College Confidential

Big 12 limiting football contact to two days per week

TCU offensive linemen Trey Elliott, left and Austin Schlottman go through drills with the rest of the line during spring practice in the indoor practice facility on the TCU campus in March.
TCU offensive linemen Trey Elliott, left and Austin Schlottman go through drills with the rest of the line during spring practice in the indoor practice facility on the TCU campus in March. Special to the Star-Telegram

Big 12 teams will be limited to two in-season contact opportunities per week, including game days, conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby said Monday.

The restriction, which will go into effect this season, was announced by Bowlsby at the start of Big 12 media days at the Omni Hotel in Dallas.

The NCAA restricts teams to three days of contact per week.

Contact practices are defined by the NCAA as “any practice that involves live tackling to the ground and/or full-speed blocking.”

Live contact practice may occur in full-pad or half-pad (also known as “shell,” in which the player wears shoulder pads and shorts, with or without thigh pads), according to a Big 12 release Monday.

Live contact doesn’t include “thud” sessions, or drills that emphasize wrapping up.

Bowlsby said he doesn’t see the Big 12’s adopted policy creating a disadvantage. If anything, Bowlsby said, it’ll keep teams more rested toward the end of the season. Bowlsby cited the NFL’s live contact policy, which restricts teams to 11 days of contact for the whole season, beginning after training camp.

“What we determined is that our [coaches] weren’t using them anyway,” Bowlsby said. “I don’t think they feel like they’re giving up anything. I think some of it is actually style. Some of our guys don’t even hit two days a week.”

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