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Men’s College Lacrosse Rules: The Fastest Game on Two Feet Just Got Faster

The time has finally come in NCAA men’s college lacrosse for regulated time. After many years, and many rumors, the shot clock will be making its way into men’s collegiate lacrosse. It was first added into field lacrosse in the MLL and it has been a solid success. Some leagues and all-star games around the country have featured shot clocks as well, and there is normally a great appreciation of its use. Everyone will always have their own opinions, but I believe these rule changes and the shot clock will be huge for the sport as a whole. Along with some big crease changes that could make some attackmen happy.

Every year they seem to be making lacrosse even better with minor rule changes that can make the game more exciting to watch and play. Sometimes I don’t it’s possible to make lacrosse any better, but then here we are. These rules are not completely approved yet; but, they are highly suspected to soon be affirmed by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Committee.

Out with the Old NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Shot Clock

In NCAA men’s college lacrosse, the old rules stated that once a team gained full possession of the ball they had 30 seconds to get the ball across midfield and into the box. Then from there, they could technically hold onto the ball the entire game if they kept attacking the cage, perceiving to be attacking, or if the referee just did not know when to put on the shot clock on correctly.

When the official would decide to put on the shot clock because he thought they were stalling or not going for a goal, the team would get 30 seconds to get a shot off. Also, once you reach the box with the ball you can not take it back over the midline or it is a turnover. If you did not attack the goal, meaning get a shot off that hits pipe or the goalie makes a save, it is also a turnover.

In with the New NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Shot

The new perspective rules are going to change it so a team has 20 seconds to get the ball over the midline after they gain full possession of the ball compared to the old 30 seconds to get the ball all the way into the restraining box.  On a faceoff, after a player crosses the midline, they then will have a 60-second shot clock that starts if they make a pass to another player in the offensive half. If the player carrying the ball over the midline doesn’t pass, the shot clock will begin once they enter the box.

On transitions from defense, the shot clock will immediately once the ball crosses midfield. The offensive team then must get off a shot within that time or they turn the ball over. Unless they get a defensive infraction, the shot hits pipe, or a goalie save, then it will reset back to 60 seconds.

Along with these shot clock changes, there will be a few rule changes that have to do with the crease. There will also be a change to the size of the subsition box.

Effects On The Creator’s Game

They experimented plenty in leagues, tournaments, and games to know this is the direction that they want to move in the college game. Collegiate coaches were all interviewed and polled and more than 50 percent across all 3 divisions agreed it was time. Along with almost 3 quarters of lacrosse officials who also decided they thought it would be a good move, the consensus is that a shot clock will improve the game.

We will really get to see how much this will change how coaches coach teams with a methodical offense. Will teams who like to lull teams to sleep with quick ball movement and waiting for the perfect shot crumble, or will the change their game completely and succeed? Will players personal styles change or differ due to these small changes? DO we really think these rules will get passed.

Some teams will definitely look a little different than the used to and I believe it will for sure change some coaches opinions on how they want to teach their brand of lacrosse. These rules all seem like fantastic improvements to the game and I can not wait to see how they truly affect our favorite sport. I definitely think the committee will pass the rules next month, which should make the game a little faster and possibly give us some high scoring games.

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