SEC Commissioner Mike Slive spoke today at the media days event, but I found more interesting what Gerald Boudreaux, supervisor of officials, had to say. Maybe you won’t, but I’m weird like that.
Boudreaux spent a lot of time breaking down the new technical foul rules. What they’re doing this year is classifying technicals.
A Class A is a more serious violation, such as disrespecting an official, using vulgar language, intentional contact with an official, a coach coming off a bench to object to a call. The other team would get two free throws, and a Class A tech counts as a personal foul if it’s on a player, and as a team foul. A Class A tech called on the bench counts as a Class B for the coach.
A Class B technical will be called for such things as a defender reaching across the inline on an inbounds play, a player entering the game without checking in, or – after a warning – a coach wandering out of his box. Also, one can be called for not replacing a disqualified player within 20 seconds (the old rule allowed 30 seconds). A Class B tech does not count toward the free throw bonus.
What combinations of A and B fouls lead to ejection, you ask? Two As; one A + two Bs; or three Bs.
Boudreaux also addressed certain “points of emphasis” for game officials this season:
• Illegal contact
• Coaches’ behavior
• The charge/block under the basket
Boudreaux said this is the fourth straight year palming has made the list. “The problem we have with palming,” he said, “is strictly enforcement.” He added that enforcement of that rule tends to taper off as the season wears on. But officials have more incentive this year, because those who don’t enforce it consistently will not be considered for the SEC Tournament.
Other officiating/rules tidbits:
• The buffer zone beyond the endlines is now six feet. Nobody can be there except for a live TV cameraman (the dude you see wheeling around in the little chair). Safety first, said Boudreaux.
• The new 3-point line takes effect. It’s now 20 feet, 9 inches from the goal for the men. That line will have to be a distinctly different color from the women’s line. Boudreaux conceded that the extra space inside the arc will probably encourage players to try and get away with more physical play. The NCAA will soon expand the lanes, but Boudreaux thinks that should have been done at the same time as the 3-point line change.