The NCAA’s Division I Council voted to end early recruiting. The new rules do not take effect until its is approved by the Division I Board of Directors at their meeting on April 24. This means college coaches have until the approval to make verbal commitments.
The council approved recommendations from the Student Athlete Experience Committee to:
- Prohibit recruiting conversations between a college coach and Prospective Student Athlete (PSA) and their family before September 1 of the PSA’s junior year of high school
- Prohibit colleges from providing game tickets to prospects before Sept 1 of their sophomore year
- Move official visits to Sept. 1 of the PSA’s junior year instead of their Senior year
The NCAA states that this will follow a recruiting model that resembles the schedule other students follow when choosing where to go to college. The move intends to bring an end to college coaches in softball and other D1 college sports recruiting athletes at a young age, some as early as sixth grade.
“These changes will improve the recruiting experience for prospective student-athletes and coaches and lead to better decision-making,” said Blake James, Council chair and Miami (Florida) director of athletics. “Ultimately, a better recruiting process will improve the college experience for Division I student-athletes.”
Phone calls are also off limits. “The new rules prevent phone calls between coaches and recruits until Sept. 1 of the prospective student-athlete’s junior year and allow off-campus recruiting contact to begin the same date,” states Michell Hosick, Associate Director of Public and Media Relations at the NCAA.
Recruiting conversations through a third party are considered contact. “According to the Division I Recruiting Guide, the passing of notes or orally relaying information to a PSA by a third party on behalf of an school’s staff member counts as a contact” stated Hosick.