by fans, media, and teams alike, including questions about the possible drawbacks instant replay may have on the league.
It seems as though instant replay is an issue that may never be settled, even among contenders in the Big Ten when the issues of expense, time and correct representation are involved. The problem of replay possibly costing a good chunk of money was apparently the number-one reason for the NCAA refusal of instant replay, even on a trial basis.
A close second and third for the rule being shot down lay in the game itself. Although the goal of instant replay is to speed up the college football game, it could play the opposite role in further slowing the game down.
On another level, whether some stadiums or teams can even provide the technical equipment for instant is also a huge problem, whether within a conference or across the league. This discrepancy could greatly alter records and stats even as it clears up rulings.
Special teams woes: While it appears to be a widespread epidemic for the Big Ten, Indiana’s head coach Cam Cameron is especially concerned about his Hoosiers’ punting game. Across the board, coaches are looking for improvements in this part of the game commenting on the necessity of an effective special teams performance and the vital role it plays in consistent victories.