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NCAA bat testing


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Compression testing is required for D1, as well as the visual inspection and ring test. D2 and D3 don't require the compression test until next year.

But who conducts the tests, whichever ones are required? Will someone confirm for me whether or not umpires are supposed to conduct the visual bat testing / inspection before an NCAA game? And a reference to a specific NCAA document (like something on Arbiter, for example) would be much appreciated.

We had some confusion around this issue this weekend.

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Yeah, I had read that, and thought the same thing (umpires are not mentioned, only "representatives from both teams and a site representative"). I'm trying to figure out why someone would think the umpires do it.

I'm hoping for some explicit statement that says "umpires conduct the inspection" or "umpires do not conduct the inspection". I know I have heard it said that we do not conduct the testing, but I wanted to be able to point to a specific document (written, video, etc) that explicitly says it one way or another.

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NCAA rule book specifically says in the same paragraph about bat testing that umpires must confirm with coaches that they are using legal equipment.

We wouldn’t need to do that if we were the ones who tested them.

I know that isn’t as specific as you wanted, but a sound argument nonetheless 

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Here are the rules that Mr. SHO cited and the key bit of text from the document he linked to--

2019-2020 NCAA rule 4

Pregame Meeting

SECTION 4. Ten minutes before the scheduled starting time, the umpire-in-chief shall conduct the pregame meeting with the representatives of the opposing teams. The head coach, during the first game of a weekend series or any nonconference game, must attend the pregame plate conference. During this meeting, the umpire-in-chief shall:

c. Receive confirmation from the head coach or his representative that playing equipment meets NCAA rules and regulations.

Bat Barrel Compression Testing

SECTION 10. Beginning with the 2020 NCAA Championship segment for Division I and the 2021 NCAA Championship segment for Divisions II and III, baseball bat barrel compression testing will be conducted prior to each regular season series or single date of competition. All bats used in competition must pass the barrel ring test and barrel compression testing. Barrel compression minimum standards for bats produced with specific materials are developed by the certification laboratory and will be published with the list of approved baseball bats.


What defines a “team representative” for the purpose of bat testing? Can this be an injured student-athlete, athletic trainer, manager, administrator, etc.? The playing rule intentionally did not list specific individuals that can be a “team representative.” It is the responsibility of the team to ensure that their bats are properly tested.

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Yup - it seems everything is implied that umpires do not conduct the testing. I think the best support comes from "A best practice would be for teams to sticker their opponent’s bats to verify that testing was conducted with both teams present" and Senor's point that we ask coaches to confirm legal equipment, which we wouldn't have to do if we had done the testing.

Thanks for helping me clarify on this, gents.

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Legally checked bats have a sticker placed on them by each institution around the 18 inch mark. We have to ask in pregame on every NCAA level if all are legally equipped per NCAA rules and regulations so if a bat comes up in the game without a sticker, then I would assume it is not legal for that contest due to not being checked or a failure. Then I would take appropriate action per the rule book for an illegal bat. Of course this only applies to DI this year and II and III next year.

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