During his weekly radio show on Thursday afternoon, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day said he would advocate for college football to adjust the location of the hash marks on the field inward.
“I absolutely would be in favor of it, and I’ve actually considered trying to make a movement in the offseason to get the hash marks moved inside, closer to the NFL (layout),” Day said on 97.1 The Fan. “I think that the hashmarks in the college game are antiquated. I think it was something that was done a long time ago and would open the game wide open. I think it would be really good for the sport.”
After each play, the ball is spotted on or inside the hash marks, which run perpendicular to the sideline on every yard of the field. They are just 60 feet from the sidelines in the college game, but 70 feet and nine inches from the sidelines in the NFL.
The difference is significant in one of two ways, as it makes it more difficult for college kickers to convert a field goal from an angle. It also gives the offense less field to work with one side if they’re lined up on the hash mark.
Over the years, the NFL has gradually pushed the hash marks closer to the middle of the field. That, in turn, increased scoring and opened up the passing game considerably more than it had been.
“You have to evolve with the times, and I think that the size of our players, the speed of our players have changed,” Day said. “When we put that ball on the hash mark, there’s a bunch of bodies on the boundary, where you see in the NFL game, it spreads out when you get more toward the middle of the field. I think it’s something I’d really be in favor of.”
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