With college football games generally lasting between three and three-and-a-half hours, administrators are trying to find a way to shorten them.
One area of focus? Halftime.
While halftimes are generally 20 minutes, extra time has been allotted in the past for special ceremonies (i.e. Senior Day). That is coming to an end in 2017 as there will be a hard 20-minute break now without exceptions.
Another area included timeouts, per ACC Commissioner John Swofford:
According to ACC commissioner John Swofford, every bit counts. Which means losing what he calls "de facto timeouts" at the start of the third quarter and holding TV partners to their pre-defined commercial time and "not another minute."
"We have a whole new generation coming up that is more constrained time-wise about what they're going to pay attention to," he said. "Baseball is going through it. I saw an article where the NBA is looking for ways to shorten their games. A pitch clock potential in baseball, which would be a significant change to the rules. So we're going to be working on that."
Anytime ways to shorten games in any sport is generally brought, my overall feeling is one of a lack of interest. It's not that games being shortened wouldn't be welcomed but I'm not sure I'll be all that ecstatic if they can shave another 15 minutes off the game.
Watching any game is a commitment. I realize that when I sit down to watch a football game that I'll be there for a while. I can do with out some of the mandatory TV timeouts, etc., but I also go in understanding they're going to be there. And even if they're not there, it's still going to be a pretty big chunk of time.
The biggest benefit for me wouldn't necessarily be that the game is shorter. It could help cut the amount of games that overlap into the next game to start on a particular network. There are few things more annoying than going to a specific channel to watch a game and seeing the earlier game still running. If games are shortened, in theory, that should happen less.