If there’s anyone in college sports who really ought to keep his mouth shut more than Bob Bowlsby, I’d like to know whom.
Thursday nights, on the other hand…
The next time somebody mentions the sacred role of academics in collegiate football, make sure you bring up Rutgers, where a head football coach can do this…
Flood met with the professor off-campus, and contacted the professor through subsequent emails, after he was told by a member of the academic support staff “that he is not to have contact with any faculty member regarding a student’s academic standing.”
When the faculty member agreed to “review an additional paper” to possibly help Barnwell’s standing in the class, Flood helped Barnwell by providing “grammatical and minor editorial suggestions to the submitted paper.”
… and walk away with a three-game suspension.
Then again, after seeing this,
“Coach Flood exemplifies our university’s standards and values both on and off the field,” Rutgers President Robert Barchi said last September after executing the extension. “He has put together a strong coaching staff that supports our mission to compete well both in the classroom and on the field.”
… maybe we should wonder why the school is being so tough on him. Maybe it’s simply that with everything else that’s gone on at Rutgers lately, he’s just gotten lost in the weeds.
The thing people – and by that, I mean certain coaches – tend to forget in blasting kids for “taking advantage” of the graduate transfer rule, is that it takes two to tango. Players who graduate and look to move on still need a dancing partner.
Or to put it another way, “Pass a well-meaning rule, and schools will find a way to bend it.”
Dude, the word you’re looking for is “Auburn“.
If you’re intrigued by the concept of what a D-1 football program that paid more than lip service to academics would look like, here you go.
In just a few short weeks college football returns, so I know you’ve got an appetite.
Instead of Jim Delany’s blanket ineligibility proposal for incoming freshmen student-athletes, the Mississippi State coach offers something more nuanced to help kids adjust: Any player above the NCAA’s new core grade-point-average requirement should get five years of eligibility instead of the standard four.
As he explains it, here’s what you’d get with that.
“You might take a freshman and they are being punished for having better grades. They might be forced to play even though they needed a redshirt year,” Mullen says. “One of the thoughts I had was there’s a mandatory academic redshirt year for a certain group of people…well, if you are above that new standard you should get five years of eligibility. Why punish someone who might be forced to have to play?
“Instead of punishing guys for doing bad, why not reward guys for doing good?”
Well, that’s nice, but he’s a coach, so you can figure there’s another agenda lurking in the background. And there is.
His idea is to counteract the NCAA’s requirement, set to go into effect August 2016, which requires prospective student-athletes to have a minimum GPA of 2.3. If the recruits can’t hit that 2.3 GPA figure but are above the old 2.0 scale, they’d be forced to take an academic redshirt year. The NCAA also raised its sliding scale based on GPA and SAT/ACT scores, and now requires recruits to have completed 10 of their 16 core classes before their senior year.
Mullen imagines a hypothetical scenario in which multiple players have to take an academic redshirt year, and how that’d force other guys into playing time before they might be ready. That’s the impetus behind his push to give those players an extra year of eligibility.
If Mullen’s idea were passed, it could dramatically change the way programs recruit. Schools would still recruit talented players with shaky transcripts, but the benefits of signing a stronger student would be big when another year of eligibility is on the table. It would even the scales a bit for programs with tough admissions standards.
So what he’s really after is more signing flexibility. That, in and of itself, isn’t necessarily a bad thing. (In fact, if it leads to less pressure on coaches to futz with players’ grades, it’s likely a good thing.) But the bottom line here is that this is about giving guys like him a lifeline to be able to manage continuing to bring in athletic talent that isn’t so talented in the classroom. And to the extent that eases the pressure on high schools and high schoolers to bring their academic efforts up to a more serious level, that isn’t such a good thing.
What do y’all think?