The Division I Football Oversight Committee has once again proposed an early signing period for football. Two of them, actually.
Under the latest proposal, announced Wednesday, high school football recruits would have a 72-hour window to sign in late-June and another 72-hour window in mid-December that matches up with the current signing period for junior college prospects.
Cue the official explanation for the proposed change:
Currently, the only signing period for high school football prospects begins the first Wednesday in February. Coaches and administrators have discussed creating an early signing period for years, and the Football Oversight Committee studied the issue thoroughly. Ultimately, members believe they have developed a recruiting model that balances the interests of all involved.
“The working group did a deep dive on recruiting from beginning to end, and I think what we came up with as a proposal is both student-athlete-friendly and coach- and staff-friendly,” said Bob Bowlsby, chair of the Football Oversight Committee and commissioner of the Big 12 Conference. “We hit a sweet spot.”
This has come up in the past and Mike Riley has been pretty critical of an early signing day for football in the past. It wouldn’t help Nebraska at all. All of the Huskers’ challenges in football recruiting — most notably getting recruits from across the country to campus for an official visit when those visits can’t be paid for by the university until the start of a player’s senior year — get compounded. It’s hard enough for Nebraska to lure a kid from Florida away from SEC and ACC schools. Now imagine it’s trying to do that while all of those schools, likely benefiting from an unofficial visit thanks to proximity, are upping the pressure for that recruit to sign early.
It’s not just a Nebraska problem, either. Urban Meyer pilots a recruiting juggernaut in Columbus and he’s opposed. Strongly.
This proposal, which was also bundled with stricter satellite camp restrictions and a provision for a 10th assistant coach on college staffs, will be voted on in January.
WELL THEN . . .
THE GRAB BAG
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>>Jon Solomon of CBSSports.com notes that college coaching changes in football are happening earlier and earlier.
>>Bizarre scene in Boulder where a man with a machete was shot and killed inside the University of Colorado’s Champions Center.
TODAY’S SONG OF TODAY
Brandon is the Managing Editor for Hail Varsity and has covered Nebraska athletics for the magazine and web since 2012, Hail Varsity’s first season on the scene. His sports writing has also been featured by Fox Sports, The Guardian and CBS Sports.