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NCAA Approves ‘Kenny Pickett Rule,’ Changes to Targeting, Fake Injuries

The NCAA Playing Rules Oversight panel approved changes to several rules on Wednesday, including one banning players from making fake slides during games.

The panel’s mandate, also known as the “Kenny Pickett Rule,” states that any ball carrier who fakes a feet-first slide will be deemed down at the spot. The rule stems from the move that Pickett pulled off during the 2021 ACC Championship game that that spurred tons of reaction.

In Pitt’s opening drive against Wake Forest in the title game, Pickett sprinted up the field and maneuvered his way through the Demon Deacons defense. When Pickett made to Wake Forest’s 40-yard line, it looked as if he would slide but instead, he ran past the defenders a completed a 58-yard touchdown.

After the Panthers’ victory in the game, Pickett said he had all intentions of using the fake slide on the play.

“Yeah, it was intentional,” Pickett told the Associated Press. “I just kind of started slowing down and pulling up and getting ready to slide and I just kind of saw their body language and they just pulled up as well. ... I have never done that before. I just kind of kept going after I initially started to slide.”

In addition to changing the fake slide rule, the NCAA also made changes to the appeals process for targeting, players faking injuries during games, blocking below the waist and defensive holding that will begin in the 2022 season. 

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