IOWA CITY — There are NCAA rule changes that Iowa football coach Kirk Ferentz doesn’t mind — he welcomes many of the recruiting calendar changes announced earlier this week — but the dean of Big Ten coaches is no fan of a change which eliminates two-a-day contact practices.
“It’s something that has been passed down, from my vantage point, with zero dialogue from people that work in football, out on the field,’’ Ferentz said Wednesday. “I worry about that a little bit. We’ll adjust, but the removal of two a days to me is a little short sighted.’’
Changes to the rules in recent weeks includes two components, first eliminating two-a-day contact sessions and a second change which mandates days off each week but allows teams to begin preseason work one week earlier while maintaining the existing limit of 29 preseason practices.
The two-a-day change — designed to lessen the risk of injury — does allow schools to have two practices on one day, one with contact lasting up to three hours and then a walk-through period with no contact or pads that can last up to two hours.
“I’ve never participated in a two-hour walk through and I don’t plan to in my lifetime,’’ Ferentz said, adding that Iowa’s contact sessions have never approached three hours in length.
Ferentz is not a fan of either change, but said Iowa players will be asked to report to camp earlier because of the latest change.
“When we talk about making the calendar better for our student-athletes, then we lengthen the time they’re in camp and shorten the break between summer conditioning and practice time, I just don’t feel it’s necessary,’’ Ferentz said.
“… It’s going to be a lot of wasted time, and quite frankly to me camp is about keeping guys on the clock, being efficient, making sure you’re moving. … I think there are other ways we could have done this without affecting the calendar.’’