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Rules for Virginia Tech's spring football game

Virginia Tech's spring football game on Saturday will be played with altered rules. Some of the changes were done in effort to protect the players from injury and others seem to be done for slightly more esoteric reasons.

Unless it is listed below, assume everything else about the game is as normal as a game in the fall.

-- There is no contact allowed on starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor, who will be wearing a yellow jersey. All other quarterbacks, however, will be live. This will mean Logan Thomas and Ju-Ju Clayton, both of whom are vying for the back-up quarterback job, will each have to perform for coaches in game-speed action.

-- The quarters are only 10 minutes long, as opposed to 15 minutes long.

-- No trick plays are allowed. This rule was likely implemented so that coaches could get a good look at some of the younger players in a more natural setting -- after all, it's not every day that Boise State, which the Hokies opens the season with next fall, pulls a Statue of Liberty play to win the Fiesta Bowl (as it did in 2007 over Oklahoma). But still, when it comes to trick plays in the spring game, I say, Why not?

-- Only five men are allowed to rush the passer. One of the most pressing concerns for Virginia Tech is its back-up quarterback situation, which has not clear signs of resolution, so the coaches will surely want a good look at both Thomas and Clayton. Again, here's another one where I say, Why not? I'd prefer to get a look at them when faced with an exotic blitz, just to see how they handle it.

-- In short-yardage situations -- defined as 3-yards or less or inside the 8-yard line -- all defenses are allowed. I believe this to mean a five-man pass rush would be allowed in a short yardage situation.

-- There are one-minute television time outs after each punt.

By Mark Viera  |  April 23, 2010; 1:45 PM ET
 
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