Tom Izzo favors shortened shot clock, says its growing in popularity among coaches

The recently completed college basketball season had its share of highlights and memorable moments, but it also proved to be one of the uglier season's in recent memory in terms of offense.

Scoring was down across the board. Remember back in November when Georgetown beat Tennessee 37-36? It proved to be a sign of what was to come.

Sure, maybe that's an extreme example to illustrate the point. After all, most of Georgetown's games are generally fairly low scoring because of the style the Hoyas play. Not everyone can play the uptempo, 3-point-jacking variety of basketball you see from Iowa State for example.

Obviously, the fact that many of the best players only spend a year or two, at most, in college these days has contributed to the downturn in offense, but there are some possible answers that could help generate more scoring, while coaches and players try to improve shooting and offensive flow on their own.

Michigan State coach Tom Izzo said this week during an interview with WWLS Radio in Oklahoma City he is in favor of shortening the 35-second shot clock. Izzo did not say how much he would shorten the shot clock, but it seems likely most coaches would favor trimming it down to 30 seconds, which is the rule for the women's sode of the college game and international play.

"I would like to see a change," Izzo said. "One of the guys I have great respect for, Johnny Dawkins, who is at Stanford, we were in our meetings the other day and he said, 'We have the slowest game in the world.'"

Izzo is a member of the board of directors for the National Association of College Basketball Coaches. The group met at the Final Four in Atlanta a week ago and Izzo said shortening the shot clock was part of the group's discussions.

"It was just talked about," Izzo said. "You know the bureaucracy of committees and what its got to do, but I think there is getting a growing run at maybe doing that. I think more coaches are in favor of it."

Izzo also wants to see the game called consistently and he wouldn't mind seeing the lane widened, which would lead to fewer charging calls. He said with officials generally working only specific conferences throughout the regular season, the rules aren't enforced in the same matter across the nation. He would like to see that change as well.

"There is not a lot of consistency in our game, I don't feel," Izzo said.


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