Historically, the NCAA Ice Hockey Rules Committee has come up with some good rules and some really bad rules as well. This year the Rules Committee decided that they are in favor of doing away with all hand passes even in the defensive zone.
Hand passes made illegal
Committee members proposed that all hand passes be made illegal, including in the defensive zone.
The referee will stop play on any hand pass, and the faceoff will be in the offending team’s defensive zone. Additionally, if the team commits the violation in its defensive zone, that team will not be able to change its players before the ensuing faceoff.
“This is a way to promote scoring and create more chances on offense,” McLaughlin said. “Not being able to make a line change can have a pretty big impact, and this takes away a rule that gave the defensive team an advantage.”
From the bad rules department, this rule change is a head scratcher. There is no reason to change the hand pass rules.
I don’t see the logic in this rule change what-so-ever, it’s incoherent. I don’t know how it’s going to promote more scoring in the offensive zone – which is also an illogical reason for promoting this rule change. If hockey seriously wants to “promote” goal scoring in hockey then they need to change the size of goalie equipment in all levels of hockey (NCAA, Junior Hockey, ECHL, AHL, NHL). The size of goalie equipment is too big.
Wouldn’t it make sense if the NHL and the NCAA mimicked each other closely if college hockey is going to serve as a development league for the professional ranks?
Before you bite my head off, consider this: College Hockey Incorporated is promoting the NCAA route as a way to making it to the NHL. So if the NCAA is going to be an alternative development – as opposed to going the CHL route – why not have the NCAA rules mimic the CHL, NHL and AHL rules? Is the NCAA not sending players to the professional ranks in high numbers? College Hockey Inc said that 301 ex-college hockey players played in the NHL during the 2011-12 season. That means that the NCAA is currently supplying about 1/3 of the players in the NHL. Wasn’t this one of the reason for promoting the half shields/three-quarter shields?
Honestly, I don’t see how anyone couldn’t make the argument that NCAA Division I Hockey isn’t a developmental hockey league – all you have to do is watch the AHL and the NHL playoffs this season and you will see many ex-college hockey players playing in the playoffs.