The Ivy League recently decided to make all practices during the season no-contact out of a growing concern for head injuries, and Pitt Panthers head coach Pat Narduzzi isn’t a fan of it.
Appearing on Bruce Feldman’s The Audible, part of Fox Sports, Narduzzi commented on the new policy and called the rule “crazy.”
“It’s a big deal,” Narduzzi said. “We’re not playing soccer or field hockey or basketball. It’s the game of football and it’s a contact sport. You can’t play the game without contact. You might as well cancel spring ball altogether because now what you’re doing is 7-on-7. You’re playing pass. You can’t stop the run. I think it’s a crazy rule. I’ve heard some of the Ivy League coaches say, ‘We’re doing that but we’re still having contact.’ I don’t know how well it’s even gonna be managed. I think it’s more the Ivy League presidents and chancellors are saying it for one reason, but I don’t know if they’re truly getting it. I’d like to see someone monitor 15 or 10 days of an Ivy League practice to find out if they’re still not having contact.”
Keep in mind that before Narduzzi was at Pitt, he was Michigan State’s defensive coordinator for eight years and developed a reputation for building hard-hitting and aggressive defenses. Narduzzi is also an ex-college linebacker, so his life in football has been all about generating contact and it’s understandable why he wouldn’t be a fan of one conference instituting no-contact practices during the season.
But by the same token, this is still the Ivy League we’re talking about. Not only do schools in that group play on the FCS level in football, but players that make the jump from there to the NFL are few and far between. Thus, the higher-ups are probably seeking to prevent young football players who won’t be playing the game after college from suffering long-term health problems.
What do you think of the Ivy League’s new policy, fans? Is Pat Narduzzi wrong or right? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports