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Original Issue

The Question: Do you favor the 24-second rule for college basketball?

ED CONLIN, co-captain
Fordham University
New York, N.Y.
"Certainly. This rule would end the biggest spectator gripe, fouling. The team behind can get the ball without knocking opponents down or committing other fouls. La Salle lost a championship game fouling to get possession when Duquesne was ahead and freezing the ball in the final minutes."

ELLIE CHAYA, cheerleader
St. John's University
Brooklyn, N.Y.
"No. In zone play the defense is very tight. It's tough enough to drive in for a shot. After controlling the ball for 24 seconds, a team would have to give up possession through desperation-shooting. What if a team does freeze the ball? It's good, fast basketball."

University of Connecticut
Storrs, Conn.
"Yes. The 'freeze' in the closing minutes isn't sportsmanship. Coaches are now training specialists in the art of 'freeze-up.' My college has one of the country's best teams, but we froze the ball against Boston University. Their fouls to break the freeze helped us win. That isn't basketball."

Duquesne University
Pittsburgh, Pa.
"No, because of the zone defense rule, in which a player guards another in a specific zone instead of following him all over the floor. If the colleges eliminated the zone defense I'd be in favor of the 24-second rule, but I'm positive the colleges will never eliminate zone defense."

JOE BURNS, sportswriter
Windsor, Ont.
"Yes. This rule would provide more action and keep the ball moving toward the basket all the time. Duke, Yale, Wake Forest, Nebraska, Oklahoma A & M and Niagara recently won games in which they were out-scored on baskets by their opponents because players had to foul to get possession."

Niagara University
Niagara Falls, N.Y.
"Yes, but only for the last three or five minutes of the second half. Not enough shots are made in this time. That's because the team ahead freezes the ball, a major cause of fouls. Niagara has fouled less than any other team in the last two years. The 24-second rule would even reduce our total."

RONALD McPHEE, captain
Columbia University
New York, N.Y.
"Yes. It would prevent boring stalling, freezing and would speed up the game, making it more interesting to watch and play. But there are problems. This rule might cut down a player's drive to intercept passes. Also it might encourage zone defenses which force a shot from the outside."

H. C. BAUJAN, athletic director
Dayton University
Dayton, Ohio
"Yes, definitely. Stalling is one of college basketball's worst offenses. It tends to kill interest in the sport. If the team in possession has to get rid of the ball within 24 seconds, it will speed up the game. It's maddening to have the other team freeze the ball when you're behind."