By Ty Halpin
The Playing Rules Oversight Panel is reviewing the relationship between playing rules and marketing/branding efforts in the membership.
During its NCAA Convention earlier this month, the panel confirmed that the financial impact of rules is within its responsibility for review – both positive and negative.
“We realize that in most cases, the financial-impact review deals with things that will add expense to the membership,” said chair John Iamarino, Southern Conference commissioner. “In some cases, however, a further discussion may be needed when playing rules could potentially affect other marketing efforts. We want to be sure we are able to trigger additional dialog if needed.”
An example of this might be a decision by a rules committee to prohibit advertising on the field of play (if previously allowed). With contractual commitments already in place on many campuses, such a decision could unintentionally cause the membership to violate agreements and ultimately lose valuable funding. PROP’s role would be to ensure that the commercial element of such a rules proposal has been fully vetted before approving or denying the action.
“Ultimately, our role is to be sure the playing rules committees have done their diligence and also that the membership is aware of the potential impact of a change,” Iamarino said.
At its Jan. 13 meeting, the panel also reviewed its requirements for hiring secretary-rules editors in the future. The secretary-rules editor serves on each rules committee as a nonvoting member and provides interpretations and clarifications on behalf of the committee.
The panel confirmed that secretary-rules editors may not be active coaches or game officials. However, PROP did not remove from consideration those who are active conference coordinators of officials or serving an officiating organization as an officer or leadership position.
“It is important to remove direct conflicts of interest when possible,” Iamarino said. “The demands on these important positions require secretary-rules editors to no longer be actively coaching or officiating.”
In other action, the panel sent two proposals from the Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports to each rules committee for a thorough review. The panel reviewed current playing rules dealing with mouth guards and the management of visible blood on a uniform during play and requested each committee to consider modifications, if needed, during the next cycle.
Finally, the panel confirmed its role in the rules modification process for those sports that use an outside governing body’s playing rules. When modifications are proposed by the NCAA championship committee, the changes must follow a similar system that NCAA playing rules committees follow and be sent to PROP for approval.
Ty Halpin is associate director of playing rules administration at the NCAA.