Skip to main content

The NCAA is moving forward with a new set of camp restrictions. Where does it leave the satellite camp industry?

The NCAA is continuing forward with changes to its summer camp calendar that would severely limit coaches' abilities to conduct satellite camp tours as they've done in the past.

The NCAA's Division I Council on Wednesday -- the same group that rubber-stamped the Football Oversight Committee's proposals of moving forward with a December signing period and dropping the June one -- proposed legislation that would reduce the number of approved summer camp days from 30 to 10. (Previously, coaches were allowed to camp over two sets of 15 consecutive days.) Which 10 days are used as camp days are to be decided on a program-by-program basis and do not have to be consecutive.

Additionally, the NCAA is now designating camps as recruiting events rather than instructional, only coaches allowed to recruit off-campus (read: the nine full-time assistants and the head coach) and graduate assistants who have passed their recruiting exams would be permitted to participate in satellite camps.

This means, for instance, Penn State coaches can still participate in Georgia State's camp and recruit for the Nittany Lions, but they cannot send their analysts or quality control assistants. And Michigan's Summer Swarm Tour will have to undergo significant changes. The Wolverines hit 33 different events from June 2-25, only nine of which were on their own or other colleges' campuses.

The rub, as they say, is that coaching staffs would have to be extremely judicious about which camps they visit considering every staff uses its summer camp period to evaluate prospects on its campus.

"We needed to limit the number of days (for camps and clinics) and do things differently than we did before," Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said back in October. "But the best chance for us to manage this is to acknowledge that the summer is about recruiting, not skill development, and to manage it in ways that reflect best on our universities and the process."

As the number of satellite camps ballooned, many head coaches used those opportunities to give their analysts and other off-the-field staffers a chance to get live coaching reps. But now that option is off the table as well.

Of course, a new sets of restrictions is just a new line for Harbaugh and other like-minded boundary-pushing coaches to toe.

Those proposals will now make their way through the NCAA's legislative digestive system before the Council puts it to vote in April.

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.