GREELY, CO—College football officials are hopeful that the guilty verdict handed down in the case of Mitch Cozad, the North Colorado punter who stabbed punting rival Rafael Mendoza in an attempt to usurp his starting position, will discourage any further punter-on-punter violence. "We're saddened that the court didn't see fit to charge him with attempted punter murder, but we believe that a conviction for second-degree assault of a punter is still a deterrent to those who would do punters harm," said NCAA legal adviser Karl Simonson. "Protecting punters off the field is nearly as important as protecting them on it." Assaulting a punter has been a crime in since 1974 and a felony in every state but Texas since 1997.