Count Jimbo Fisher amongst the critics of the new NCAA rule changes.
"I think they might have enhanced the problem," said Jimbo Fisher when asked about the rule changes that move touchbacks out to the 25.
"I think you're going to get more big bodies flying down into short areas for collisions, now I think there's going to be more. You've got less space."
When asked specifically if he didn't like the new kickoff rule, Fisher hedged a little.
"No, I don't know, I'll wait and see," said Fisher. "I think it helps us, I'm not complaining about it because with the kicker we have and the type of athletes we have I think if we kick the ball right, do what we're supposed to do I think it can be an advantage for us."
Fisher admitted that it didn't don on him right away because kickoffs aren't always practiced in live conditions, but once the team started really practicing the new rules he realized how much more physical the kickoffs may be.
Dustin Hopkins is an extremely gifted kicker who has little problem booting a ball very high and landing it somewhere around the five yard-line. Factor in the speed on the Seminoles coverage team and it's only a matter of time before someone gets hurt or fair catches a ball inside the ten.
That's exactly what Fisher wants, but he admits it's also a lot more dangerous.
Fisher didn't hedge on the new helmet rules though, he didn't even let me finish the question when I mentioned it this morning.
"That one there, I do not like," said Fisher bluntly. "Here's what's going to happen, mark my words it's going to happen in college football this year... is that you're not going to have a timeout left something's going to happen where your quarterback scrambles down gets hit on the five, six-yardline and you got a first down, you get up clock the ball, he gets hit, the helmet comes off."
"Know what? Game's over. It's a ten-second rule, you take the ten seconds off, the game's over. On a guy who gets legally hit, his helmet's knocked off. The game is over."
Fisher brings up a fair point, the new helmet rule is going to likely cost some team a game this year in some manner, whether its by virtue of the clock run-off or just having a player miss a crucial play of the game.
Fisher has instructed the FSU equipment staff to make sure everyone's helmet fits tightly, and to monitor that nobody lets air out or manipulates the helmet to have it fit looser. It may be more comfortable for players, but now it will directly impact the rest of the team.
Also, and this is purely a prediction on my part, but don't be surprised when the first college team outlaws dreadlocks. One of the biggest reasons for helmets flying off heads is that some players with thick hair don't always have the helmets fitted properly. If the difference between a helmet staying securely fastened and a player missing a crucial play after his headgear is ejected is a hairstyle, I doubt it's long before some colleges move to make dreads a thing of the past.
Either way, Fisher is confident somebody will lose a game because of the rule change.
"It will happen to somebody this year," said Fisher. "I think they went way overboard with that rule."