The NCAA rules committee released a bulletin on Wednesday that, among other things, banned the use of hash tags and URLs on football fields.
The move is aimed at stamping out all forms of advertising from the field, such as this hash tag in Mississippi State's end zone:
From the bulletin:
Only these items are allowed:
College/university name and logo
Team name and logo
Name of the commercial entity with purchased naming rights to the
facility in no more than two locations (Note: the entity's commercial
logo is not allowed.)
Postseason game: Name/commercial logo of only the title sponsor
associated with the name of the postseason game. There may be a
maximum of three such advertisements: a single advertisement
centered on the 50-yard line and no more than two smaller flanking
advertisements. These advertisements must adhere to paragraph 2
below. No other advertisements, either by the title sponsor or by any
other commercial entity, may be on the field.
All other items, including social media designations such as URL's and hashtags, are
The use of hashtags hasn't exactly reached epidemic proportions of late. Mississippi State added a hashtag last fall to commemorate the 2000 "Snow Bowl" with Texas A&M. Michigan painted #goblue at each of its 25-yard lines, and Arkansas added #GOHOGS to its field. But most schools have been slow to take advantage of such social media tools. No matter -- these endeavors have now been nipped in the bud by the NCAA.
The bulletin didn't only deal with social media. The NCAA also addressed advertising on pylons (it must not extend more than three inches on either side!), the color of jersey numerals (they must clearly contrast with the jersey!), the size of towels (must be solid white and measure no larger than 6" x 12"!) and tinted eye shields (no longer allowed!). Also, cameras of all kinds are prohibited from team areas.