Rules changes could help Tech special teams

Georgia Tech’s kickoff coverage may improve without the addition of a single player. The NCAA football rules committee proposed moving the kickoff to the 35-yard line from the 30. The Jackets recorded eight touchbacks on 80 kickoffs last season and allowed 21.6 yards per return. Tech’s kickoff net was 41.9 yards, meaning opponents had an average starting spot on its 28-yard line. The Jackets’ return net was 45.4, or an average start on the 24. Tech opponents had 16 touchbacks on 61 kickoffs.

There’s a few other proposed tweaks with player safety on kickoffs in mind. A touchback would give the return team the ball on the 25-yard line, not the 20, as an incentive to take the touchback.

Given the difficulties Tech had with both the return and cover teams last season, I’m guessing this would be a proposal coach Paul Johnson would favor. It would, however, hinder the Jackets’ attempts at their first kickoff return for a touchdown since 1998 (Dez White vs. Maryland).

Also, the kicking team would have to line up for the kickoff less than five yards from the kickoff spot to prevent players from gaining speed and to reduce impact of collisions.

There’s also a proposed rule about blocking below the waist that won’t appear to affect Tech’s cut blocking. It’s a slight change on the rules changes last year regarding blocking below the waist, which also didn’t affect Tech’s blocking schemes.

Thanks for reading.

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

105 comments Add your comment

GT FAN 4 LIFE

February 10th, 2012
10:16 am

First! Thanks for the update, this can only be good news for CPJ and the boys….. we’ve had a hard time with this for a while now.

Chris

February 10th, 2012
10:17 am

Jacket Fan

February 10th, 2012
10:28 am

Well, that takes care of kickoffs. How about punts and punt returns?…

lucky21

February 10th, 2012
10:31 am

I don’t like the changes. I understand they are trying to be safe, but by design football is a high energy collision sport, and if you take that out of the equation like people are trying to do then it isn’t the same sport.

GPB in NC

February 10th, 2012
10:36 am

I think you mean Dez White, not Dez Bryant.

5150 UOAD

February 10th, 2012
10:38 am

Kids will still try to get TD’s on Kickoffs because that is how some can get in the NFL with no better skills than that.

Hayseed Dixie

February 10th, 2012
10:47 am

@5150

I dunno, a kid who can consistently score touchdowns on returns seems pretty dang skilled to me.

I’d glady burn a scholly on a kid who batted .150 on returns.

GT parent (thinking of coming down for labor day game)

February 10th, 2012
10:48 am

I think that the helmet rule will be the hardest on teams since just losing the helmet during a play, causes that player to sit out the next play. There seem to be many helmet loses during a game it could affect ‘momentum’ for the team and could lead to opponents brushing the straps/snaps to encourage helmet loss. Though I wonder how this will affect a team if it’s the QB and other players where there may not be that much depth (with a real injuries/disabled list).

I also like the no leaping rule.

wes

February 10th, 2012
10:55 am

UGA 17, Tech 10 @ the half. Branden “Majors in Magazines” Boykin returns the kickoff to the GT 40 YL.

Yeah, I like this rule. Especially considering the Jackets have been AWFUL in this area for more than a decade now.

Tech76

February 10th, 2012
11:00 am

@ GT parent…. That just means they will need a tighter fitting helmet and to make sure that the chin strap is on and snapped up.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:02 am

Giving the return team the ball on the 25 instead of the 20 sounds to me like you are penalizing a team for having a good kicker. That makes no sense.

BigTimeTechFan

February 10th, 2012
11:29 am

Supersize:

To me it looks like the 25 yard line spot rule will be an incentive for Kickoff team to kick it higher and shorter so we may see more returns but kicking team has 5 less yards to run and more time to get there.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:31 am

BigTime, so our kickers who can’t seem to kick past the 15 yard line will suddenly look good, I guess. LOL

GIVE ME A BREAK

February 10th, 2012
11:33 am

What are they going to do next stop teams from blitzing or say that an unblocked defensive player can not touch the QB until an offensive player makes contact with him. Leave the game alone. Instead of putting the ball on the 25, it should be the 15 to cause the player to want to come out and play football.

GIVE ME A BREAK

February 10th, 2012
11:45 am

Put Congress in charge of the rules committee. lol

winst

February 10th, 2012
11:46 am

Pretty sure that’s Dez White who would have returned that kickoff, not Dez Bryant

blazer

February 10th, 2012
11:56 am

How about changing the rule that you can’t hold on every play-grabbing the front of the jersy
and the stupid incomplete pass that was thrown into the stands.

Hoopster

February 10th, 2012
12:10 pm

Magazines?…………………As a major?………………Are you serious?

The Grinch

February 10th, 2012
12:33 pm

Hoopster
February 10th, 2012
12:10 pm

I don’t know about “magazine” majors offered at UGA, but here’s some challenging “engineering” degrees offered at tech:

The School of History, Technology, and Society
The School of Literature, Communication, and Culture
The School of Modern Languages
The School of Public Policy

Seriously, check them out.

The Grinch

February 10th, 2012
12:34 pm

But as far as the kickoff rule goes, whatever. UGA has been pitiful so I guess it could help.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
1:05 pm

@ The Grinch, take a look at what some of the graduates of the school of history, technology, and society at Tech are doing now —

Securities and Antitrust Litigation Attorney
Head of a Chinese-foreign Joint Venture in China’s Third Largest City, Tianjin
Owner of a Computer Software Firm
Policy Analyst for Bread for the World
Attorney Working as Chief Protocol Officer for the State of Georgia
Human Resource Officer at Turner Broadcasting Inc.
Medical School Student at Emory University
Graduate Student in Sociology at Washington State University
Graduate Student in History at the University of London

Now what are some of those magazines graduates from UGA doing with their degrees?

Jacket Man

February 10th, 2012
1:12 pm

What was the major of the CEO of Walmart?

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
1:18 pm

Walmart CEO Mike Duke earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1971, where he was a member of the Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity, and now serves as a member of the institution’s advisory board.

[...] from 30 to 35 and touchbacks bring the ball out to the 25 instead of 20. more from ken at AJC: Rules changes could help Tech special teams | Georgia Tech Reply With [...]

Jimbo

February 10th, 2012
2:14 pm

Tech’s Public Policy school is pretty good. And before some uninformed idiot points out that the majority of Tech athletes major in Management, Tech’s undergrad business school isn’t too shabby (consistently ranked higher than UGA’s).

http://mgt.gatech.edu/programs/under/index.html

old dog

February 10th, 2012
3:46 pm

Don’t know why all the helmets are flying…..very seldom did that happen a few years back Seems to happen to some playeres MUCH more than others…………some unheard of macho thing? Hair styles? What the heck?

5150 UOAD

February 10th, 2012
4:18 pm

old dog look & see most players only have 3 of 4 straps snapped. They like to look COOL with 1 strap flapping in the breeze when they run.

Ken Sugiura

February 10th, 2012
4:51 pm

apologies about the white/bryant mixup. fixing.

crackbaby

February 10th, 2012
5:01 pm

Thanks for the proposed rule change post, Ken.

Here is a doozy:
• Additional Protection to Kick Returner
Through officiating interpretation, the committee approved a recommendation to provide a kick returner additional protection to complete a catch before allowing contact by the kicking team.

If that isn’t the most vague description I’ve ever heard. What the heck is the “officiating interpretation”? One Mississippi, two Mississippi? A little help here, please.

230gr Full Metal Jacket

February 10th, 2012
5:38 pm

“Magazines” major, LOL. I guess that’s one step above the famous UGA “General Studies” degree that the majority of the athletes followed a few years back. It actually wasn’t a major at all — you just took classes in whatever you wanted (basket weaving, recreation and leisure, finger-painting, etc) and when you got enough credit hours you got a diploma!!!! I don’t know if they still have that one, but I personally know several former Dawgs who got their so-called degrees that way under Vince Dooley. But what do you expect from a program that has 78% of it’s football players on “Special Admissions” — ie they couldn’t get into an accredited University anywhere based on grades/scores/intelligence. But dang Forrest sure is fast so lets just overlook the 2-digit IQ and the fact he’s “graduating” from high school at 20 years old ;) .

panzytechieschedual

February 10th, 2012
5:45 pm

Noticed in a report that techie spends more money on recruiting mens sports than Georgis does so where does the money come from since Georgia has quite a bit more income than techie. also look at the results. I dont understand this. does the money come from the tax payers. this should be investageted.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
5:50 pm

@ panzy….., maybe you should “investagate” where you got your education from, since you obviously can’t spell. I bet you’re one of the dwags who post “your an idiot.” LOL

By the way, in answer to your barely intelligible question, UGA is the one who uses (or has used) tax payer money to support the athletic program there. How do you think the basketball barn in Athens was built. It is fully documented that the Georgia tax payers paid for that dump.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
7:15 pm

Ken, your article on Gregory’s “non-negotiables” is excellent.

Bob Horner

February 10th, 2012
7:44 pm

Elimination of allowing the forward pass would help more.

Flowery Branch Yellow Jacket

February 10th, 2012
8:17 pm

@Supersize … it’s bad when you correct someone else’s spelling, but then misspell the word yourself … try “investigate”. On the other hand, your assessment of Ken’s “non-negotiables” article was spot on.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
10:11 pm

Flowery Branch, I typed the word investigate as panzy….. typed it and put it in quotes to emphasize it. I guess that wasn’t clear enough. He spelled it as “INVESTAGATE.” I know the correct spelling is “INVESTIGATE.”

bob in nc

February 10th, 2012
10:35 pm

Gtkenz

February 10th, 2012
10:55 pm

Please pass. And it actually helps on returns………80 yards eats up more clock. I love it.

1 4 GT

February 10th, 2012
10:57 pm

The Grinch was quickly & thoroughly repudiated by High Tech & to a lesser degree by myself on the other blog (about Williams?) earlier in the day. He just had to put that same kaka up twice and get called on it twice, Oh well, what else can you expect, I guess?

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:03 pm

1 4 GT, I didn’t see it on another blog, but I thought it was interesting that after he was presented some FACTS here, he never had anything else to say. Those Georgie dwags just don’t know how to respond to facts, do they?

1 4 GT

February 10th, 2012
11:09 pm

No sir! They surely do not.

1 4 GT

February 10th, 2012
11:17 pm

The 1st post referenced to “The Grinch” was indeed in the Juwann Williams (Tucker QB recruit) blog posted at 12:47 PM today. Exactly the same as the one above.

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:26 pm

1 4 GT, I just went back and read the entries in that blog. You’re right, Grinch posted the same thing word-for-word on both blogs. Something else that I found interesting there is that people were claiming you can’t do pre-med at Tech. There is no pre-med degree offered by any school, but the opportunities to pursue a career in medicine are as good as Tech as anywhere else. There is a young man at my church in Augusta who graduated from Tech 2 years ago and is now in his second year at the Medical College in Augusta. There is at least one Tech grad in the medical school at Emory, and there are quite a few doctors and dentists all over the country who have undergraduate degrees from Tech. Yet another false claim by the dwags.

1 4 GT

February 10th, 2012
11:41 pm

Supersize, I know it and you know it. To the best of my knowledge, there is no pre-med major at any college/university/institute anywhere in the world. My brother majored in Biology at Ga St U with hopes of being able to go to med school after he graduated from there. But unfortunately, much like myself, marriage, a mortgage and in his case, kids got in the way. Young Mr. Williams will soon learn that he will have to follow the same major path thru which ever school he attends. A major in biology, then med school, then a specialization in sports medicine. About a 10 to 12 year course of study and internships from now before he will begin to reap the benefits of all that time and hard work. I wish him the best of luck. He can get a really good start down that road at GT and that much will be paid for. Then, he will start hunting grants and student loans. I’m glad all of that is behind me. I’ve done my time and see better days full of doing nothing in my future. GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO JACKETS THWG

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:51 pm

There is nothing to compare with doing nothing. It’s just too bad that it takes so long to get to that point in life.

1 4 GT

February 10th, 2012
11:53 pm

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

Supersize that order, mutt

February 10th, 2012
11:58 pm

Well, I have a long day of doing nothing tomorrow, so I need to get to bed and rest up for it. Have a good one, 1 4 GT. TTYL

Supersize that order, mutt

February 11th, 2012
12:01 am

It’s a tough life, but somebody’s got to live it. LOL

HighTech

February 11th, 2012
9:13 am

Supersize…it sounds like you’re taking care of business, everyday. lol.

Ghost

February 11th, 2012
10:48 am

230 gram, Please provide a link on the 73% special admits. Strange that Pj would offer scholarships to so many Georgia players over the past 4 years. This years roster has around 28 that were offered by tech.