Sports

NCAA to reduce shot clock in men's basketball

Indianapolis, IN (SportsNetwork.com) - The NCAA men's basketball rules committee has recommended a package of changes that would include the reduction of the shot clock from 35 to 30 seconds.

The committee met earlier this month with an effort to improve the pace of play and improve scoring in the men's game.

In addition to the shot clock reduction, a few other changes include the expansion of the restricted arc under the basket from three feet to four feet, the elimination of a team timeout in the second half and the removal of the ability for a coach to call timeout when the ball is live.

"The committee has taken significant steps to reverse the trends in the sport that are concerning to the men's college basketball world," said Rick Byrd, chair of the committee and men's basketball coach at Belmont University. "We have spent the past year collecting data, opinions and considering proposals that will help our game. Our anticipation is that dedicated officiating enforcement, along with this package of changes, will help balance the offense and defense in our game."

The shot clock was last adjusted for the 1993-94 season when it was reduced from 45 seconds to 35 seconds.

Expansion of the restricted arc under the basket was implemented on a trial basis for the postseason NIT this spring and data compared to the 2013 tournament showed a decrease in the number of block/charge calls from 2.77 to 1.96.

"Although the reduction in the shot clock to help increase scoring seemed to be the most discussed topic, the increase in the physicality of play has been a major concern for coaches. The NCAA rules committee has addressed that this week with an emphasis on perimeter defense and post play," said Ron Hunter, president of the National Association of Basketball Coaches and men's basketball coach at Georgia State University.

Other proposed changes include the reduction of the amount of time to replace a player that has fouled out, the elimination of the five-second rule when a player dribbling is closely guarded, and allowing officials to use the monitor to review potential shot clock violations throughout the game.

The recommendations must be approved by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel, which is scheduled to discuss the changes via conference call June 8.