Have you heard of the new “mercy rule” in kid’s football? Basically, it is supposed to keep youth game scores artificially low by preventing more powerful teams from winning by lopsided margins.

Robert Rochin, deputy commissioner for the Northern California Federation of Youth Football league, told KCRA-TV. “If they are constantly getting beat, who wants to play anymore? We lose kids all season long because of that.” He says some teams often ignored the mercy rule in years past and received only warnings after violations. So from now on, mercy will be in effect. The penalties, if a team is leading by more than 28 points at halftime, KCRA reported that the first-string team from the winning squad must sit on the bench so the second- and third-string teams get more playing time (and presumably help to even out the score…or at least stop it from increasing). In addition to that, the NCFYF has added teeth to the mercy rule this season for its age 7 to 13 teams, instituting a $200 fine for squads that win games by 35 points or more and a one-week suspension for violating teams’ head coaches, according to KCRA.

Dave Briggs, NBC Sports

NBC Sports’ Dave Briggs called the move the latest chapter in the “wussification of America” and a “ridiculous rule,” saying it teaches “lesser teams that there’s always someone there to cushion to blow.”

But league brass beg to differ.

“It’s teaching them compassion for the other team,” Rochin said. “It’s teaching them sportsmanship.”

Proponents say it also helps “create a level playing field” when there’s a disparity of talent between opposing teams, KCRA reported.

Do you think that the teams should be made to obey these guidelines, or is it more of the 'wussification' of America?