Back in late June, we told you about an NCAA proposal that could mean the end of early verbal commitments.

The proposal, which would ban Division I recruits from verbally committing to a college prior to July 1 before their senior year, picked up support earlier this year after a 13-year-old middle-school student verbally committed to play football at USC.

College coaches would also have to obtain a recruit’s grades over five semesters or seven quarters to make sure he or she is on course to be eligible.

Here’s a quick update on where the proposal stands right now.

Presidents from all 31 Division I conferences are expected to vote on the proposal in January 2011, with a two-thirds majority necessary for the measure to be enacted immediately. A simple majority will table the resolution for further discussion in April 2011. Votes from colleges that offer Division I-A football as well as other sports will be weighted more heavily than the votes of colleges that don’t.

Be sure to weigh in with your thoughts on the proposal and how it will impact players and college programs.

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20 Responses to “Update on NCAA early recruit commitment proposal”

  1. we'll see about this says:

    I don’t think I’m too crazy about the votes of DI-A football programs being weighted, but they are the ones who carry the water for the rest, so I see where it’s coming from.

  2. Kennedy Turf says:

    Big News From Kennedy Catholic Today they will have Turf field for this season.

    They are starting const. in two weeks…

    Also the softball field is getting Turf.

  3. Mark says:

    Of course it’s football driven. Everything in college sports is, including all the conference realignments. Still a good proposal I think.

  4. Laxtime says:

    I have a feeling this is not going to go through. I feel like the big football programs like the USCs will continue to strong arm the NCAA into doing what they want when they want. If it means getting a verbal from a 13 year old, so be it.

  5. LI Guy says:

    That would be a shame if true because lax really needs this to go through.

  6. Lax Novice says:

    A reading of the proposal seems to show that for men’s lacrosse recruits this initiative would have relatively little impact on the current issues facing schools and prospects. For one thing, the “verbal commitment” that the proposal seeks to limit is the financial aid (scholarship) offer by the institution to the prospect. Therefore, the “verbal” that lacrosse players are now making that reads, e.g., “I’m going to Duke.” won’t change one iota. As I understand it, the verbal that are now made public refers only to the school choice of the prospect with the schools assent. Presumably with the limited resources for athletic scholarships for lacrosse no committment of dollars is made by any school during this early period of making committments (that is, the period prior to making actual applications for admission), so the other restrictions in this measure wouldn’t apply to most men’s lacrosse programs.

    This measure is meant to apply to all sports, but is intended to affect revenue sports like football and basketball. What would be interesting is to see how such a program would be able to show that a prospect is making academic progress for admission over five semesters by virtue of their HS transcript when its been apparent for decades that the vast majority of recruits in these revenue sports have academic profiles well below those of the average freshman student-athlete, never mind average student.

    Nonetheless, my point is that as it relates to the verbal committment being made by members of the Class of 2011 and now 2012 by mens lacrosse prospects, this initiative wouldn’t affect their ability to make those non-binding commitments public at all, the only exception being those NCAA Division 1 members making offers of athletic scholarship aid, which as we all understand are relatively few now in lacrosse and would likely either go away or be considered a TBD under this proposal.

    Seems like much ado about nothing in my view.

  7. shakespearre's buddy says:

    I agree with Lax Novice…
    much ado about nothing.

    The lack of money in lacrosse limits the impact of a rule like this and makes it an unnecessary rule.

    Players will still be free to commit to any school they choose.
    Verbal commitments are non-binding on either party.
    Players cannot sign NLI as underclassman as it is now and this will not change that.
    Lax players, generally speaking, are proficient enough students to maintain “progress” (toward the top of their class. lol.)
    Schools will still be free to allocate their scholarship money in the way they do now.

    D3 schools do not offer money at all, so this is moot for them all around.

    As Novice pointed out, this rule is specifically targeted at football and basketball. They include all sports to maintain consistency across the board.

    Maybe someday, if schools start offering players “other” incentives to come play for them then it becomes necessary, but for now it is a non-factor.

    Did we miss anything?

  8. slacrosse says:

    Lax Novice,

    Good analysis.

    Agree with LI Guy. Hope it does end up with more teeth. I know these are very good schools to attend but i think these young kids should have more “breathing space” to ponder their potential choices and not get any pressure to make a verbal. The slots will still be there.

  9. lax is fine says:

    Just another example of the NCAA puffing up its own importance because some people are afraid that signing young players “looks bad,” so they’re stepping in to show how compassionate they are. Bureaucracy in action.

    According to the NCAA article:

    “Some coaches in high-profile sports have extended scholarship offers to prospects as early as eighth grade, and members of the Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee voiced concerns about the ethics of such tactics at the 2010 NCAA Convention.

    Cabinet chair Petrina Long, senior associate athletics director at UCLA, said the group heard from coaches – and prospects and their families – who felt pressured to make decisions earlier without the necessary academic qualifications or information. The media attention on such offers also pressured coaches who felt they needed to “keep up” or lose out on potentially outstanding prospects, Long said.””

    How many coaches, parents and players, Petrina? Hearsay sure is convenient when you’re trying to build the importance of your committee. How many? 100? 500? How about 3 or maybe 1? Is it one Petrina? She’s the “senior associate athletics director” at UCLA, which means they have at least two associate athletic directors…Bureaucracy in action.

    Ah and then she mentions “media attention,” that pressured coaches to try to “keep up”…well, yeah Katrina…it’s competitive.

    If two parties want to make a contract, in this case the player’s parents/guardians and the school, they do not need permission from a third party to do so, but that’s according to the Constitution and we all know we don’t follow that anymore.

    Rules like this have no impact at all on lacrosse, swimming, track and the other non-revenue sports. By giving a non-binding verbal commitment to a school, a player is saying, ‘I promise I’ll come to your school…unless something better comes along.’

    If the NCAA disappeared tomorrow, the sports you watch on TV would not change one iota, lacrosse would not change one iota and schools would set their own criteria for student athletes.

    And by the way, you can call, email, write letters and visit, but you better not send a text message that’s over the top! lol.

    The best thing the NCAA could do is to commit institutional suicide. lol.

  10. Dennis Dunaway says:

    Isn’t there an index for admission to D1 schools for football and basketball that basically allows very substandard academic, but very talented athletic students, to attend these schools – and that indexing is not permitted in other sports? The D1 Lacrosse staff I am familiar with mentioned this, and it was an honor they held high that the Lacrosse team GPA was tops among all sports, and that the incoming freshman recruits, as a class, were always measured as a group as to SAT average and GPA – clearly there were goals set by the AD or the staff for those metrics. Not so much football and basketball I am sure. This measure or issue is more up to parents and athletes to monitor and manage than it is for some NCAA bureaucracy to impose. I mean, really, what parents of a 9th grade athlete could possibly see it a good thing that their kid is “committed” to college with up to FOUR more season of the sport to still play before he sets foot on a college campus?

  11. thank you all says:

    Thank you all for illuminating and insightful posts. It just shows how far ahead this blog is from all the others.

    I also agree with, Lax is Fine, if the NCAA disappeared tomorrow, lacrosse would be fine and Dennis in post 10 also mentions the bureaucracy.

    People can talk all they want about lax being a “northeastern establishment” game, and if it’s true it is a moniker we should wear proudly. Just look at the schools these players go to and the academics and resumes they bring with them…any AD in the country would be proud of this level of achievement.

    And I might add, that parents are happy to send their children there with little or no athletic money. I suspect that many of these players would wind up in the same schools they choose even if they were offered money at a lesser academic institution.

    If it was up to me they would all be MCLA programs!. Lol.

  12. OH Boy! says:

    WestRock Now having tryouts!!!! No Excuses. Sept 26th. Bring your Back-up stick!!

  13. SirLaxalot says:

    The reality is this rule, if enacted, will have huge ramifications. As we know, often huge changes occur in development of players between age 15 or 16 and 17 or 18. Some players as juniors get much better. Others don’t improve. By having to wait until entering senior year, many players who would have received offers a year earlier won’t. Others who wouldn’t have will now receive them.

  14. i see says:

    Great point, SirLaxalot.

    That will at least open the doors to big time programs for solid players who come from small high school programs because it will do away with alot of marginal players from big time programs who now wind up at big programs because of the high schools they attend.

    The cream of the crop will remain the cream of the crop, but level B and level C will open up dramatically.

  15. Lax Novice says:

    As the link to the article explains, the initiative does nothing to limit the ability of schools to offer places to recruits, period, unless athetic scholarships are promised by the school. No school will be required to wait to make offers to join their programs and neither are they restricted from demanding that a prospective student-athlete decide to commit within a time frame that suits the school before that spot is offered (if it wasn’t already) to any number of other prospects. John Jay midfielder Jake Weil, for example, could give his verbal to Dartmouth any time, because he will not be receiving athletic financial aid from the school.

    So the reality is that Comments 13 and 14 are incorrect. No restrictions are placed upon schools unless formal offers of athletic financial aid are made in these early verbals, unless we’ve been misinformed all this time that these agreements are non-binding on both sides. Even in the unlikely event that schools with big revenue programs like football and basketball would pass this, the effect on most lacrosse programs, including some of the big ones like Cornell and Princeton, is nil.

  16. Lax n stuff says:

    Sir Lax alot is spot on. If this goes through it will have a HUGE, HUGE impact on recruiting and college lax.

  17. middle man says:

    Nah, I think the only thing that changes is the language that is used by coaches. They’ll have to be careful in the way they present an offer to a candidate, but they can still let that player know that he has a home waiting for him and that money will be involved.

    If a coach says, “We’d really like you to come play for us” that’s fine according to the rule and the kid gets the picture. But if he says, “We’d really like you to come play for us and don’t worry about the money” he’s probably just violated the rule; and if he says, “We’d really like you to come play for us and don’t worry about the money, but I need an answer now” well, then he’s just too stupid to be a coach.

    If a parent says, “I don’t know if I can afford this” and the coach says, “I’ll set up a meeting with our financial aid office for you” he passes all talk about money to financial aid who know how to talk the talk and can veil their presentation by comparing the player to other players in the same or similar situation.

    Admissions can say, “Most students in your son’s situation receive around X dollars” they may have violated the rule, or maybe not, because they have not made an offer, have not nailed down a specific amount, have not demanded a commitment, nor has the coach.

    DIII’s and Ivy Leaguers don’t offer money, so they’re fine, and some DII’s do not offer money either, so they’re good too. The rule’s impact will most likely be felt most by the eight or so teams that have a chance to win every year and maybe turn a bit of a profit through merchandising (if that school exists).

    The bottom line is that coaches can still get early commits. The commitments are non-binding on either party so nothing really changes.

    This rule is for football, basketball and actually girls softball which has a pretty healthy TV deal via ESPN and CBS and money is involved.

  18. LI Guy says:

    Nice to see a batch of new Long Island commits to some prestigious D3 schools.

  19. Lax n stuff says:

    Now that the college season is almost over, it will be interesting to see if this proposal goes through over the summer.

  20. Smithf201 says:

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