Radical Changes Could Be Coming To NCAA

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The National Collegiate Athletic Association announced that it would be parting ways with its president Mark Emmert by June 30, 2023 or when a replacement is hired on Tuesday evening.

The major shakeup could be just one of many coming to the collegiate athletics landscape in the coming years.

According to a report from Sports Illustrated’s Ross Dellenger, sweeping and major changes could be coming via the NCAA Transformation Committee.

The committee — which SEC commissioner Greg Sankey and Ohio athletic director Julie Cromer chair — is moving towards a handful of proposals that would significantly shake up the NCAA landscape.

According to the article, the major proposals include eliminating scholarship caps on sports with partial scholarships, eliminating the number of coaches per team, expanding direct payments to student athletes, reconfiguring the recruiting calendar and implementing closed periods for the transfer portal.

The first two proposals would be groundbreaking for baseball. The NCAA currently caps the number of scholarships at 11.7 for 35 players and the number of paid assistants at two.

If approved, Title IX would come into affect. Any scholarship added to baseball or any other male sport would have to be matched in women’s sports.

If the Transformation Committee officially proposes these changes and they are approved, it would not be a national free for all. Conferences would vote on how many scholarships would be available for partial scholarship sports as well as how many assistant coaches can be full time.

With Sankey leading the committee and the SEC long investing the most of any conference in baseball, I wouldn’t expect the SEC to be timid about enacting serious change.

The final three proposals address concerns that have emerged in the new era of college sports with the transfer portal and NIL. SI’s report didn’t go into details about the direct payments to players, but that continues the trend created by the implementation of NIL.

College coaches have complained and criticized the lack of jurisdiction over the transfer portal and the never ending cycle of players entering it. This proposal would mitigate some of those concerns by implementing a calendar in which players can and can not enter the transfer portal.

These changes would help address the radical changes within the collegiate athletics landscape over the past few years.

However, the biggest issue and complaint about the possible changes is the increasing gap between the haves and have-nots in college sports.

“The gap is going to continue to widen,” group of five associate athletic director told Dellenger. “What does this look like a year from now? We had a facilities arms race, recruiting arms race and now NIL is its own arms race. It’s nuts.”

That gap is widening whether these rules are implemented or not, and we could be heading for a separation between power five conferences and all other division one conferences into different governing bodies.

The radical changes we’ve seen in recent years could increase in the coming years.

Ryan Schumpert is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. He just completed a three-year stint with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent last three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Did we leave out the part about Ryan interning for the Smokies? Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three of the reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.