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Rice's Wayne Graham: College Baseball "Out of Balance"

Legendary Rice baseball coach Wayne Graham says the time is now to address the lack of offense in NCAA play.Legendary Rice baseball coach Wayne Graham says the time is now to address the lack of offense in NCAA play.Rice baseball coach Wayne Graham sent a letter Friday to several national college baseball writers and leaders of the sport – including current LSU coach Paul Mainieri and former LSU coach Skip Bertman – that calls for immediate action to fix a lack of offense in the college game.

On the heels of a College World Series that featured just three home runs, "the college game is now officially out of balance," Graham wrote. His solution? Not to move in fences at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, but to change the ball used in the college game.

"This can be rectified by adopting a ball with the same life as the major league ball," Graham continued. "Make no mistake. A ball can be made at a reasonable cost with the same 'life' as the major league ball. This has already been done."

The "life" of the baseball used in the college game is partially due to a raised seam. In all levels of professional baseball, a flat-seam baseball is used. Some have suggested a fly ball hit with a flat-seam ball would travel as much as 4 percent further than a raised-seam ball.

Graham wants action taken immediately.

"TV revenues and attendance are going to diminish over time if we do not restore the entire entertainment value to our product," he wrote. "This needs to be done immediately, even to the point of emergency meetings. Every coach I have talked to wants this. Fans I have talked to tell me that after a few games they became bored with the type of baseball played at the College World Series."

It would take the emergency meeting that Graham suggests to make any rules changes. The NCAA baseball rules committee cannot act on rules changes until the summer of 2014 at the earliest, with rules put into effect for the 2015 season.

 
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