An NCAA rule will give the Alabama football team unlimited practice time while limiting Clemson to only four hours of practice time per day before the national championship game.
The NCAA limits teams from practicing or meeting for more than 20 hours per week — or four hours a day — during a university’s semester, ESPN reports. Clemson’s spring semester starts Jan. 6, while Alabama’s spring semester doesn’t begin until Jan. 13. The national championship game is Jan. 11 in Glendale, Ariz.
Clemson could get in some extra practice time after the four-hour limit if the practices and team activities are voluntary, but then coaches wouldn’t be allowed by the NCAA to participate. (VIDEO: Watch Clemson Celebrate Punching A Ticket To The National Championship)
This isn’t the first time that the practice rule has been different for two teams set to compete against each other.
Last year, Oregon was limited in practice time before ultimately losing to Ohio State in the national championship, and one Ohio State player even acknowledged that the unlimited practices were an advantage. (VIDEO: Prepare For The College Football Playoffs By Watching Nick Saban Get Really Mad)
“I would say the one thing that was advantageous to us was we weren’t worried about getting a new syllabus or shaking a professor’s hand and trying to figure things out for a semester. Is that a huge advantage? No, because you go the whole season doing the same thing anyway. You’re in class and you’ve got to game plan,” Ohio State linebacker Joshua Perry told ESPN.