NCAA rules committee approves moving 3-point line Print
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Friday, 04 May 2007 03:52
NCAAB Headline News

 INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -College basketball players might want to start practicing longer shots.
The men's basketball rules committee approved a measure Thursday that would move the 3-point line back one foot in 2008 - from 19 feet, 9 inches to 20 feet, 9 inches. If approved by the playing rules oversight committee on May 25, it would mark the first major alteration to the 3-point shot since its adoption in 1986-87.
The move comes after more than a decade of debate about whether to extend the line. The extended line has been used on an experimental basis in some early-season tournaments and has shown no dramatic change in shooting percentages, but it never previously had passed the rules committee for all regular-season and postseason games.
Committee chairman Larry Keating said two proposals were considered. The other would have moved the line to 20 feet, 6 inches, the same distance as international 3-pointers. Both are shorter than the NBA line, which is 23 feet, 9 inches at the top of the key and 22 feet at its shortest point in the baseline corners.
``We made it a point to come up with a distance that was correct for us and that didn't necessarily mimic the international line,'' Keating said.
Women's rules committee chairwoman Ronda Seagraves said the 3-point line will remain unchanged in women's basketball, and Bruce Howard, spokesman for the National Federation of State High School Associations, said he's unaware of any discussion about changing it on the prep level. High schools also use the 19-foot, 9-inch distance.
The new men's rule would impact all three college divisions, and Keating expects the oversight committee to pass the proposal in three weeks.
``It has passed what we've done for the most part unless there are financial or safety issues, so, yes, I think it will be approved,'' he said.
The reason for delaying the change until November 2008 is money.
Keating said it was unfair to force schools to add a surprise expenditure this year since most budgets already have been approved.
But Keating had little doubt a change to the 3-point line eventually will come.
``I like to say the day that it passed was the day we began discussing moving it back,'' Keating said. ``The basic percentages haven't changed. I think it's safe to say you might see some reversal on that (percentages) for men.''
He also believes it's necessary to help create more space between perimeter and post players, and it could help the rules committee eliminate some of the more physical play - something it has tried to reduce over the past several years.
In another move, the committee approved a measure that would change the way players line up on free throws. Rebounders would have to move back one spot on the floor, following the same rules women's basketball teams currently use.
But the committee rejected adding the arch underneath the basket for charge-block calls, a line the NBA uses, in part because it believed there would be too many lines on the court.
It also passed measures that would allow officials to use replay monitors when trying to determine flagrant fouls and to assess who started a fight and announced next year's points of emphasis will include the block-charge calls underneath the basket, enforcement of the coaches' box and palming.
The women's rules committee passed a rule requiring officials to use replay when a fight breaks out. Current rules allow officials to use replay monitors, but do not make it mandatory.
The points of emphasis in the women's game next year will focus on traveling, unsportsmanlike behavior and enforcement of the legal guarding position. The committee also rewrote the rules about technical fouls so they would be counted toward individual and team fouls.

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