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Blogging about college football by an Oklahoma Sooners fan.

Toss the helmet rule

Joe Washington

The NCAA needs to eliminate the dumb rule regarding helmets this year.

You know the one I mean: When a player’s helmet pops off during a play, provided it’s not a direct result of a foul, he must hit the sideline on the following play.

Say what?

That’s like your mom telling you to go to your room for being a bad boy. “Go to your room young man until you can play nice like the other boys.”

Before this stupid rule, when a player’s helmet flew off, he just retrieved it from the turf, put it back on and returned to the huddle. How difficult is that? But now, he has to go to the sideline for one play.

Another crazy part of this rule is if the ball carrier's helmet comes off, the play must be whistled dead immediately. No more running into the open field without a helmet. Joe Washington would hate this rule. Several times during his OU career, his helmet popped off because a player could not wrap him up. Joe would keep going, many times all the way to the end zone.

You can imagine how pissed Barry Switzer would have been had Joe been told to stop running because his hat flew off. Switzer would have cried for the officials to be blackballed just like when he made the same cry when Keith Stanberry was robbed of an interception against Texas in 1984.

The rule also states that if a player loses his helmet, he cannot make a tackle, continue blocking or running a route. If the player does not stop, his team receives a 15-yard penalty.

“And since you don’t want to be nice to the other boys, you will go to bed without any dinner, young man.”

Yes, the NCAA is trying to cut down on the incidence of concussions, but this rule has wussified the game. It needs to die after just one year.