Team fouls will reset halfway through each half at the 2017 NIT.
The NCAA is trying out some new rules to speed up college basketball during the 2017 NIT. The biggest one has team fouls resetting 10 minutes into each half as a way to combat games being turned into free throw shooting contests when both teams are in the double bonus.
Resetting team fouls has been the biggest argument for men’s college basketball moving from two halves to four quarters. Women’s college basketball recently made the switch to quarters, leaving the men’s college game as the last bastion of the two halves format. This experiment is a workaround to keep the game at two halves while still getting the benefits of a four-quarter system.
The NCAA also announced that the NIT will experiment with the shot clock resetting to 20 seconds instead of 30 seconds when the ball is inbounded in the front court.
The NIT has served as a place to experiment with rule changes in the past before they are adopted full-time by the NCAA. The 2015 NIT was the first time college basketball shortened the shot clock to 30 seconds from 35 seconds. That same year, the NIT also widened the arc under the basket by a foot.
Scoring has been up in college basketball in the two seasons since the rule changes. Cutting back on time in the double bonus is the logical next step, even if moving to quarters seems like the easiest way to do it. Anyone who watched Kansas and Indiana combine for 63 free throws in an otherwise fantastic game to open the season can recognize the need to cut back on bonus time.
One thing lost in this rule change: no more one-and-one free throws. RIP.