Back in the day when the NCAA introduced new rules that kept head coaches from recruiting during the spring evaluation period, more than a few people took to dubbing the legislation the ‘Saban Rule’ after Alabama’s Nick Saban. Like adds to his trophy case however, the Crimson Tide coach is also adding to the collection of bylaws inspired by his actions as the NCAA Division I Council announced a particularly interesting proposal on Wednesday that seems in large part aimed at reducing the number of generic “analysts” that have become popular to hire in Tuscaloosa and beyond.
At the heart of the matter is the number of staffers working in specific areas and particularly recruiting. Though there are strict limits in some departments such as 10 (soon to be 11) full-time coaches, strength staff scope, etc., there hasn’t been much of a limit on the number of analysts, recruiting coordinators and other similar positions. The proposal that is sitting in front of the NCAA right now would limit a FBS school to “30 individuals who will participate in on-campus football recruiting activities” and go into effect on August 1st, 2018. Any of the 30 individuals would be able to have correspondence with recruits/parents/guardians and that overall number is set to include the full-time coaches and graduate assistants at a school (which will total up to 15 next year).
Schools would declare who is among the group of 30 prior to their preseason camp and would submit a signed form to the NCAA office upon doing so.
“We feel we have reinforced the rules that are already on the books,” Bob Bowlsby, chair of the Football Oversight Committee and commissioner of the Big 12 Conference, said in a statement. “The head coach, the soon to be 10 assistants and the four graduate assistants are the people who are supposed to be coaching student-athletes, preparing them for the game and doing the recruiting.”
The Football Oversight Committee will receive feedback from administrators and coaches over the coming months and review it in January before the legislation moves forward.
Also notable is a proposal to move the start of preseason camps to 25 days prior to a team’s first game of the season. That would result in a more compressed fall camp schedule however, as the elimination of two-a-days by the NCAA recently led to most FBS schools receiving a waiver to begin preseason practice one week earlier than normal.
While both proposals have been in the works for some time, it’s pretty clear that Saban and other head coaches across the country will be looking at doing a little more planning than usual to start the 2018 campaign should the legislation get the thumbs up next year.