For the most part, the rules committee recommended keeping the status quo, and there will be no major changes to the rules at this time. The committee did suggest a few minor tweaks.
NCAA Ice Hockey Rules Committee Chairman, Tom Anastos, weighed in on minor tweaks the committee recommended.
“I would say that generally, we dissected our game and ultimately believe our current rules are serving us well,” Anastos said. “We continue to work to find ways to improve our game long term, but I would say we’re pleased with where we are right now.”
Here’s the proposed changes from the NCAA Ice Hockey Rules Committee
Hand Pass by Faceoff Player – The players taking a faceoff are not allowed to use their hand to play the puck. A violation of this rule will result in a minor penalty, similar to the NHL rule.
Faceoff Procedure – The defending team’s faceoff player shall be required to put the stick down first. Previously, the attacking team was required to do so. Center ice faceoffs will continue to require the visiting team to put the stick down first.
Goal pegs – Ten-inch goal pegs that are anchored into the ice or floor must be in place at all NCAA levels by the 2016-17 season.
Faceoff Location – Offensive Scoring Opportunity: If the offensive team is attempting to score and the puck goes out of play — the faceoff will remain in the attacking zone.
Faceoff Location – High stick/hand pass: In these cases, the ensuing faceoff will be one zone closer to offending team’s goal.
Video Replay – Several changes were made to the criteria and process:
• It is reviewable to determine if a goal was scored before a penalty occurred.
• If an offside’s or too many men on the ice penalty is missed and a goal is scored, it is reviewable until the puck leaves the offensive zone. This replaces the previous wording that only allowed the review to occur if the missed play directly led to a goal.
• It was clarified that video review may be used without the restriction of games that are being broadcast on television.
Penalty Shot/Shootout – During a shootout or penalty shot, if the goal becomes dislodged by the goalkeeper, the referee shall either award a goal (if intentional or if the goal was obvious and imminent) or allow the team to shoot again.
Penalty Shot – If a player that is awarded a penalty shot is injured and unable to take the shot, one of the players on the ice at the time of the infraction shall be chosen to shoot.
Look-Up Line – The committee approved the use of a warning-track style line intended to positively impact safety near the boards. The use of this line will not be mandatory, but is permissible. (NCAA.COM)
Penalty Shot/Shootout Rule Tweak
The penalty shot/shootout rule tweak was long over due. This rule could put a stop to goalies kicking the net off of the moorings during the shootout and penalty shots situations.
Moving forward, if the net becomes dislodged during a shootout or a penalty shot, the on-ice officials “shall” either award a goal or let the shooter attempt another shot.
Players will continue to wear the full face shields
The committee was considering allowing the players to wear that three-quarters face shields, instead of the full face shields. However, the committee didn’t recommend action at this time. The players will continue to wear the full face shield for now.
“We are trying to be sure we help to collect data from any source that can be compared to NCAA data,” Anastos said. “The process has been challenging, but we will continue to work with leagues that use the shield so we can make an informed proposal if appropriate. We just don’t have enough information at this point.”
I am disappointed that the rules committee didn’t recommend video review for major penalties or recommend allowing players to wear the three-quarter face shield.
Eric is a 1996, 1999 graduate of the University of North Dakota. Eric covers the University of North Dakota Hockey and Division I college hockey. Eric is the Contributing Editor for Inside Hockey.