Instant Replay in College Football

With just under five minutes to go in the first half, Wake Forest’s wide receiver Devon Brown appeared to fumble the ball after a pass from quarterback Riley Skinner, but the fumble was ruled after Brown was down, meaning there would be no turnover.

Before the snap, however, the official stopped play and declared, “The previous play is under review.”

Instant replay is a common thing in the National Football League, but it has only become common in college football in the past year.

There have always been things that could be reviewed, such as the placement of a ball.  Before the 2008 season, however, the rules changed to add three more instances where an official review can be called: field goal attempts, when the ball carrier is ruled down and when the ball carrier is ruled down near the goal line.

The new rule changes also added the head coaches’ challenge.  This means that each head coach gets one opportunity to challenge the call on the field per game.  If the ruling is then over-turned, the coach gets one additional challenge to use throughout the duration of the game.  This means that each head coach could have up to two challenges in every college football game.

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