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Topic: Question about punt touchbacks
Replies: 9   Last Post: Nov 15, 2015, 1:38 PM by: hrigsby®
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Replies: 9  

Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 14, 2015, 11:28 PM
 

I have a disagreement going with a friend.

Scenario:

If the punting team kicks a ball and a member of the punting team touches and possesses the ball at the 3 yard line but then his momentum carries him into the endzone, is it a touchback?

I thought the rule in college football was basically that if the ball ever breaches the goal line then it's a touchback (thus why the receiving team always bats it back before it crosses the plane). However, a friend is saying that if the punting team player possesses it before running into the endzone, then it's down where he originally possessed it. I disagree.

This scenario almost just happened in the Baylor came, but when he possessed it at the 3, he threw it backwards before he broke the goal line plane and his teammate downed it at the 2 or 3.

What say you?

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Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 14, 2015, 11:45 PM
 

In college, it goes by where the ball is, no matter if in the air or not. Once the ball crosses the goal line, it is a touch back. My understanding is that if a player is standing a yard into the end zone and bats the ball back before it crosses the goal line, it is not a touch back.

In the pros, the ball can cross the goal in the air and be batted back as long as the player never steps into the end zone.

Correct me if wrong, please.


Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 3:16 AM
 

I'm in complete agreement with you. However, this guy is adamant and I was unable to find anything in the rule book (with a quick Google search) concerning it.

The only reason I'm contemplating him possibly being right (even though I'm 95% sure we're correct) is because you sometimes see a ball being touched by the kicking team and bounce backwards (not into the end zone) and the ball is placed at the original spot of the touch. But I think that's in the pros and not college ball.

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Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 7:43 AM
 

Your friend is right. In college the ball is placed where it is first possessed. So as long as clear possession is established before the player crosses the goal line then he can then do whatever he wants and the ball should be placed where he first gained possession.

It's another issue entirely if the ball is batted back.

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Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 9:01 AM
 

I'll fess up, say I was wrong, and apologize to him if that's the case, but where is that actually written in the rules?

I can't think of a time where a punting-team player caught the punted ball at the opponent's 3 yard line, clearly had possession (took a few steps with the ball under control), had his momentum run him into the endzone, and the ball was then placed at the 3. The punting-team player who possesses the ball always tries to throw it back before the goal line. If what you say is the case, why wouldn't they just try to catch it, take a couple steps in the direction of the punt, then casually stroll into the endzone?

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Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 1:26 PM
 

It happened at the App vs. GSU game a few weeks back. Essentially how it was interpreted is that once the kicking team has possession the ball is dead. If there is no possession then it's still live. In that case it's also illegal touching and the returning team can advance the ball with no repercussions (meaning if they lose yards out fumble they still get the ball where it was illegally touched). I saw a link to a thread on it a while back. I'll try to find it again.

The reason why players try so hard to stay out of the end zone is that they don't know the rule well enough. They watch NFL players throw it back so they do the same. Shouldn't though.

2021 student level member

Re: Question about punt touchbacks

[1]
Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 1:38 PM
 

http://en.allexperts.com/q/College-Football-2792/2014/11/downing-punt-college.htm

Here's the link. No idea what kind of site this is but it adheres to how I've seen it ruled. That said, I don't know where this is addressed in the rule book (and I doubt I'd be able to decipher the meaning if I did!)

2021 student level member

If the ball crosses the goal line it is a touchback.


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 3:24 AM
 

If he touches it at the 2 and the ball rolls into the endzone it is a touchback.


Re: Question about punt touchbacks


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 8:53 AM
 

It's a touchback. It's not dead until the ball stops and whistle blows UNLESS it is knocked forward by the kicking team and in that case it's spotted at its farthest point up field.


^this


Posted: Nov 15, 2015, 9:04 AM
 

But where/how is this written in the rules?

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Replies: 9  

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