College Basketball News: SEC coaches ponder changes

Kevin C. Cox

More fouls and less shot clock?

Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy wants to eliminate players fouling out - CBSSports.com

Kennedy says a fifth foul should not result in a player's ejection. Instead, let the player stay in the game and foul as much as he wants. But every foul after five would give two free throws – and the ball – to the other team.

Because what college basketball needs is more fouling and stoppage of play. I often find myself missing the piercing bleet of a referee's whistle now that the season is over and often think to myself, "what if the last minute of basketball games lasted closer to 6 minutes?". By the way, that Timothy Burke fellow is well worth a follow on twitter.

Back to Andy Kennedy,

"We're the only sport where the best players can be eliminated from the game,"

Aside from Soccer (red card) and Football (targeting), sure Andy, you're right that basketball is the only sport where players are eliminated from the game through fouls. It seem ol' coach Kennedy will do pretty much anything to keep his best players on the court. Perhaps this was just another Ole Miss sociology experiments.

In more welcome and realistic news...

SEC coaches in favor of using experimental 30-second shot clock | CollegeBasketballTalk

And if the coaches in the SEC have their way, they’ll also be able to experiment with the 30-second shot clock in 2014-15. At the SEC’s annual league meetings this week, men’s basketball coaches have approved the use of a 30-second shot clock during exhibition games.

Former Tennessee and new Auburn's head coach Bruce Pearl seems to have prior experience with a shortened shot clock and offers some opinions.

SEC basketball coaches approve experimentation of 30-second shot clock, league athletic directors must still approve | NOLA.com

New Auburn coach Bruce Pearl said he coached the 2009 Maccabiah Games, which used the 24-second shot clock that is also implemented by the NBA.

"Even using the 24-second clock, I was able to fastbreak, use a bit of continuity and still get the play called," Pearl said. "Late in the game, you had to continue, score and attack. It might improve the quality of play late in games."

I know there was some debate this past season about the shot clock in college basketball and personally I'm all for shortening it. More up-tempo play, with more possessions, is generally a good thing. Seeing the SEC embrace progressive changes to the game as part of their drive to make the sport more popular in the league is very encouraging.

SEC Network could help boost basketball

The article points out something that's easy to overlook, the SEC went to both National Championship games. In football it was the expectation, in basketball it was the surprise.

Get ready for SEC basketball to get exposed like never before - in a good way | AL.com

The goal going forward is to win some big games before the NCAA Tournament starts, before conference play begins, before football season ends. Can't win them if you don't play them so there's a continued emphasis on upgrading the non-conference schedule.

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