Eight major rule changes have hit college football, most of which were implemented to prevent major injuries. While player safety is always important, many wonder if the new rules are sacrificing the game's integrity.

College Football Rule Changes For 2013 Slideshow


Uniform Numbers Must Contrast Jersey Color

Uniform numbers and uniform color must clearly contrast each other, regardless of the bordering color. Teams cannot wear "black on black" or "white on white" as the colors must clearly contrast each other.


Targeting: Part 1

Targeting, or leading with the crown of the helmet into the opponent's head area, has been penalized for a number of years. But the disciplinary action has steepened. An automatic ejection occurs, plus a 15-yard penalty.


Targeting: Part 2

Part 2 of targeting applies to the defensive side of the ball, as a player can be ejected for "launching" himself into another player's head or neck area.


Offensive Blocking Below The Waist

This rule establishes a zone (seven yards from the sides of the center and five yards into the secondary) where the offense can legally block blow the opponents waist, as long as a player is clearly blocking the front of the defensive player.


Expanding The 10-Second Run-Off Rule

If an injury is the only reason for a clock stoppage at the end of a half, the opponent may opt to take 10 seconds of the clock. The team with the injured player may call a timeout to prevent the 10 seconds from coming off of the clock.


Helmet-Off Rule

A player is no longer forced to miss a down if the player's helmet comes off during play. The team now has an option to call a timeout to avoid missing that player for a down.


3-Second Minimum To Spike The Ball

A team needs at least three seconds on the clock in order to spike the ball and play another down. The three-second minimum creates reasonable time for the additional play.


Changing Jersey Numbers During A Game

Two players may never have the same jersey number during a game, and if a player intends on playing multiple positions with different jersey numbers, he must inform the referee who will announce the change.

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For more information about the rule changes, please see the National Football Foundation's website.

-- Follow Patrick Bates on Twitter @pbates13.

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