NCAA to continue experimenting with 3-point line

Updated: October 20, 2005, 6:38 PM ET
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS -- The NCAA said Thursday that it will continue to study new dimensions for the 3-point line, a wider lane and a restricted-area arc during certified men's tournaments, such as the Maui Invitational.

In men's basketball, the lane would be widened by a foot rather than the 1½ feet used last season. The arc will be drawn 3 feet from the center of the basket, a foot farther than last season, and the 3-point line will be 20 feet, 9 inches -- a foot longer than the current 3-point line.

The experimental rules could help determine whether permanent rules changes will be implemented in future seasons.

"We need to make sure we've done all of our homework before we make any significant changes," said Larry Keating, chairman of the men's rules committee. "It is not a decision we're taking lightly."

Women's teams will experiment with a longer 3-point line, drawn at 20 feet, 6 inches, for the first time, and the 10-second violation to get the ball across half court. There currently is no 10-second line in women's basketball.

"We believe our players are more than capable of utilizing the 3-point line nine inches further from the basket," said Ronda Seagraves, chairwoman of the women's rules committee. "We need to decide if this is good for our game or not."

The NCAA asks institutions using experimental rules to track 3-point percentages, three-second violations, rebounds from free-throw attempts by lane space, and fouls following free-throw attempts.

The data from last season, according to the NCAA, showed lengthening the 3-point line did not create a significant difference in the number of 3-point shots made, attempted, or in their shooting percentage.

The percentage of offense and defensive rebounds also was consistent with random samples from regular-season games, and there was no significant change in three-second violations or fouls after free throws.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press