There has been some changes made to the NCAA’s instant replay rules. The NY Times reported that referees will now be allowed to: use video review to :
confirm a shot-clock violation or determine who caused the ball to go out of bounds on a deflection involving two or more players in the final two minutes of regulation or overtime.
They will also be allowed to use instant replay to decide who committed a foul. In the past they could only look at who was shooting free throws and the foul had to be called on the spot.
This is a great addition to the rules. The NBA has been doing the review thing for the deflections under two minutes for a few years and it has proven to be useful more than a few times over the course of that time period.
Of course there is a small issue with that rule and it is that it sometimes takes time to decide who caused the ball to go out of bounds. When that happens, it sort of acts like a free time out. This is useful for both teams but especially if one of the teams is down and out of time outs late in the game. Of course, the benefits in this situation outweigh the negatives because it allows the refs to make sure they are making the right calls. In tight games, one badly called out of bounds call could mean the difference between a win and a loss.
Being able to look at who fouled on a certain play will also come in handy. In the past, having to make a quick decision on who to call the foul on has put some players in foul trouble when they didn’t deserve to be. This new rule very well could change the outcomes of more than one game simply by allowing a player to stay on the floor or even forcing a player off.
The hope with these new instant replays rules is that the refs will use them to their advantage. I doubt this will be the case but let’s hope that no referees feel like they are too good to change their decisions because of instant replay. Everyone makes mistakes and hopefully they will be willing to admit theirs. It has worked in the NBA so I don’t see why it wouldn’t also work in the college game.