- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
- John Boehner says GOP should support gay candidates: ‘I do’
- Grass-Whopper: Pan-fried cricket burgers go over big in New York City
NCAA’s Emmert outlines radical changes for college sports reform
Question of the Day
Academic requirements so stringent they would have left national champion Connecticut and six other schools ineligible for the last spring’s NCAA tournament were among a slew of reform proposals outlined by NCAA President Mark Emmert on Monday.
“We need to act with some dispatch,” Emmert said.
The most visible academic proposal requires a minimum academic progress rate (APR) of 900 to be eligble for postseason play. It would rise to 930 two years after adoption, equivalent to a 50 percent graduation rate. Connecticut, which won the NCAA tournament in March, had an APR of 893 and wouldn’t have been eligible under the plan.
If passed, the new APR requirement could start with the 2012-13 school year.
Emmert also supports allowing conferences - at their discretion - to boost athletic scholarships by $2,000 annually to come closer to matching the true cost of attendance. As part of that, schools could offer multiyear scholarships instead of the current year-to-year model.
Emmert bristled at suggestions that any of this resembled paying athletes.
The NCAA’s Division I board of directors will vote on both measures during its Friday meeting in Indianapolis.
Data from the Knight Commission showed the median spending by Football Bowl Subdivision schools in 2009 was $91,053 per athlete - the group was unsure if that figure included athletic scholarship cost - versus $13,471 for nonathlete students.
But Emmert’s to-do list is longer than a rush-hour wait on the Beltway.
After a scandal-filled summer, he wants to revamp the NCAA’s enforcement structure by having four levels of violations - instead of the current primary and secondary - and have “sentencing guidelines.” Emmert called the scandals “annoying in the extreme” and “eroding to everything we cared about.”
He slammed the organization’s excruciatingly detailed rule book as “laughable,” hoping instead for a process that is focused on a desired outcome rather than, say, the three pages in the rule book on what size of envelope can be used to send mail to a recruit.
“This system,” said University of North Carolina President Thomas Ross, a former judge, “is not a good one.”
Emmert also wants to overhaul requirements for initial eligibility and transfers. That includes raising the grade-point average for incoming athletes from 2.0 to 2.3, restricting the number of noncore credits from transfers and adding the option of an academic redshirt for freshmen who don’t fully qualify.
Emmert believes the changes, if passed, would be in place by this time next year.
He was much less definitive on the conference realignment that is altering the landscape of college athletics. As president of the University of Washington, Emmert helped kick off the countrywide game of musical conferences by voting to admit Colorado and Utah and transform the Pac-10 into the Pac-12.
The vitriol, the surprise moves and the seemingly hasty decisions bother him. Emmert compared this period to Europe in June of 1914 before World War I erupted, with each country suspiciously eyeing the other. But Emmert’s authority doesn’t extend to realignment; that belongs to the school presidents and conference commissioners.
Emmert suggested a 30-day waiting period when a school wants to shift affiliations. And he said - wishfully so, perhaps - that “rationality and calmness” could return to the decision-making process.
But the lure of a conference’s automatic Bowl Championship Series berth, better television contracts, more exposure and more money are powerful intoxicants. The presidents and chancellors expressed distaste and disappointment in the process, but each of their schools or conferences are involved.
“That’s become a status symbol,” Emmert said of the BCS. “We’ve created athletics as a proxy for academic status.”
After Emmert left, Boise State University President Bob Kustra said he thought he knew what the audience was thinking while sitting in a room with silver pots of coffee and little glass bottles of soda where change was discussed for 3 1/2 hours.
“There they go talking again. They do such a great job of it,” Kustra said. “Where’s the action?”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- FENNO: No obvious answer for Redskins in determining Mike Shanahan's fate
- FENNO: After another loss, Redskins a franchise in free-fall
- Learning to play football right: Some hope to bring safety back to game
- FENNO: NCAA finds way into Rep. Linda Sanchez's crosshairs over concussions
- FENNO: RG3's words not the Redskins' biggest problem
Latest Blog Entries
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Bradley Manning, as Chelsea Manning, pens thank-you to MLK from prison
- Activists urge Obama to go rogue, sidestep Congress
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- NAPOLITANO: Pope Francis should be saving souls, not pocketbooks
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- Pope Franciss colorful past: Gods nightclub bouncer
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- MOVIE REVIEW: 'Out of the Furnace'
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
Why can’t humans just be free to be humans?
Get in the middle of all the action inside and outside the boxing ring.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!