The Citadel to use some XFL rules for its spring game


When the XFL made its debut earlier this month, we made the argument that college football should adopt a couple of the professional football league’s “unique” rules. Next weekend, one FCS program will do just that. In an unofficial game, of course.

Next Saturday, The Citadel will hold its annual spring game. This week, though, the program announced said game will have quite a few twists.

First, the team will utilize players as coaches, with the real coaches taking a hands-off approach. Secondly, the game will feature several rules currently utilized by the XFL.

From the school’s release:

The game itself will feature four 12-minute quarters, utilizing many rules from the XFL. The most noticeable differences will be on special teams. The Bulldogs will use the XFL kickoff rule where the kicker will kick from the 35-yard line with the coverage team lining up at the return side 35-yard line. The return team lines up at the 30-yard line and neither team can moved until the ball is caught by the returner.

There will also be no kicking of extra points. After a touchdown, the teams will have the option of running a play from the 2, 5, or 10-yard line, worth 1, 2, or 3 points. If the defense is able to force a turnover and return it to the end zone, the resulting score is equal to the number of points the offense was attempting to score on its PAT.

One of the more unique features for this game will be the option for the double-forward pass. The offense has the opportunity to throw two forward passes, as long as the first pass is behind the line of scrimmage.

If the game goes to overtime, the Bulldogs will use the shootout style overtime. Overtime consists of five rounds with each team getting one play to score from the 5-yard line. If the teams are tied after five rounds, then rounds will continue until one team is leading at the end of a round.

Of all of the XFL rules that have been discussed, the kickoff rule is the one that has the highest chance of actually making it to the FBS level. In fact, South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp said recently that’s the direction this level of the sport is likely headed.

“I think the [XFL] kickoff may be where we’re headed. I think it’s an interesting new approach,” Muschamp said. “It keeps the kickoff in the game and eliminates some of the collisions we are worried about.”

Former Navy coach Niumatalolo joins UCLA staff

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LOS ANGELES – Former Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo is joining UCLA’s coaching staff as director of leadership.

The school said in an announcement Friday that Niumatalolo will serve as an advisor to the Bruins’ football staff and players.

Niumatalolo led Navy for 15 years and was the winningest coach in school history at 109-83. The Midshipmen, however, finished with losing records the past three seasons, including 4-8 the past two.

Navy played in 10 bowl games under Niumatalolo. He also was the only coach to win his first eight games in the storied Army-Navy rivalry.

Troy, Jon Sumrall agree to new 4-year contract through 2026

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TROY, Ala. ⁠— Jon Sumrall agreed to a new four-year contract as Troy’s coach after leading the Trojans to a Sun Belt Conference championship and national ranking in his debut season.

The school announced the deal, which runs through 2026, but didn’t release details.

The Trojans went 12-2 and won their final 11 games, second only to national champion Georgia, including the league championship game and the Cure Bowl against UTSA. For the first time, they finished a season ranked, ending up 19th in The Associated Press Top 25.

“When we appointed Coach Sumrall in December 2021, we challenged him to return Troy football to the top of the Sun Belt Conference,” Chancellor Jack Hawkins Jr. said. “It didn’t take long, as the 2022 season was the best in our FBS history.”

Troy held all 14 of its opponents to under their season average in scoring, beating UTSA 18-12. The Trojans beat Coastal Carolina 45-26 in the Sun Belt title game.

“Last year was an amazing accomplishment for everyone associated with Troy football and was the product of relentless effort from our players and staff, athletic administration and university leaders,” Sumrall said.