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  • United Football League

    The UFL kicked off last night as the Las Vegas Locomotives won the inaugural UFL game against the California Redwoods. Las Vegas quarterback J.P. Losman picked apart the Redwoods defense on way to 30-17 victory.

    The UFL initially had plans to start with eight teams playing in targeted sites in the fall of 2008, but started with four. A friend of mine that was on the Steelers last year is playing for the Las Vegas Locomotives.

    From Wikipedia:
    The league had identified approximately 21 cities with strong economic bases, passionate football tradition, and a high number of average TV viewing households as potential team locations. Target markets included: Austin, Birmingham, Columbus, Hartford, Las Vegas, London (England), Los Angeles, Louisville, Memphis, Mexico City (Mexico), Milwaukee, Monterrey (Mexico), New York City, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Portland, Raleigh-Durham, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, and San Jose.[7]

    The league began its premiere season on October 8, 2009, playing games on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday evenings, with the first regular season game held on October 8 and the championship game on Thanksgiving weekend. Both the inaugural game and the championship will be held in Las Vegas.

    Like previous football leagues, the UFL has instituted several mostly minor rules changes that will differ from the NFL's rules. Though the league has indicated it would mostly adhere to standard rules, there are a few differences, as follows:

    No Tuck Rule - The Tuck rule is one of the most controversial rules in the NFL. In the NFL, if a passer brings his arm forward in a passing motion and then loses possession of the ball as he is attempting to tuck it back toward his body, it's considered a forward pass (and thus an incomplete pass if the ball hits the ground). In the UFL, it would be called a fumble either way.

    Touchdown celebrations - Celebrations, individual or group, will only take place in the endzones and on the bench area.

    Fumbling out of the endzones - If the ball is fumbled out of the endzone, it will be placed back at the spot of the fumble, pending which team last had possession.

    Intentional grounding - A quarterback is allowed to intentionally ground the ball anywhere behind the line of scrimmage if he is under pressure.

    Instant replay - All reviews will be viewed upstairs by the replay official and he will only have 90 seconds for review.

    Overtime - Both teams will be guaranteed at least one possession. When a team scores, the other team will get a last chance to score on the next drive. Similar to the College football rule.

    Officials - instead of the traditional black-and-white uniforms, UFL referees wear a red polo shirt with black pants.

    Play Clock - While the NFL has a 40 second play clock, the UFL has a 25 second play clock, which results in more plays and maintains a fast pace quality of play.

  • #2
    Re: United Football League

    I like the idea of this league in becoming a farm system for the NFL here in the states as opposed to Europe. I think it was a mistake though to launch this during baseball playoffs.


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    • Nick
      NCAA extends play clock among other rule changes
      by Nick
      NCAA extends play clock
      Pace of play addressed again by rules committee
      The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
      Published on: 02/13/08

      Two years ago the NCAA Football Rules committee, concerned that games were running too long, put in a series of changes in hopes of speeding things up.

      They worked. In 2006 the average game time dropped from 3:21 to 3:07 but fans and coaches howled because there were about 13 fewer plays and five fewer points per game than in 2005.

      So last season college football went back to the old rules and the bad news is that games averaged 3:22, a minute longer than in 2005. The good news is that plays and scoring also went back to the desired 2005 levels.

      In an attempt to produce more plays and points in a shorter game, the rules committee went back to the drawing board and on Wednesday recommended a few changes for the upcoming season.

      "Hopefully this time we got it right," said Michael Clark, the chairman of the rules committee and head coach at Bridgewater (Va.) College.

      The first is the implementation of a 40/25-second play clock, similar to that of the NFL. At the end of every play, the 40-second clock will start, which is the rule in the NFL. The old college rules featured a 25-second clock that did not start until the officials marked the ball ready for play. On a change of possession, the first play will be run on a 25-second clock.

      A number of college coaches have said they wanted the 40-second play clock because officials from league to league used different amounts of time to mark the ball ready for play.

      "We think this will give us some consistency when it comes to pace of play," said Connecticut coach Randy Edsall, who is a member of the rules committee.

      "If the NFL boys are doing it we seem to want to do it, too," South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier said. "I think it favors the teams that run the no-huddle. That gives the quarterback a bunch more time to stand up there and read the defense."

      The rules committee made another recommendation that will certainly shorten the game.

      After a player runs out of bounds and the ball is made ready to play, the official will start the game clock. Under the old rules the game clock would not start until the ball was snapped. This new rule will not apply in the final two minutes of the first half and the final two minutes of the game.

      In other recommended rules changes announced Tuesday:

      • A coach will get an extra instant replay challenge if his first one is upheld. Under the old rule the coach had only one challenge whether he was right or wrong. Under the new rule the coach, if he's right, will get one extra challenge, but no more.

      • If a kickoff goes out of bounds, the receiving team will...
      -02-13-2008, 05:51 PM
    • OldRamsfan
      From The Top
      by OldRamsfan
      General descriptionHope you enjoy

      Before the 19th century, when modern forms of football first emerged, the name "football" was applied to a wide variety of codes of rules with widely-differing rules. Although there are mentions of native Americans playing ball games, modern American football has its origins in traditional ball games played at villages and schools in Europe for many centuries before America was settled by Europeans. There are reports of early settlers at Jamestown, Virginia playing games with inflated balls in the early 17th century.

      As is the case with many sports, modern football games were popularized in the USA by students at and/or from elite schools and universities. These appear to have had much in common with the traditional "mob football" played in England, especially on Shrove Tuesday. By 1820, a notoriously violent game known as "ballown" began to be played at the College of New Jersey (later known as Princeton University). Also by the 1820s, students at Dartmouth College were playing a kicking game that would be called Old Division Football (for which they published rules in 1871). In 1827 a Harvard University student composed a humorous epic poem called The Battle of the Delta, one of the first accounts of football in American universities.

      Varieties of "football"

      Within the spectrum of modern football codes there are several "families", which have diverged from and/or influenced each other in their development. Many of these games have their origins in varieties of football played in England. By the 1850s, the two main families of football in England were the "kicking games", in which the ball was mostly kicked along the ground, and the "running games", in which the ball was mostly carried by players. Some codes combined elements from both families. In 1845, at Rugby School in England, rugby football became the first of the running games to have codified rules. The best-known of the kicking games is "Association Football" (a name commonly shortened to "soccer"), which began with the code devised in 1863 in England, by The Football Association.

      The origins of American football

      Oneida Football Club, 1861

      The Oneida Football Club, formed in Boston in 1861 is claimed by some sources as the first American football team. However, no one knows what rules the club used.They may have played "kicking" games, "running" games, both or some hybrid form. The latter seems most likely, since the "Oneidas" are often credited with inventing the "Boston Game", which both allowed players to kick a round ball along the ground, and to pick it up and run with it. The game seems to have been popular in Massachusetts (at least) in the mid-19th century: for example, there are references to it being
      -05-31-2006, 10:55 AM
    • r8rh8rmike
      'Tuck Rule": NFL Could Eliminate Controversial Call
      by r8rh8rmike
      'Tuck Rule': NFL could eliminate controversial call

      By Gregg Rosenthal
      Around The League Editor
      Published: March 14, 2013 at 03:21 p.m.

      The NFL Competition Committee held a conference call Thursday to go over possible rule change proposals that will be discussed at the NFL Annual Meeting, which starts Sunday in Phoenix.

      One item on the agenda is sure to be cheered by Oakland Raiders fans, although the notion probably will be seen as too little, too late.

      The NFL will propose to eliminate "The Tuck Rule."

      The change would make it so a player loses possession when he tries to bring the ball back to his body. (Yes, then Tom Brady's play should have been ruled a fumble in that case.) If the passer loses control while the ball is going forward, it's still incomplete. If he loses the ball while tucking, it's a fumble.

      This is a rule that never made a lot of sense to us in the first place. We're not sure why it took more than a decade after the Patriots-Raiders divisional-round playoff game after the 2001 season for this rule to change.

      Other proposals included:

      » The league would change the rules regarding illegally throwing the challenge flag. This is in response to last season's Thanksgiving game, in which a Houston Texans touchdown could not be reviewed after Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz illegally throw a flag. Moving forward, the play still would be reviewed no matter what. Any coach who illegally challenges a play would be charged a timeout. He wouldn't get the timeout back even if he wins the challenge. If the team is out of timeouts, it would be charged a 15-yard penalty.

      Call this the "Jim Schwartz Rule." It's a no-brainer.

      » The league would allow H-backs to wear uniform numbers 40 through 49.

      » The league also will propose three player health and safety rules. They include eliminating low blocks when offensive players are going toward their own end lines in the tackle box. One other proposal includes not allowing a runner to initiate contact with the crown of his helmet when outside the tackle box. This is sure to be a hot topic.

      NFL owners will vote on these proposals, among other more minor ones, at the annual meeting.
      -03-14-2013, 04:12 PM
    • r8rh8rmike
      Owners Pass Numerous Rule Changes
      by r8rh8rmike
      By John Clayton

      Apparently, the NFL is serious about putting safety first at this year's owners meeting.

      Owners passed four safety proposals Tuesday morning, a full day before they normally pass any rules involving action on the field. In past meetings, owners usually wait until Wednesdays to debate and vote on rule changes involving the game. The Competition Committee makes its annual report to owners on Monday, giving supporters or opponents an extra day to lobby for votes.

      When it came to safety this year, there was apparently no debate. Starting this fall, the NFL is going to outlaw the "wedge" on kickoffs, stop the bunching of players on onside kicks, protect blockers from a helmet-to-helmet hit from the blindside and save receivers from forearm or shoulder hits to the head when they appear to be defenseless.

      "We're trying to make the game safer for the guy getting hit and the guy doing the hitting," said officiating director Mike Pereira, who plans to retire this year.

      The safety change for the onside kick may seem to be a minor adjustment, but it became more important when the Competition Committee watched tape of violent collisions on onside kicks.

      In recent years, the league has tried to make onside kicks safer. Special teams coaches, however, found ways around those changes to group more players in smaller areas to gain an advantage. Under the new rule, players on the kickoff team will be spaced accordingly. First, at least four players of the kicking team must be on each side of the kicker. Second, at least three players must be lined up outside each inbounds line, including one who must be outside the yard-line number.

      The "wedge" has been part of kickoff returns seemingly forever. The wedge is simply three players lined up in a blocking triangle that a returner follows as it plows up the field against kickoff coverage. After watching years of tape, the Competition Committee felt the wedge was causing too many injuries. Starting this fall, no more than two receiver team players may intentionally form a wedge to help the returner. The penalty is 15 yards and will be enforced from the spot of the wedge. It will be called if three or more players line up shoulder to shoulder within two yards of each other to lead the blocking.

      The third accepted proposal involves a play in which Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Hines Ward made a block that resulted in a broken jaw for Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Keith Rivers. A 15-yard penalty will be enforced if a player delivers a blindside block to the head of a defender using his helmet, forearm or shoulder. The penalty will be enforced if a helmet, shoulder or forearm strikes the head or neck of the defender.

      The final change adds forearm and shoulder hits to protect defenseless receivers. In the past, officials gave an unnecessary...
      -03-24-2009, 03:38 PM
    • MauiRam
      Ref stalemate is teachable moment ..
      by MauiRam
      Jason Whitlock
      Updated Sep 25, 2012 11:03 AM ET

      Professional football’s Dow Jones dropped 1,000 points at Monday night’s closing bell, the moment in-over-their-heads replacement refs handed the Seahawks an undeserved victory over the Packers.

      If you never understood the ingredients that created the Wall Street subprime-mortgage financial collapse of 2008, the NFL is three weeks into an entry-level course that explains it all.

      Yep, picture commissioner Roger Goodell as presidents Reagan and Clinton greedily and temporarily relaxing oversight of NFL games at the behest of Wall Street billionaire owners. Next, picture NFL coaches and players as stock, bond and mortgage brokers recognizing the relaxed oversight and greedily ignoring all the rules.

      The result? Week 3 of the 2012 season, the football weekend when chaos marred one of the most exciting 24 hours in NFL history, the weekend The Great Referee Collapse of 2012 overshadowed the presidential race and everything else.

      There were 15 games this weekend. Three of them went overtime. Ten games were decided by a touchdown or less. There was a second miracle in the Music City when the Titans ruined Detroit’s microwave comeback. On the legs of Jamaal Charles, the Chiefs rallied from a 24-6 deficit inside the Superdome and won. Torrey Smith, the Baltimore receiver, had the most inspirational performance since Brett Favre went HAM the night his father died. The Arizona Cardinals stamped themselves as legitimate and put Michael Vick’s future in jeopardy. Christian Ponder led the Vikings to an upset of football’s most complete squad. Peyton Manning fell to 1-2.

      Has any sport ever owned Twitter the way the NFL did from 1 p.m. EST to 11 at night? For 10 straight hours, you couldn’t take your eyes off football and you couldn’t stop tweeting and talking about the crazy action.

      Only one thing trumped the spectacular play on the field: The Great Referee Collapse of 2012, which culminated Monday night with the Titanic-like ending to the Seahawks-Packers contest.

      Seattle’s referee-handed, come-from-behind, simultaneous-hail-mary-interception 14-12 victory was the perfect exclamation point to this referee collapse. On the final play of the game, Seattle receiver Golden Tate pushed one Green Bay defensive back to the ground and then was miraculously rewarded with a touchdown for pretending he simultaneously caught the pass another Green Bay defender clearly intercepted.

      It took three weeks, but the replacement refs finally stole a football game. Ed Hochuli is surely somewhere laughing uncontrollably. Mike McCarthy and the Packers are not. They fell to 1-2 thanks to bogus officiating. Bill Belichick probably isn’t laughing either. He’s probably still upset about the penalty-flag-scarred game the Patriots lost to the Ravens on Sunday night.

      It would be fun...
      -09-25-2012, 09:47 AM