Big Ten Imposes Suspension of Ohio State Football Student-Athlete Kurt Coleman Based on New NCAA Playing Rules

Sept. 28, 2009

The Big Ten Conference office announced today that Ohio State University football student-athlete Kurt Coleman has been suspended for one game as a result of initiating helmet-to-helmet contact and targeting a defenseless opponent in the fourth quarter of Ohio State’s game against Illinois on Sept. 26, 2009.
The NCAA instituted a new football playing rule for the 2009 season mandating a post-game video review by a conference following any flagrant personal fouls, specifically in regards to initiating helmet-to-helmet contact and targeting an opponent. In the 2009-10 NCAA Football Rules and Interpretations, Rule 9-6, Article 2, states “When there is a foul called for initiating contact/targeting an opponent (Rule 9-1-3) that does not result in a player disqualification, there shall automatically be a video review by the conference for possible additional sanctions before the next scheduled game.” Rule 9-1, Article 3.a., states in part that “No player shall initiate contact and target an opponent with the crown (top) of his helmet.” Rule 9-1, Article 3.b., states in part that “No player shall initiate contact and target a defenseless opponent above the shoulders.”

After consultation with NCAA National Coordinator of Officials Dave Parry and Secretary-Rules Editor Rogers Redding and a review of relevant video by Big Ten Coordinator of Officials Bill Carollo, the conference has determined that a one-game suspension is appropriate. The Big Ten Conference supports application of NCAA Rule 9-6 as a way of deterring the targeting of an opponent which poses a risk of injury to defenseless players.

The Big Ten Conference considers this matter concluded and will have no further comment.