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Thread: Worst rule in sports

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    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Worst rule in sports

    What is your least favorite rule in sports?

    I've been studying the Rules of Golf for my PGA testing, and it just reconfirmed my detest for the out-of-bounds rule. I think it's an unfair rule and I'm actually thinking about writing a letter to the USGA about it (which I know won't do any good). Here are the reasons why I have such a distaste for the rule:

    1) It slows down play - If you didn't know there was out-of-bounds and you find your ball out you have to go all the way back to the previous spot you played from.

    2) It's more penal than whiffing the ball - You could literally whiff the ball, but are penalized less than if you hit the ball 340 yards and are out-of-bounds by a foot. Not fair.

    3) It's more penal than hitting the ball into the middle of a lake - You can blast your ball in the lake, lose the ball, but you get to drop your ball where it last crossed. Yet, when you hit one out-of-bounds by a foot and find your ball, you have to go all the way back to where you last played. Ridiculous.

    4) It goes against how the game was meant to be played - I grew up hearing "play the ball as it lies". Yet, with so many developments around courses this often is not the case. I don't have a huge problem with out-of-bounds bordering a course, but I can't stand in-course out-of-bounds.

    Out-of-bounds is a not a fair rule and it slows down play. Two very bad combinations. There is a simple rule, one already in place, that would cure this outdated rule:

    I would like to see all out-of-bounds treated the same way as "environmentally sensitive areas". Some of you may have played courses that have these areas. They're marked by red stakes with a green top. What they mean is you treat them like a normal lateral water hazard without the option of playing the ball as it lies. You cannot play out of these areas. It's a great rule to protect the environment and golfers in certain situations. And the rule is fair.

    I believe the out-of-bounds rule should be played exactly the same way as environmentally sensitive areas. If you ball is out you take a drop 2 club lengths away from where it last crossed. It's fair and it would speed up play. It would also make the game more natural and fun, IMO.

    Other rules I don't like:

    1) The clock stopping after first downs in college football. Do the games really need to be 4 hours long?
    2) The ground rule double rule with runners on. I think umpires need to be more lenient letting the runners score because many times they have stop at third when they easily would've scored.
    3) Calling timeout while flying through the air. I believe this rule has been changed but I always thought it was ridiculous.
    4) The 10-yard holding penalty in football. I think it should be 5 yards. 10 yards is pretty harsh since the refs could probably call holding on every play in football. 10 yards decimates a drive.
    5) The new fad of icing the kicker at the last second. They need to set a rule in place that you can't call a timeout once everyone lines up or something along those lines.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

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    Member Highlifeman21's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    but I can't stand in-course out-of-bounds
    I'd have to check my decisions book, and cross-reference with the RofG, but I'm almost 100% positive that in-course OB isn't a properly allowable way to mark a course. Basically, you're not allowed to have OB within the course, but rather on the boundaries of the course.

    I remember Fairfield having to change the way they marked their course after numerous Junior Golfers challenged the setup during the Junior Met one year. I don't remember the hole numbers (I wanna say back 9), but there was OB between an uphill dogleg left par 5, and then a downhill dogleg right par 4 with water in front of the green. The OB was nowhere near a boundary, and the reasoning they had it was that if players on either hole hit it into the OB, they wouldn't conflict play on the other hole. Worst reasoning ever. But I remember them removing the OB stakes after the 1st Round, and they certainly weren't there for the 2nd Round. The time frame was between 1995 and 1998.

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    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by Highlifeman21 View Post
    I'd have to check my decisions book, and cross-reference with the RofG, but I'm almost 100% positive that in-course OB isn't a properly allowable way to mark a course. Basically, you're not allowed to have OB within the course, but rather on the boundaries of the course.
    You might be right, I really don't know. If you are right, then it makes certain holes even worse. Four Bridges CC, for example, has in course out-of-bounds to protect golfers from getting killed on the #3 green from the #5 tee box. It's a very poorly designed hole and that's why they put the in-course out-of-bounds in.

    I was also referring to any developments within a golf course. I can't stand it. There's nothing worse than standing on a tee box with out-of-bounds bordering both sides of the holes due to houses. Beckett Ridge and Wetherington are good examples of this. It's hard to play those courses without knocking a shot off a house.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

    www.kylevoska.com - Golfer? Check out my blog for golf tips.

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    Member Highlifeman21's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by Redhook View Post
    You might be right, I really don't know. If you are right, then it makes certain holes even worse. Four Bridges CC, for example, has in course out-of-bounds to protect golfers from getting killed on the #3 green from the #5 tee box. It's a very poorly designed hole and that's why they put the in-course out-of-bounds in.

    I was also referring to any developments within a golf course. I can't stand it. There's nothing worse than standing on a tee box with out-of-bounds bordering both sides of the holes due to houses. Beckett Ridge and Wetherington are good examples of this. It's hard to play those courses without knocking a shot off a house.

    They have developments on both sides of holes @ Blue Ash as well. Makes some of those holes a pain on the back 9. Unfortunately, OB due to a development is a reality, and can't be changed due to poor course design. I guess I tried to use tight courses due to housing developments as a way to practice better course management, but I share your frustration when you're sitting on a tee box, and maybe you're fighting a rope hook, or maybe you're fighting the blocks (which is fun and can happen at the same time) so you have NO idea if your ball is going left or right, and you've got houses on both sides. Awesome feeling.

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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Worst rule in sports is roughing the passer. Not so much the rule but not having a minor version of the penalty like facemask

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    Just The Big Picture macro's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    I hate the basketball rule that requires teams to take free throws when fouled. It encourages the team that's trailing in the score to intentionally commit an infraction, and they often benefit from it.

    Give the fouled team the choice of taking the ball out of bounds again. I know some will argue that free throws are part of the game and part of the skill set, but I would conter that the foul-fests make a mockery of the game and the way it was meant to be played.

    You rarely see the three-second violation called in basketball anymore, but the fact that they used the free throw lane for the boundry used to bug me. A semicircle around the basket would make a lot more sense.

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    Member Highlifeman21's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Roughing the Kicker on a punt is one of my least favorite rules.

    You can't penalize a team for attempting to block a kick and being unsuccessful. Maybe if you hit the punter after his follow through, or if he lands back on the ground after kicking, but if a guy goes to block a kick and misses the ball and immediately runs into the punter after he kicks the ball you shouldn't penalize the D. I know that was a huge run-on, but I don't know how to articulate how to improve this rule, unfortunately.

    Bottomline, there should be a small window of opportunity to make contact with the punter after the ball's been kicked, b/c right now there is none. Ball's off his foot, you hit him, flag. And that sucks.

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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by Highlifeman21 View Post
    Roughing the Kicker on a punt is one of my least favorite rules.

    You can't penalize a team for attempting to block a kick and being unsuccessful. Maybe if you hit the punter after his follow through, or if he lands back on the ground after kicking, but if a guy goes to block a kick and misses the ball and immediately runs into the punter after he kicks the ball you shouldn't penalize the D. I know that was a huge run-on, but I don't know how to articulate how to improve this rule, unfortunately.

    Bottomline, there should be a small window of opportunity to make contact with the punter after the ball's been kicked, b/c right now there is none. Ball's off his foot, you hit him, flag. And that sucks.
    It might be ticky tack but it prevents people from just flat out going at the kickers legs and causing injuries. Now maybe if they made it so it didnt give the kicking team a 1st down that might fix it a little. Like after the kick roughing the kicker 15 yard penalty at the end of the return.

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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Golf has tons of bad rules that need to be updated. On the tour, being DQ'ed for signing an incorrect scorecad, ala Sergio. Do you really need to DQ someone because someone else who kept his score made amistake and the golfer didn't pick up on it?

    Making a player play a ball out of a divot on the fairway. How does it serve the game of golf to penalize a player for hitting the shot they're supposed to hit? And this rule was a significant factor in deciding a US Open when Tom Lehman lost to Steve Jones.

    Not being able to tap down spike marks. This rule makes no sense whatsoever. Players playing in the morning have a distinct advantage on the greens over players playing late. Just seems silly to me not to allow golfers to have as smooth a putting surface as possible. Does it really serve golf to have things like spike marks impact the scores on the course?

    And why does the PGA insist on long pants having to be worn regardless of the temperature? Again, how does it serve the game of golf to have the pros in long pants when it's 95 degrees outside with tons of humidity.
    Last edited by MWM; 01-19-2008 at 11:25 AM.
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    Potential Lunch Winner Dom Heffner's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    I hate the stroke limit on Putt-Putt courses. It cost me a game when I was a kid because my cousin got like 30 strokes taken off his score because it took him that many tries to make the hole with the windmill.

    Sure, he beat me the rest of the way, but nothing can change the fact that it took him that many tries on the one hole. I remember his face lighting up with glee when he read the rule on the score card. "Wait, there's a 6 stroke limit on these holes!!!!!!!"

    I got hosed, I tell ya.

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    part of BBN jmac's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    One I don't like is the NFL guys can do "almost" anything and it is okay after a touchdown but the kids who are playing the game without a paycheck cant have too much celebrating or they get penalized. Almost backwards IMO.

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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Does anybody else prefer the college football rules to the pro's?
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    Matt's Dad RANDY IN INDY's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by macro View Post
    I hate the basketball rule that requires teams to take free throws when fouled. It encourages the team that's trailing in the score to intentionally commit an infraction, and they often benefit from it.

    Give the fouled team the choice of taking the ball out of bounds again. I know some will argue that free throws are part of the game and part of the skill set, but I would conter that the foul-fests make a mockery of the game and the way it was meant to be played.

    You rarely see the three-second violation called in basketball anymore, but the fact that they used the free throw lane for the boundry used to bug me. A semicircle around the basket would make a lot more sense.
    I can hardly watch basketball these days. Another pet peeve of mine is the possession arrow. Awful. Great defense results so many times in giving the ball back to the offense. I have never been a great proponent of the three point shot, either, particularly where it is at the collegiate level. That shot is too easy. Dunking? I don't know what the big deal is. It has become all about "showboating," the individual, and not the "team." Hard for me to watch these days.

    Got a question. Anyone know what the deal is about free throws and why the defensive players are not lining up on the lower block anymore?
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    post hype sleeper cincinnati chili's Avatar
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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by RANDY IN CHAR NC View Post
    basketball these days. Another pet peeve of mine is the possession arrow. Awful.
    I agree. A couple others:

    - I refuse to watch any "shootouts" in hockey or soccer. I'd rather see the games end in a tie or better yet rock, paper, scissors.

    - The balk rule in baseball. It's too arbitrary, and the allowance of the slidestep has taken away the stolen base. The rules need to better define a "full stop" and also prevent the slide step.
    How, then, are those people of the future—who are taking steroids every day—going to look back on baseball players who used steroids? They're going to look back on them as pioneers. They're going to look back at it and say "So what?" - Bill James, Cooperstown and the 'Roids

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    Re: Worst rule in sports

    Quote Originally Posted by cincinnati chili View Post
    I agree. A couple others:

    - I refuse to watch any "shootouts" in hockey or soccer. I'd rather see the games end in a tie or better yet rock, paper, scissors.

    - The balk rule in baseball. It's too arbitrary, and the allowance of the slidestep has taken away the stolen base. The rules need to better define a "full stop" and also prevent the slide step.
    You'd really turn off an FA Cup Final that went to penalties??

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