Panel approves expansion of COVID-19 penalties in men’s and women’s football

The NCAA’s Rules of Play Oversight Board on Tuesday approved extending a rule change from the 2020 season, increasing penalties for spitting or biting an opponent, or anyone involved in a game. Men’s or Women’s soccer match, suspended for two games and classified as a violent act II red card violation. The changed rules were initially made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition, coughing on an opponent or anyone involved in the match, will continue to be classified as a red card violation II red card for violent conduct in the 2021 season. All removal and suspension rules relate relating to acts of violence II shall apply.

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The COVID-19 exemptions from the 2020 season will also be extended to the 2021 season. Those exemptions include allowing the training and team areas to be extended 20 yards from the 5-yard neutral area. and allows the referee to visually/verbally verify box score information is correct if official NCAA box scores are used.

Clarifying handball

In a meeting earlier this month, the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Soccer Rules Committee clarified handball interpretations to be consistent with interpretations of international football.

Football officials will be trained to assess whether a handball violation has occurred.

One of the important things is that not every contact of the ball with a player’s hand/arm is a violation. Officials should assess a player’s hand/arm position in relation to their body movement in a particular situation.

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In general, a player should be judged on whether the hand/arm that is being used to make contact with the ball is out of his or her body.

In addition, when determining offside, the hands and arms of all players are not considered. The upper arm line aligns with the underarm line for the purpose of determining whether a player is in a side or offside position.


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READ MORE Panel approves expansion of COVID-19 penalties in men’s and women’s football

James Brien

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