NCAA Bans ‘Overbuilt’ Facemasks For 2015 Season


Just as they did away with tinted visors and area code eyeblack, the NCAA has kicked ‘overbuilt’ facemasks to the curb.

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Though the rule hit the books in March, talk of the enforcement came up during this week’s SEC Meetings, as coaches were going over new rules and regulations for the upcoming season.

The heavy Bane-like muzzles have become incredibly popular the last few years, with several USC football players opting to wear the new custom facemasks.

Most notably, recent departures Leonard Williams and Hayes Pullard wore the ‘overbuilt’ facemasks as Trojans.

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Current players who have worn the heavy metal either last year or in practice include offensive linemen Zach Banner and Damien Mama, along with redshirt sophomore defensive tackle Kenny Bigelow.

According to the NCAA, the facemasks are a safety issue on multiple levels, having cited concerns over the stress they put on hits and the risk of players getting their fingers caught in the mask.

The NFL banned the masks before the 2014 season for similar reasons, stating that “non-standard facemasks more frequently fail safety and certification tests and aren’t up to NFL safety standards”.

Along with the facemasks, the NCAA announced that it would be banning bare midriffs, which also have seen a rise in popularity the last couple of seasons.

No word whether or not black jerseys for the sake of black jerseys would also be banned.

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