Two years into the newly instituted rule that has allowed players to play in up to four games while still being able to redshirt, some changes may be on the way.
According to comments made by West Virginia athletic director Shane Lyons in a WVMetroNews piece, the NCAA rules committee will take another look at the rule based on how some players, and programs have decided to utilize it.
The rule was instituted to get some young guys valuable playing time while still allowing to develop them. The true spirit of the rule was also to benefit guys that get thrust into action for a few games based on an injury. Before the rule was put into action, simply playing in a game would burn the redshirt, so those guys that filled in due to injuries no longer go the benefit of a redshirt season.
However, two years in, some feel the spirit of the rule is being taken advantage of. One recent instance that comes to mind is Houston quarterback D’Eriq King. Head coach Dana Holgorsen and King came to the decision to redshirt the start quarterback after the team stumbled out of the blocks to start the season 1-3. In order to get a fresh start leading the team in 2020, King and Holgo (as well as one other wide receiver), decided to redshirt for the remainder of the 2019 season.
Some players have also decided to enter the transfer portal before playing in four games as well in an attempt to save their eligibility for four full seasons.
From the article:
“I don’t think it’s a good optic for college sports,” Lyons said in an appearance on MetroNews Talkline with Hoppy Kercheval. “The way it looks, a student-athlete is potentially quitting on his team.
“In my role, I’m worried about the 120 guys in the locker room, not just the one individual. In a lot of cases, the one individual is getting a lot of publicity for not playing any further. A lot of that erodes what you’re trying to do in the locker room to build a team. And they’re the ones making a decision rather than a coach determining the playing time of a student-athlete.”
Whether there will be changes to how the current rule can be used, or if it’s scrapped entirely will all be up for discussion come the January rules meeting.