Somehow lost in the contant refreshing of NCAA.org this week was a press release from the NCAA that basketball recruiting was going to get a “makeover” as early as 2012, thanks to some crackdown from the sport’s governing body. In the release (linked above), USF President Judy Genshaft, who serves as the chair of the NCAA Board of Directors, said that they will target the third parties who can influence prospects as they try to determine a school. Nothing like starting the tenure off with a nearly impossible mission. But, it seemed noble enough, I guess.
The reasoning behind the crackdown on recruiting is because that these elite athletes – nearly all of whom will become wealthy beyond a bachelors degree at an exponential clip – should be focused on their college degrees, not their pro careers. Yes, they actually said that. In almost those exact words too. Missouri AD and Leadership Council Mike Alden, take it away:
“We’re not here for the grooming of athletes. We’re here for the grooming of students.”
As Mike DeCourcy pointed out, it’s not only an insane notion to think that these young men are coming to campus to do anything but what every other student does (prepare for their career), the aloofness is a sign of why things go wrong in the NCAA. In fact, this new regime and “makeover”, according to the Bylaw Blog guy, negates all the potential progress made last year in which coaches and administrators tried to find a happy medium. Sigh.
But, we look forward to them clearing our guy. You know, the one who already made it clear he’s focused on being a student-athlete and turned down the pro contracts. We’ll hang up and listen.