ABig 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby this spring fronted the NCAA’s effort to wrap its arms around the ever-growing recruiting staffs in college football. “I think that door has been open for a while,” Bowlsby said in April. “We’re seeing very large staff. We see non-coaching personnel doing coaching duties. It is one of our two priorities for the Football Oversight Committee for the coming year … looking at personnel and how personnel should be deployed in the football coaching staff environment.”
The Division I Football Oversight Committee has spent the year clanging its collective heads together, and the end result is as confusing and as typically NCAA as you can get.
Here’s the gist of it: schools would now be required to designate 30 individuals that can participate in on-campus recruiting activities. This includes the ability to “initiate written and electronic correspondence with prospective student-athletes, their parents or legal guardians.” All 30 of those individuals would be required to take and pass the NCAA recruiting exam each year.
That list of 30 people would have to be signed and certified by the athletics director before the first day of fall camp, who would then send the list to the NCAA.
Included in the release is this quote from Bowlsby, who completely contradicts the entire point of the rule.
“We feel we have reinforced the rules that are already on the books,” said Bowlsby, the Football Oversight Committee’s chairman. “The head coach, the soon to be 10 assistants and the four graduate assistants are the people who are supposed to be coaching student-athletes, preparing them for the game and doing the recruiting.”
The head coach, his 10 assistants and four GAs are supposed to be doing the recruiting — but also 15 more people can do the recruiting, too.
If approved, the new rule would go into effect on Aug. 1 of next year.
Additionally, the Division I Council has introduced a new rule that would standardize preseason practice as beginning 25 days before a team’s first game. This does not include one off day per week, so a team playing its first game on Sept. 1 could hold its first practice on Aug. 3.
We’ve posted the entire release below for your convenience.
Staff sizes among Football Bowl Subdivision programs could have new parameters if legislation introduced into the 2017-18 cycle by the Division I Council is adopted.
The proposal would require schools to designate 30 individuals who will participate in on-campus football recruiting activities in FBS. If passed, the proposal would become effective Aug. 1, 2018.
Those individuals would be able to initiate written and electronic correspondence with prospective student-athletes, their parents or legal guardians.
The number of designated individuals would include all countable coaches, which currently are the head coach and nine assistants but will increase to 10 assistants Jan. 9. It also would include all graduate assistant coaches. FBS schools are allowed a maximum of four graduate assistants in football.
Each school would be required to declare those designations before its first preseason practice. Directors of athletics would be required to review the written submissions and send a signed copy to the school’s conference office.
Schools could make changes to the designations only because of attrition, and any change would require the approval of the director of athletics.
Under the proposal, all designees would be required to pass the NCAA recruiting exam every year before engaging in any recruiting activities.
The Division I Football Oversight Committee will gather feedback from head coaches, directors of athletics, compliance administrators, conference offices and other groups during the 2017-18 legislative cycle. The committee plans to review that feedback at its next in-person meeting in January.
“We feel we have reinforced the rules that are already on the books,” said Bob Bowlsby, chair of the Football Oversight Committee and commissioner of the Big 12 Conference. “The head coach, the soon to be 10 assistants and the four graduate assistants are the people who are supposed to be coaching student-athletes, preparing them for the game and doing the recruiting.”
The Council also introduced legislation that would establish a new start date for preseason football practice.
If adopted, teams could calculate the start of practice by counting back 25 days from their first game of the season. The 25 days would not include a scheduled day off once a week.
For example, a team playing its first game Sept. 1, 2018, could hold its first practice Aug. 3.
Feedback from the American Football Coaches Association influenced the oversight committee’s decision to propose 25 as the right number of practices to prepare for the season.
“We were also talking about the 14-week standardized season, but it became apparent that it was going to be an impediment in our efforts to keep all the practices in August,” Bowlsby said. “We didn’t want practices taking place in July and conflicting with the end of summer school.”
The earliest the Council could vote on the two football proposals would be January.