Rule changes in women’s NCAA basketball: are they effective or do they hinder the flow of the game?

Kevin Moylett/ Sports Editor

Kevin Moylett/ Sports Editor

New rule changes for women’s NCAA basketball teams this 2015-16 season have proved to be effective so far. Although, players still are wondering why these rules were implemented in the first place.

The NCAA playing rules oversight panel approved the decision to use a new game format. It includes using four-quarters instead of two halves in women’s NCAA basketball.

Each quarter is 10 minutes long now instead of the usual twenty-minute halves that the players are used to. This decision was made based upon the NCAA Women’s Basketball Committee’s belief that the change in the rules would in return enhance the flow of the game.

“The four-quarter format gives us more time to rest during the game,” Dana Peterson, co-captain on the Cavs women’s basketball team, said. “It is only 10 minutes a quarter now and with subs and timeout the players have more time to rest and the game is broken up more.”

During the short amount of time, we can work hard for 10 minutes and get a break before the next quarter begins,” Peterson said. “That means we have more time to talk to our coach and figure out what we need to do when we get back out on the court for the next quarter.”

The ability to converse with the coach more in between quarters can be important to the games outcome but is this helping the enhancement of the flow of the game like the committee originally hoped for?

“Four-quarters is a disadvantage because the game is stopped a lot and it is hard to get into the flow of the game,” Peterson said.

Even though the women’s basketball team is now using this format that professional basketball teams use, some players think that the outcome of the new rule change has actually produced the opposite effect to some extent.

In addition to the rule changes, women’s NCAA basketball now shoots two free throws after the fifth foul in each quarter.

“When our team reaches the limit of 5 fouls in a quarter, the other team shoots two shots on every foul. This is an advantage to our team if we can knock down our foul shots when we get to the line,” Peterson said. “However, it can be a big disadvantage if our defense is slow and fouls send people to the line.”

How have these rule changes impacted the team this season so far?

“This is the first season with the rule changes and we are getting used to them each time we play a game. I think our team wonders why the rules had to be changed and why it is only changed for the women’s game and not the men’s,” Peterson said. “However, we still love the game and enjoy every moment we step on the court.”

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