In a clear case of culture conflict, the NCAA has announced a new regulation to reduce the length of halftime at college football games. The new rule is designed to help control the overall length of games by enforcing a strict compliance to a maximum of 20 minutes for halftime for all regular season games regardless of division. If the time limit is exceed, a 10-yard penalty would be accessed to the home team by the officials with the option to waive by the visiting team.
In the HBCU world, halftime is very important to fans and reaction to the new rule has been swift and highly critical. Some conferences sought to comply with the time limit by denying visiting bands the opportunity to appear at halftime. This was one reason why the Winston-Salem State band did not travel to Pembroke, NC for its game against UNC Pembroke.
The CIAA has chosen to follow a different path, leaving the decision to the host institution.
While all colleges and universities are navigating the new change, the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) has left halftime and gameday management as the responsibility of the host institution. The updated rule has been acknowledged and discussed by the conference's Athletics Directors Association (ADA), comprised of all 12 member institutions' Directors of Athletics. In a call held today (Thursday-Sept 7), the ADA decided to continue game management on a case-by-case basis and allow the host institution to decide the level of involvement of the visiting teams' bands. The time allowed to visiting teams for pre-game, halftime, and post-game performances will decided by the home team's athletics department.
"The decision whether to allow both bands to play during halftime is at the discretion of individual hosting universities," wrote Commissioner Jacqie McWilliams in an early correspondence to the CIAA Board of Directors. "There will not be any fines associated with the time over runs. Institutions can agree to manage the respective times of participating bands and on-field presentations to meet the required halftime timeline."