The NCAA announced Tuesday that the 2018 National Invitational Tournament (NIT) will “feature experimental rules intended to give the NCAA men’s basketball rules committee, the Division I men’s basketball oversight committee, and the Division I men’s basketball competition committee data as well as feedback to assist in making decisions regarding rules changes.”
This is the third time in four years the NIT will experiment with rules. Changes for next season cannot be implemented until May 2019 at the earliest.
The experimental rules include:
- The three-point line will be extended by approximately 20 inches to the same distance used by FIBA for international competition (22 feet 1.75 inches).
- The free-throw lane will be widened from 12 feet to 16 feet, consistent with the width used by the NBA.
- The games will be divided into four 10-minute quarters, as opposed to two 20-minute halves. Teams will shoot two free throws beginning with the fifth foul of each quarter.
- The shot clock will reset to 20 seconds after an offensive rebound instead of the full 30 seconds.
Previous rules that have been tested in the NIT and implemented include the 30-second shot clock and the four-foot restricted arc.
NCAA senior vice president of basketball Dan Gavitt said, “Experimenting with two significant court dimension rules, a shot-clock reset rule, and a game-format rule all have some level of support in the membership, so the NIT will provide the opportunity to gather invaluable data and measure the experience of the participants.”
He also mentioned the experimental rules are in an effort to keep college basketball play “... contemporary and trending favorably.”
The NIT starts March 13, with the championship taking place March 29 at Madison Square Garden.