NCAA proposal will reduce contact in preseason football camp

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FILE – Georgia wide receiver Dominick Blaylock (8) looks to make a catch during an NCAA football preseason practice in Athens, Ga., in this Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, file photo. The NCAA football oversight committee is preparing to recommend changes to preseason camp that will include fewer fully padded practices and the elimination of some old-school collision drills. The football oversight committee ‘s initial proposal called for at least nine of a team’s 25 preseason practices to be run with players wearing helmets but no other pads, and no more than eight fully-padded, full-contact practices. (Joshua L. Jones/Athens Banner-Herald via AP, File)/

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — College football teams will be required to hold at least seven padless practices during the preseason and the number of contact practices will be reduced from 21 to 18 under changes proposed by the NCAA’s oversight committee Thursday.

The football oversight committee’s proposalgoes to the Division I Council for approval this month. It is expected to pass and go into effect next season.

The changes to preseason practice come after a five-year study of six major college football teams showed players suffered more concussions during preseason practices than during games.

The committee was considering a new model for preseason camp that included at least nine padless, helmet-only practices to go with eight full-contact practices and eight in which some contact would be allowed and players would be in just helmets and shoulder pads.

Coaches pushed for a few more contact practices and the final model approved by the committee settled on seven no-contact days over the course of 25 preseason practices.

The proposal also bans straight-line contact drills, such as the Oklahoma Drill; limits the amount of full contact in any practice to 75 minutes; prohibits more than two consecutive days of full-contact practices; and reduces the number of preseason scrimmages from three to two.

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