Another shot across the bow of roster management

The Big Ten isn’t waiting on the NCAA to mandate multi-year scholarships.  It’s moving ahead on its own.

… Buckeyes, as well as players at most — if not all — Big Ten schools and some other programs around the country, are signing four-year scholarships instead of renewable one-year scholarships, as has been the standard. After an NCAA rule change, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany encouraged conference schools to offer four-year grants.

The SEC has declined to follow the Big Ten’s lead, although individual schools are free to do so.

In the Southeastern Conference, money isn’t an issue, but some conference coaches, like South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier, have come out publicly against multi-year offers, saying players need to continue to earn their way. SEC commissioner Mike Slive, however, has publicly supported multi-year scholarships, and Greg Sankey, the SEC associate commissioner for compliance, said Tuesday that Slive maintains that stance.

However, for now, SEC schools made their own calls without conference input.

“We took the less regulatory approach to see how this is implemented across the country,” Sankey said.

Translation:  we’ll wait and see if this starts costing our member programs recruits.

If it does, expect Steve Spurrier to find religion on the matter.

(h/t:  CFT)

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18 Comments

Filed under Big Ten Football, Recruiting, SEC Football

18 responses to “Another shot across the bow of roster management

  1. King Jericho

    I hate Saban-style roster management, but this probably goes in the other direction of fairness. I hate to say it, but I could easily see guys not working as hard after they get a scholarship because of that safety net, even at UGA where we don’t pull scholarships from anyone (that I have ever heard of)! If there’s more fine print to a multi-year scholarship, then you open the loopholes back up for Saban to wiggle through, but I don’t know how you balance teenagers insubordination and defiant ways vs a grown man being paid to not care about the pawns he uses to win.

    • You don’t think playing time is a motivator?

      • Scott W.

        Playing time hasn’t been a motivator until this year and even then the effectiveness seemed spotty.

      • King Jericho

        For most people, I’m sure it is. However, there’s always a few bad apples that might not see it that way. Though I guess if Richt is generally nice enough to keep people around on scholarship that probably won’t see the field anyways, I’m okay with a more roster management-focused coach having to have that same “problem.”

    • UGLYDAWG

      I wonder if the four year contract is “standard”.
      Are the contracts the same for every ki?
      Does a school have the leeway to sculpt a contract to a kids situation?
      There must be some factors written in that would protect the institution as well as the player.
      And if these factors are written in, what happens when you let one kid get away with breaking a rule (see “recent QB woes at SC) , but pull another’s scholarship for the same infraction?
      Just another can of worms? This is why having scruples and morals and standing by them is worth more than a piece of paper. Rules and laws have always been forced on the self-abiding by the sleazeballs of the world. When it’s said and done, there are always loopholes and assholes who are going to exploit them.
      This is another reason I’m thankful for CMR.

  2. Biggus Rickus

    I prefer one-year scholarships for the reason Spurrier cites, however, not under the current system where the player is basically beholden to the University for four years. If players could leave without being penalized, the one-year scholarship would be the optimal deal for all parties.

    • Bad Marinara

      Yes, Biggus. I was going to say just this. Don’t screw the kid because Saban–I mean whoever the coach is–is a jerk.

      But also I don’t mind allowing multi-year schollies. Let’s see who really wants you. Might give the little schools an advantage for some kids to help even out the playing field. Guaranteed four years at Wake or one year at Ohio St? Makes you think. Of course it won’t happen. Schools can’t control themselves and soon all will be four year schollies.

  3. Hogbody Spradlin

    Let’s look at this from the other side of the coin. Just how ironclad are those “4 year commitments” the Big 10 is trumpeting? Their commitments could be revocable for any number of reasons, just in the document. And, if the document doesn’t provide an escape hatch, the coaches can always give a guy the treatment if they don’t like him. Remember, Corch is up there now.

    Don’t cue the Hosannas yet.

  4. W Cobb Dawg

    If the kid can’t transfer without a penalty year, then the scholly should be for an extended period. Because I’m sick & tired of the way ethically-challenged coaches like saban abuse the system, I’m for substantially tightening the scholarship limits. I believe providing a multi-year scholly is a step in that direction, though I’m sure the sabans of the world will find ways to abuse the system no matter what lengths are taken to enforce ethics.

  5. Cojones

    Would think the “You’re not going to play” line from the coach would trump insubordination. That applies to weight room workouts and discipline runs. Also don’t think the screws should be turned unless it becomes a scholly irritant. Give chances when mistakes are made by the player since wisdom isn’t one of the virtues of teenagery. Keep’em all happy and productive. After all, that’s the guys we recruited and were happy they signed.

    Since we do it anyway, give the 4-yr scholarship and hope for the best as we do now. It shows you have faith in character vetting skills
    displayed by the staff. I would think that a 1-yr proofing could be offered with a 3-yr to follow if the guy is borderline immature for college. If someone else gets him with a 4-yr offer, it’s their problem. If the 3-yr carrot doesn’t work then you don’t get the rotten apple in the barrel.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      You make a good point here. Also, what happens when a kid turns out to be a bad apple? Can the coach still kick him off the team if he has a 4 year ride? Does he get to keep the ride if he gets kicked off? I see the potential for litigation here.

  6. MT

    Senator, not sure if you have any awareness of this, but there are definite income tax questions on going to a 4-year scholarship model.

    See IRS code 117(c)(1); [Income Tax exclusion for Qualified scholarships] shall not apply to that portion of any amount received which represents … other services by the student required as a condition for receiving the qualified scholarship or qualified tuition reduction.

    The schools have to plausibly be able to say “we’d still keep them on scholarship even if they dropped off of the football team.” The minute the Corches of the world pull a 4 year scholarship because the football player wants to focus on basket weaving, the scholarships at whichever school are shown to be conditioned, and likely subject to income tax.

  7. Always Someone Else's Fault

    1 yr., 4 yr. 10 yr. – I’m not sure it makes a difference. Depends on the contract language. I’m sure the universities retain the right to pull it essentially for any reason at any time.

    FYI – According to Mandel, Muschamp says Florida is doing 4 year deals. Purdue isn’t. Seems more like a university decision than a conference one. Any idea where Georgia is on this one?

  8. peacedog

    There is a rumor Auburn was handing out 4-year scholarships this year.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      Does Auburn’s 4 year schollie come in a plain envelope with nothing written on the outside and stuffed with cash?

  9. Cojones

    There’s a larger mess going on with Josh’s LOI. His Guardian won’t sign it and wants him to go to FU. We haven’t received his faxed LOI with signatures yet.

    Where are you Law Dawgs when we need you?