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Ivy League goes to "no tackling in practice" policy

Discussion in 'College Football' started by OSUK, Mar 4, 2016.

  1. OSUK

    OSUK Sometimes lucid, mostly confused

    The Oklahoma Drill, full live/hitting scrimmages, drills with tackling to the ground, goal line situations with masses of bodies hurling at each other, and more, have been staples of football at every level. Coaches have felt those kinds of things instill toughness in players, make for better tackling, and are good for overall team development.

    The downside has been injuries of all kinds, and since we are in this age of concussion awareness, head injuries in particular.

    The Dartmouth coach hasn't had live tackling in his practices for 5 years. They emphasize technique, avoid injuries, and the coach says there is no downside. His critics point out his less than stellar winning pct. as a head coach, but the entire league is adopting this policy.

    My HS coach believed in full contact practices. We killed each other twice a day during pre-season, and 2 times a week during the season. He would back it off toward the end of the year. My college coach did about the same. I gotta admit, there were many times I was watching guys get carried off the field and thought that it was insane.

    In HS (late 70s, early 80s) we played a team that never hit during the week, and those guys were the hardest hitting fellas we played. So, this idea has been around for a long time. It is just now hitting college football, albeit a minor league in CFB. It will be interesting to see if major programs and leagues will move in that direction.

  2. exhawg

    exhawg Mirror Guy Staff Member

    I don't see any big time programs eliminating hitting from practice unless forced to. They may reduce it and focus on technique, but not get rid of it totally. If the NCAA wants to come down and get rid of hitting in practice across the board I don't think it would be a bad thing. Probably have to find ways to work on tackling without actually tackling. Will be interesting to see in the Ivy League if there is an uptick of injuries in games because players aren't hitting in practice.
  3. colobuck79

    colobuck79 tilter of wind*ills

    What's next, unions for college football players? 8D
  4. OSUK

    OSUK Sometimes lucid, mostly confused

    I can see full contact/hitting restricted or eliminated simply because of the liability involved with concussions. If other programs aren't hitting, and some kid gets a concussion in practice, doesn't that form the foundation for the coach/football program being a cause of and liable for a head injury? That's how some lawyers would think.

    I am for leaving this up to coaches, but if the question is whether it is wise to do full contact during practice, I'm torn. I'm not sure you can practice short yardage and goal line without going full contact. On the other hand, any time you go full contact, the chances of injury go way up - not just head injuries, but injuries in general.
  5. BigWoof31

    BigWoof31 Senior

    The backfield is now a designated safe space.
    Fungo Squiggly likes this.
  6. Steve19

    Steve19 Watching. Always watching. Staff Member


    Caption please

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