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NCAA proposes numerous rule changes to speed up basketball


NCAA proposes numerous rule changes to speed up basketball

NCAA basketball could look pretty different next season, as numerous rule changes were proposed Friday to help speed up a game that many have complained is becoming increasingly difficult to watch.

With hopes of getting a faster-paced game, the NCAA men's basketball rules committee proposed several rule changes, including changing the shot clock to 30 seconds from the current 35 seconds, as well as taking away one second-half timeout and altering timeouts to make them line up better with media timeouts. Additionally, the committee also proposed changing the distance of the restricted-area arc under the basket from three feet to four feet and allowing officials to penalize players who fake fouls.

These changes aren't official yet, as they still need to be approved by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel, which is slated to discuss the proposals on June 8.

“The committee has taken significant steps to reverse the trends in the sport that are concerning to the men’s college basketball world,” committee chair and Belmont head coach Rick Byrd said in the NCAA's release. “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.”

[MORE BIG TEN: Top picks and draft hopefuls converge at NBA Draft Combine]

The proposal to change the length of the shot clock comes after the NIT experimented with the 30-second shot clock during this year's postseason tournament. It would still be six seconds longer than the NBA's 24-second shot clock.

Additional proposals related to the pace of play include removing one timeout from each coach's arsenal in the second half of games. Resumption of play following timeouts and the fouling out of players would also be more strictly enforced. Coaches would no longer be allowed to call timeouts while the ball is live. Timeouts called within 30 seconds of media timeouts would serve as media timeouts.

The committee also proposed a rule enforcing players who fake fouls.

"The committee discussed the growing issue of players attempting to draw fouls by deceiving officials," the release read. "The committee proposed a rule that would allow officials to penalize faking fouls during the use of video to review a possible flagrant foul."

The committee also OK'd an experimental rule change that, like the 30-second shot clock this past season, would be tested in the NIT. That experimental rule is adding a sixth foul to players, which is the same as in the NBA.

Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal


Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal

Former University of Illinois tennis star Kevin Anderson completed a marathon upset against an all-time great on the highest stage of professional tennis.

Anderson came back from two sets down to beat Roger Federer in Wimbledon’s quarterfinals 2-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 13-11 on Wednesday morning. He will play in the semifinals of the tournament for the first time in his career.

As a native of South Africa, Anderson played three seasons with the Fighting Illini and won the NCAA doubles championship during the 2005-06 season as a sophomore. The 32-year-old was a three-time All-American in singles at Illinois.

Now, as the eighth ranked singles player on the ATP World Tour, Anderson is a force to be reckoned with at the professional level. He made it all the way to the US Open final in 2017.

The former Illini star will look to keep his recent success going when he represents Illinois in the semifinals of Wimbledon this Friday.

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Weeks will separate a perfect 10-year anniversary where Northwestern will play at Wrigley Field for one of its regular season games in the upcoming years.

Back on Nov. 20, 2010, the Wildcats battled it out with Illinois, known as the “Wrigleyville Classic,” which saw the Illini take a 48-27 win.

Even though it’s still two years out, Northwestern still planned ahead and announced its opponent for its game at Wrigley Field on Nov. 7, 2020, against Big Ten rival Wisconsin.

“Obviously an exciting opportunity for our football program to come back to Wrigley Field, one of the Cathedrals of sporting venues in the world,” Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “When I announced it to our team, they were absolutely ecstatic.”

“The opportunity to play at Wrigley field is unique to us, being Chicago’s Big Ten team, and to have the chance to come down and play in an atmosphere like we did a few years back was a bowl game type atmosphere, and I look forward to this special opportunity.”

This game though will be a little different than it was back in 2010. Both the Wildcats and Illini played toward the west end zone due to a tight squeeze near the right field wall due to box seats that were added down the third base line.

Now, Northwestern and Wisconsin do not have to worry about that problem because the bullpens have since moved to the outfield.

Cubs president of business operations Crane Kenney spoke at a news conference earlier on Tuesday at Wrigley.

“So excited to welcome back Northwestern to Wrigley Field to talk about football again,” Kenney said. “We had an incredible experience with them back in 2010."

Kenney also mentioned new seating is on a temporary platform that can all be removed and the dugout tops can be removed as well, and the field will expand west, to allow for a longer field.

With a sellout crowd in the last go around for the Wildcats, don’t be surprised for another sellout at the Friendly Confines.