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NCAA committee recommends medical observers for football

The NCAA Football Rules Committee on Monday recommended an experimental rule that would require medical observers at games to notify officials when a player appears to have suffered a head or neck injury.

NCAAThe rule could be approved during the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel’s conference call on Thursday. If passed, it would take effect beginning with the 2015 season. The rule would allow officials to stop the game when notified to remove a player for medical evaluation.

From the NCAA:

The medical observer could sit in the press-box booth with the instant-replay official. If the medical observer suspects a player has a head/neck injury that has gone undetected by the on-field officials, the medical observer would alert the instant-replay official, who would contact the referee to stop the game so the player could be removed and evaluated by the team’s medical staff.

The conference-assigned medical observer also could be located on the sidelines instead of the instant-replay booth.

In non-conference games, the visiting team could choose whether it wants to play the game using the experimental rule if the home team intends to use this provision.

If the experimental rule is approved, conferences could be asked to submit reports after the season to help the committee determine whether the rule would be made permanent.


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