Thanks to an NCAA rule and academic calendars, Clemson will be at a disadvantage when it comes to preparing for Alabama in the National Championship Game on Jan 11. Because Clemson students go back to school on Wednesday the Tigers will be held to a 20-hour limit of practice time starting then. And since Alabama does not start up until Jan 13 — two days after the game — the Crimson Tide will not be held to any sort of limit according to ESPN’s Brett McMurphy.
This is actually the second year in a row this has happened with Ohio State being the benefactor of unlimited practice time leading up to its game against Oregon. Practices, weightlifting and any film sessions or meetings required by coaches count toward the 20-hour limit. The game also counts as three hours, no matter how long it lasts.
Why the NCAA doesn’t make a special case for both teams in a format that it created — full well knowing it would mean cutting into the spring semester for most schools — is beyond me, but those are the rules it wants to stick to for now. To have teams competing in different parameters is ridiculous (at least to me) and if Alabama wins like Ohio State did last year there will certainly be some blame going around on these kinds of rules.