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NCAA Makes 2 Huge Rule Changes

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NCAA approves 'notification-of-transfer' model, coaches can no longer block players

By James Crepea

Nick Saban and Gus Malzahn will no longer be allowed to block players from transferring to other schools.

In a highly-anticipated move, the NCAA Division I Council adopted a proposal that will allow Division I athletes to transfer freely and receive a scholarship elsewhere without needing to ask their current school for permission.

The new "notification-of-transfer" model, which will go into effect Oct. 15, will allow an athlete to inform their current school of a desire to transfer and requires that school to enter the athlete into a national transfer database within two business days. Once the athlete is in the database, coaches elsewhere are free to contact them.

The new rule also makes tampering with a current athlete at another school a Level 2 violation, which is considered a significant breach of conduct.

"The membership showed today that it supports this significant change in transfer rules," South Dakota State athletic director and chair of the Division I Transfer Working Group Justin Sell said in a statement. "I'm proud of the effort the Transfer Working Group put forth to make this happen for student-athletes, coaches and schools."

The existing "permission to contact" transfer model was designed to prevent tampering and recruiting of athletes from other schools, but became a tool coaches used to prevent athletes from transferring to other schools.

Both Saban and Malzahn have drawn scrutiny for imposing such restrictions in recent years.

During SEC Spring Meetings last month, Saban gave an impassioned defense of enforcing the previous rules and of Alabama's current blocking of graduate transfer offensive lineman Brandon Kennedy from going to his preferred schools of Auburn and Tennessee as well as the rest of the SEC. Kennedy's latest appeal to Alabama was denied last month.

In 2016, Alabama blocked linebacker Maurice Smith from going to Georgia, but SEC commissioner Greg Sankey granted him waiver to play immediately.

Last year, Malzahn blocked defensive tackle Antwuan Jackson Jr. from transferring elsewhere in the SEC, Clemson and Ohio State. After a year in junior college, Jackson enrolled at Ohio State in the winter.

"I think they still have to sit out a year, that's the big thing," Malzahn said at SEC Spring Meetings. "If you transfer, I agree with that (having to sit out as an undergraduate)."

Conferences can still make rules that are more restrictive than the new national rule. The SEC passed legislation earlier this month that will allow graduate students to transfer freely within the conference without having to sit out a year in residence.

NCAA president Mark Emmert previously called the ability for schools to restrict transfers an "inappropriate level of control" that "never made sense" to him.

The NCAA Transfer Working Group introduced the proposal last fall and will continue work on other transfer-related issues, including graduate transfers.

The Power 5 conferences will vote next week on proposals that will allow schools to cancel financial aid to athletes once they inform their current school of their intention to transfer at the end of an academic term.

 

 

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NCAA approves 4-game redshirt rule for college football

Starting this fall college football players will now be able to take part in up to four games and still keep their redshirt.

The NCAA Division I Council approved the proposed (2017-17) four-game redshirt rule, which was tabled in April, on Wednesday. It applies to both the FBS and FCS beginning this season.

The change will allow players to maintain a year of eligibility in the event of injuries of other factors require them to play and opens the door to greater development earlier in a players' college career.

The new rule will have the greatest impact on true freshmen as they get acclimated later in the season, players recovering from offseason injuries that might otherwise miss a whole year and players who were going to redshirt but would've lost a year of eligibility late in the season due to a lack of depth and injuries at their position.

"This change promotes not only fairness for college athletes, but also their health and well-being," NCAA Division I Council chair and Miami athletic director Blake James said in a statement. "Redshirt football student-athletes are more likely to remain engaged with the team, and starters will be less likely to feel pressure to play through injuries. Coaches will appreciate the additional flexibility and ability to give younger players an opportunity to participate in limited competition."

American Football Coaches Association executive director Todd Berry lobbied for the redshirt rule change for years and reiterated it had "unanimous" support from the coaches.

Berry was extremely optimistic about the proposal's chances following the AFCA Convention in January, was less positive in March and cautious in April, when the proposal was tabled over questions about timing, the number of games and potential application to other sports.

To address one specific concern, the Council specified that midyear enrollees cannot use the exception to play a bowl game before their first academic term.

The Division I Student-Athlete Experience Committee will examine how a similar rule could be applied to other sports and will consult with the Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, according to the NCAA.

 

 

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I'm pushing for a rule where, if you're really good, you can only transfer to Auburn and if you suck, you HAVE to transfer to bammer.  Also addendum A.. if you're already at Auburn and are really good you have to stay for 6 years. :beer2:

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Is one play considered a game?  So basically they still have 5 years to play 4-1/3 years.

The transfer rule is long overdue.  It is what is best for the student athlete which is what college athletics is supposed to do.  

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1 minute ago, AUsince72 said:

I'm pushing for a rule where, if you're really good, you can only transfer to Auburn and if you suck, you HAVE to transfer to bammer.  Also addendum A.. if you're already at Auburn and are really good you have to stay for 6 years. :beer2:

Finally, ADsince72 has this thing headed in the right direction. 

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1 minute ago, around4ever said:

Is one play considered a game?  So basically they still have 5 years to play 4-1/3 years.

The transfer rule is long overdue.  It is what is best for the student athlete which is what college athletics is supposed to do.  

Preach.

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2 minutes ago, AUsince72 said:

I'm pushing for a rule where, if you're really good, you can only transfer to Auburn and if you suck, you HAVE to transfer to bammer (for 6 years)  Also addendum A.. if you're already at Auburn and are really good you have to stay for 6 years. :beer2:

The 6 year plan should factor in for Bama too. 😁

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10 minutes ago, gr82be said:

The 6 year plan should factor in for Bama too. 😁

Thank you for the assist.  You're definitely rules board material!!

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The key to the transfer rule is the NCAA really enforcing the contact rule. If they are lax on that, then the less scrupulous coaches with booster networks who are skilled at getting away with breaking the rules are going to start dynasty building with transfers.

As for the red shirt rule, it's a solid step in the right direction. It may be a huge boon for us with Amen Corner, since we can replenish the roster for the last 4 games of the season (or 2 games and 2 post season games), and maybe even throw in a few surprises.

 

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22 minutes ago, lionheartkc said:

maybe even throw in a few surprises.

I bet Gus has his Joey-Cat plays near the goal line ready to go & is salivating about it.

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28 minutes ago, lionheartkc said:

The key to the transfer rule is the NCAA really enforcing the contact rule. If they are lax on that, then the less scrupulous coaches with booster networks who are skilled at getting away with breaking the rules are going to start dynasty building with transfers.

As for the red shirt rule, it's a solid step in the right direction. It may be a huge boon for us with Amen Corner, since we can replenish the roster for the last 4 games of the season (or 2 games and 2 post season games), and maybe even throw in a few surprises.

 

I don't understand how the contact and communication lines are supposed to work.

Who has to initiate contact to even inquire about a possible transfer, the player?  A kid isn't getting PT on his current squad - he wants to play more and contribute, is it up to the player or his parents to take the time look at rosters at other programs and contact the coaching staff?  Does that open the door for unlimited communication both ways?

I mean to know where you want to transfer, you have to know if they'll take you and will you get better opportunities to play ball.

Edited by keesler

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4 minutes ago, keesler said:

Who has to initiate contact to even inquire about a possible transfer, the player? 

The player just tell his school as it states in the article. A different staff can't reply without a formal request submitted.

5 minutes ago, keesler said:

Does that open the door for unlimited communication both ways?

If the player makes a formal request to the NCAA to transfer I think it's unlimited at that point anyway.

9 minutes ago, keesler said:

I mean to know where you want to transfer, you have to know if they'll take you and will you get better opportunities to play ball.

You don't have to know where you want to go ahead of time. You can submit a request & open the door for all comers.

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I don't like that they will be put into a database for all coaches to look at.  Seems like it really opens Pandora's box.

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6 minutes ago, AUatHeart said:

I don't like that they will be put into a database for all coaches to look at.  Seems like it really opens Pandora's box.

Not necesarrily. Transfers still count to a team's yearly new schollied player limit. Some teams won't have room to add a transfer if they have signed a full class.

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I love this . Hated the idea of blocking transfers. That is petty. We also get the redshirt rule, thank heavens. I better see home hybrid TE within the first four games now.

Edited by DAG
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26 minutes ago, AUatHeart said:

I don't like that they will be put into a database for all coaches to look at.  Seems like it really opens Pandora's box.

At that point, the player has already made his decision to leave. Let them look, says I. Besides, we're talking almost exclusively about players who couldn't get on the field here.

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43 minutes ago, ellitor said:

The player just tell his school as it states in the article. A different staff can't reply without a formal request submitted.

If the player makes a formal request to the NCAA to transfer I think it's unlimited at that point anyway.

You don't have to know where you want to go ahead of time. You can submit a request & open the door for all comers.

So a player that may want to transfer because he wants more PT, won't know which program has room at his position or if they will use him at all until be submits a formal request to his current school and the NCAA?

He's basically putting himself on the free market, giving up his current scholarship, room/board, meals, monthly stipend, etc. AND playing position on his current roster to solicit any takers that may want his services?  And if there are no takers, he could be screwed in the end without anywhere to go.  

From a parent's standpoint, the whole scenario sounds awfully risky to me.  I'd want some assurances on the front end before I allowed my son to put his neck on the line and end up with nowhere to go.  And if no one wants him, I can't imagine the coaching staff would look favorable at him if he didn't get picked up.  

Edited by keesler

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52 minutes ago, keesler said:

I don't understand how the contact and communication lines are supposed to work.

Who has to initiate contact to even inquire about a possible transfer, the player?  A kid isn't getting PT on his current squad - he wants to play more and contribute, is it up to the player or his parents to take the time look at rosters at other programs and contact the coaching staff?  Does that open the door for unlimited communication both ways?

I mean to know where you want to transfer, you have to know if they'll take you and will you get better opportunities to play ball.

Per the new rule, a player formally requests a transfer from the school. At that point the school has 2 days to get them on a list of transfer athletes. Once on that list, the communication lines are completely open. If not on that list, they are locked up tight. The issues is coaches like some we know of will see players they like and try to find ways to contact them to let them know the "benefits" of jumping ship. After all, once they are in college, you have a lot better chance of knowing what you are going to get. It's also a great way of sticking it to your rivals to steal their talent.

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Just now, keesler said:

So a player that may want to transfer because he wants more PT, won't know which program has room at his position or if they will use him at all until be submits a formal request to his current school and the NCAA?

He's basically putting himself on the free market, giving up his current scholarship, room/board, meals, monthly stipend, etc. AND playing position on his current roster to solicit any takers that may want his services?  And if there are no takers, he could be screwed in the end without anywhere to go.  

Yea, that's pretty much it. Honestly it seems pretty fair. The point if transferring is if you really aren't happy where you are, not because you had buyers remorse over a school you liked better. That scenario has happened before. See our freshmen who bailed for South Carolina to follow Boom/T-Rob, only to find himself in juco and, eventually, at Louisville when Boom decided he didn't want him.

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50 minutes ago, AUatHeart said:

I don't like that they will be put into a database for all coaches to look at.  Seems like it really opens Pandora's box.

 

42 minutes ago, ellitor said:

Not necesarrily. Transfers still count to a team's yearly new schollied player limit. Some teams won't have room to add a transfer if they have signed a full class.

And, as Gus said, the player still has to sit out a year (unless he's a grad transfer)..

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4 minutes ago, keesler said:

So a player that may want to transfer because he wants more PT, won't know which program has room at his position or if they will use him at all until be submits a formal request to his current school and the NCAA?

If a player wants to leave they will make the request. Most of the time they are unhappy enough to just want to be out of where they are.  They don't have to have all the answers to those questions, or any of them for that matter, to know they want to transfer. Once they make the request to transfer they will find out the answers to those questions as schools recruit them.

9 minutes ago, keesler said:

e's basically putting himself on the free market, giving up his current scholarship, room/board, meals, monthly stipend, etc. AND playing position on his current roster to solicit any takers that may want his services?  And if there are no takers, he could be screwed in the end without anywhere to go.  

With all due respect you are way over thinking this IMO. For kids wanting to transfer from a P5 school there will be takers. For kids blowing up at a G5 school there will be takers.

 

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52 minutes ago, AUatHeart said:

I don't like that they will be put into a database for all coaches to look at.  Seems like it really opens Pandora's box.

You can bet that any coaches who would be interested are well aware of who is available even without a database. The only purpose of the database is that it ensures that the schools are all cooperating with the rule and not hiding that a kid asked for a transfer.

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12 minutes ago, lionheartkc said:

Per the new rule, a player formally requests a transfer from the school. At that point the school has 2 days to get them on a list of transfer athletes. Once on that list, the communication lines are completely open. If not on that list, they are locked up tight. The issues is coaches like some we know of will see players they like and try to find ways to contact them to let them know the "benefits" of jumping ship. After all, once they are in college, you have a lot better chance of knowing what you are going to get. It's also a great way of sticking it to your rivals to steal their talent.

Hate to tell ya but that goes on now any way through back channels. Very hard to stop.

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3 minutes ago, triangletiger said:

 

And, as Gus said, the player still has to sit out a year (unless he's a grad transfer)..

Very important point for now. There is talk though to let undergrads transfer without siting out if they meet some academic standard like a 3.0 for example.

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As far as the four game rule is concerned, are there any restrictions on which 4 games in a season a player plays in?  Could it be any random 4 games (i.e, the 2nd, 5th, 7th, and 10th games), or the last 4 games of the season?      

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