When I was umpiring local footy in the 90's, we were always told by the umpire coaches that we must pay a free kick if a thirdman goes up. Since then I've always been against the 3rd man up strategy, as I believed that it was important that the ruckman had the opportunity to duel it out at each stoppage.
We were also told that we must pay a free kick if the man on the mark gets shepherded while the player with the football plays on.
That's another rule to be changed. I think umpires just turned a blind eye to it because (free kick) Hawthorn and (Malthouse) Collingwood had it as an integral part of their game plans, and everything has to be OK for those shitstain clubs.
That one I would agree with, if it hasn't cured itself in about another 3 or 4 years.
What's most objectionable about the Rules Committee in recent years is their readiness to change the rules to stamp out some tactic that a few journos have got excited about when it's been used a few times.
The deliberate rushed behind is the classic example. There was one game -- one -- when Richmond in the last quarter deliberately ran the ball through for a point instead of taking a kickout. On the basis of that game alone the rule got changed, but changed in a way that now allows it to be invoked in a whole lot of far different situations. And now it's got to the point where they're introducing this year a whole lot of guidelines about whether the player who puts it through is 8 metres out or 9 metres out and total complex crap like that.
And as for deliberate out of bounds -- the enforcement of that rule is a lottery and a joke.
The shepherding of the man on the mark has been used by Hawthorn quite successfully in the last few years. If it continues to be successful, some opposition coach will work out a way to counter it, and then it will disappear. If nobody has worked out a counter after about 6 or 7 years, and it still seems like a blight on the game, then would be the time to think about a rule change. Not now.