Posted: 8:05 pm Monday, April 14th, 2014

SEC’s appeal of NCAA recruiting rule to be heard on Tuesday 

By Michael Carvell

LSU’s Les Miles hopes the SEC is successful with Tuesday’s appeal of the NCAA’s most significant rule for college football recruiting within the last year.

“That’s a bad rule,” Miles recently told the AJC. “Any time you’re going to operate in the dark and the scenario is set up to do so, it’s just a mistake.

LSU's Les Miles (AP)

LSU’s Les Miles (AP)

The rule has to do with high school seniors (who are approved academically to enroll early in college) being able to sign a financial aid agreement – which, in turn, rewards that college with several recruiting benefits, including “unlimited contact” with the prospect until he signs a national letter of intent (NLI).

After a few prospects signed financial aid agreements with multiple colleges this past year, the NCAA issued a new interpretation – the prospect could still sign with multiple colleges, but only the first college would have the extra recruiting benefits.

The logic makes sense on the surface, but the big problem is that unlike the NLI program (which is governed by the NCAA), the records on financial aid agreements are shared only between the recruit and that respective college.

According a top NCAA official, the lack of required communication between colleges on financial aid agreements “created a little bit of a concern among some in the membership that aren’t comfortable with — that it might result in inadvertent violations.” Here’s a more lengthy explanation.

For example, a kid could sign financial aid agreements with Georgia State, UGA and Georgia Tech. The three colleges don’t have to share that information with each other, so all three might think they all have “unlimited contact” with the kid and recruit as if they do. If it was later proven that the kid signed first with Georgia State, then UGA and Georgia Tech would be guilty of NCAA recruiting violations for the “unlimited contact.”

The NCAA’s Div. I Legislative Council will review the SEC’s appeal, among other things, at Tuesday’s meeting.

Said Les Miles, “To think somebody would sign a piece of paper that would give you the opportunity (for unlimited contact), and then unbeknown to you, you were in violation at the end because you did all these things, it doesn’t make sense.”

“I’m certain that the NCAA will re-visit that. They’re a very insightful group, the best that they can be. And I can’t imagine that it will allow this to continue.”

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– By Michael Carvell, AJC’s Recruiting Blog

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9 comments
Hunk
Hunk

When is the NCAA going to put an end to stupid recruiting violations by allowing the school to just sign them at anytime .......period. Once your signed your done. That's it.

territory
territory

I seem to remember that Miles kicked his starting QB, Perrilloux off the team in the off season leaving him w/ no QB's w/ experience & had to play one that they got from Harvard & the other was a true frosh. Basically paralyzed their 2008 & 2009 season w/ 8 & 9 win seasons. He also kicked off his best player, Tyrann Mathieu the year before last. No coach is at the top of the ethics pole, but Miles certainly isn't at the bottom of it.

RedandBlackDAWG
RedandBlackDAWG

Eliminate the financial aid clause altogether or if it is kept, Les is right, there will be multiple unintended violations of the new rule. It is either that or require the first school to sign, make it known on the day of the signing. Why this rule is even in effect in the first place, is a little puzzling. You can have early signings so that the kid can attend college in the spring if he graduates early, without it. It is not like they are going to get a better, more lucrative scholarship by signing a financial aid LOI anyway.

DrPhill
DrPhill

This issue is difficult to understand.  I think it may apply to students who graduate from high school early, say in January, and they want to enroll in the spring or summer semester.  I guess the athletic scholarship doesn't kick in until the fall. So they apply for Federal Financial Aid and student loans for early admission.  If a student signs for financial aid with three different schools, he is likely guided through that process by three different coaches.  None of this really matters until the student actually shows up on campus, and that should be the controlling factor.  Miles is on the low end of the ethics scale, so if he advocates something, it carries a personal benefit. Perhaps Miles put this issue up to a team vote like he did with the eligibility issue with the criminal, Jeremy Hill.

JaySly
JaySly

let schools sign players whenever they want---the corrupt ncaa need to stay out of it

Saldiven
Saldiven

Should just go ahead and have an early signing period and have done with it.

Jim70
Jim70

Glad the sec is taking this on.  it is a national concern, not just the sec.


NCAA has a place, but evidently they don't know exactly where it is.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

They dont call him the Mad hatter for nothing. I think he is right on the $$$.