The Day After The Day

Before we get started, we highly recommend that you consider using Twitter to follow this topic, it is the best place to go to get links to articles on oversigning as they come out.  It is really amazing how information flows through Twitter.  We'll try to retweet as many articles as possible so they will show up in the sidebar here so those of you not on twitter can read them.  On to the good stuff...

Now that the dust is settling on the SEC's new "roster management" legislation, the general consensus appears to be that the media is not buy what the SEC is selling.  As we mentioned yesterday, this was strictly a PR move by the conference to try and appease the media while at the same time not get on board with REAL legislation that completely eradicates the exploitation and abuse that takes place in oversigning.  Was it better than nothing, sure, but let's be honest, could they really do nothing?

Our biggest criticism is that if the SEC wants to move to national legislation on oversigning, why didn't they invite their colleagues to the table for discussion before creating what they want as the national legislation?  Why is the SEC pushing so hard for THEIR rules to be national rules?  The answer is simple, this was never about being ethical or doing the right thing, this is about competitive advantages, something coaches made very clear in their 12-0 vote to not change the rules and something SEC fans have been accusing Big 10 fans of whining about ever since this topic came up.  For SEC fans, the only reason this is even an issue is because Big 10 fans think they are at a competitive disadvantage.  Irconically, when forced to do something about oversigning, it was the SEC that showed its hand and revealed that oversigning is about a competitive advantage and if they have to give it up then the rest of the country MUST follow suit.  For months and months we heard that there is no competitive advantage in oversigning, that myth has been busted.

Could you imagine if the roles were reversed and it was the Big 10 doing what the SEC is doing? 

What if the Big 10 announced that they were going to go back to their pre-2002 rules were there was absolutely ZERO oversigning and they EXPECTED the NCAA to make it a national rule?  The outrage would destroy the sport.  Just to make sure we have this right, the conference that was the worst abuser of the unethical practice of oversigning declares that it is doing something about it and, by God, the rest of the country is going to follow along.  The funny part is that the new rules they are touting are not as restrictive as the B1G rules when you consider that if a school has 16 openings the new SEC rule still allows for 25 signees; that's oversigning by 9.  The B1G rule would only allow that school to sign 19, which is only 3 over.  If you are a self-respecting college football fan you should be insulted, especially if you are an SEC fan that really cares about the conference and the sport.

But here's the good news, and it really is good for sport of college football and all of college athletics.  The door is now open.  There is a very real chance that we will get everyone to sit down at the table and draft real meaningful rules on oversigning that addresses the problem at its root, the number 85, and yet still provides competitive equality with regards to the number of players each school is signing each year.

The NCAA has an obligation to create national rules on oversigning that make it clear that hoarding players and playing games with the numbers to gain a competitive advantage through highly unethical behavior has no place in the sport they regulate, that every recruit and current player IN EVERY CONFERENCE will be protected from forced attrition, and that every conference competing for BCS bowl spots and the money that comes with it will be on equal footing when it comes to the number of players they can recruit and sign. 

Quick Links:

Sports Blog, Get the Picture, which has been following this topic for a long time, has a nice post up on the days events and points out that Chris Low sees the shortcomings of the new legislation.  Highly recommended reading.


For a much stronger take, from a Northwestern perspective, check out Lake the Post's latest piece on the new SEC legislation.

Math. Basic math.  Per NCAA rules a team is limited to having 85 scholarship players on its roster. The biggest bullshit is the PR spin term they’re using – “roster management”.  If you follow the backchannel talk on this type of stuff you’ll know this is a direct response to the heat the conference is getting for oversigning.  Yet, somehow they’re using the scholarship cap per season as some sort of veiled attempt to be ethical. 

Finally, we stand up loud and proud for our friends at Oversigning.com who make my obsession with Northwestern football look like a mainstream action. The entire site is dedicated, passionately, to this issue.  Yesterday was the equivalent of NU going to the Rose Bowl in terms of frequency of posts and “OMG” moments.  I can’t do the blog justice as there are so many damn good points on the SEC reaction including the absolutely insane totalitarian Nick Saban stance...


The ShreveportTimes.com has a piece up on the SEC coaches losing to the SEC presidents.  Interesting comments from Les Miles and LSU AD, Joe Alleva.  Our advice to them is that oversigning college football recruits is not how you solve the problem of poor elementary and secondary education systems, in fact, by oversigning you are enabling those systems, to the degree that they play a role in preparing a kid for a scholarship in college football, to continue to fail kids instead of forcing them to improve. 

"I think there are academic risks in the SEC recruiting pool," Miles said. "And I think at times you take some of those risks with the idea that you'll have a plan B for him. Then you'll be able to direct him comfortably and delay enrollment. I think that those things are certainly healthy.

LSU athletic director Joe Alleva, a former Duke athletic director, has noticed the difference in recruiting in the Deep South as opposed to recruiting the state of North Carolina at Duke, where academic risks are usually not taken.

“You’ve got to understand, the elementary education and secondary education in the state of Louisiana is not the best in the world,” said Alleva, who wanted the limit to remain 28. “So we have kids coming out, and we don’t know if they are going to qualify or not. We don’t know if they’re going to get through the NCAA Clearinghouse and be eligible.


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  1. “The answer is simple, this was never about being ethical or doing the right thing, this is about competitive advantages”

    finally, you admit that you care nothing about ethics…

    • Taken out of context, I was speaking from the perspective of the SEC administrators. This has always been about two things, first and foremost the ethical treatment of players and the removal of exploitation through the abuse of the oversigning loophole, and second, creating a level playing field with regarding to the number of players signed.

      • From the guy who takes virtually everything out of context. Ha. You’ve been exposed for the fraud you are about over signing. Your stance is really disguised racism and nothing more than that.

        • Oh my gosh, you’re right! How could we have not seen it all along? Clearly oversigning is the white man and the system trying to prevent minorities from joining college football! Who knew!!! And while we were thinking the south had trouble in the past with racism and Jim Crow laws, when in actuality it was the north all along pulling their strings like puppetmasters, what with their oversigning and all!!!!! It makes sense to, because the B1G’s laws were made in what, 1959? Right in the heart of the seperate but equal debates. Brilliant! Who would have ever seen this coming? Bravo, good sir, bravo, for exposing those racist jerks from up north who put in oversigning to keep minorities out of their football programs.

          • The reality is that minorities will be affected the most. Josh just revealed his real motives and issues regarding over signing, to take away opportunities from a potential SA. The white Presidents of the SEC and the white Mike Slive just limited more minorities from the SEC. That is the reality of it. Big winners will the junior colleges.

            • Yes, kids will no longer have the “opportunity” to go to college for one year before Coach tells them to get lost so he can make room for the next batch of hotshot recruits.

              You see, the goal isn’t to go to college, it’s to FINISH college. Oversigning promotes a culture that revokes kids’ scholarships before they can finish their education. Some opportunity.

              • 1. Can you show where this is actually happening?

                2. How would eliminating oversigning keep schools from revoking anybody’s scholarship?

    • If you include more of the quote you can see he was talking about why the SEC passed this legislation –

      “Why is the SEC pushing so hard for THEIR rules to be national rules? The answer is simple, this was never about being ethical or doing the right thing, this is about competitive advantages, something coaches made very clear in their 12-0 vote to not change the rules and something SEC fans have been accusing Big 10 fans of whining about ever since this topic came up.”

      I don’t think anyone disagrees that oversigning gives teams a competitive advantage – no one would do it if this weren’t the case. The reason other conferences have stricter rules is because they feel it is wrong. There is no doubt in my mind that a part of all fans of these conferences want equality in recruiting to help keep equality on the field but that doesn’t mean their entire argument is solely based on that fact alone.

  2. I’m still trying to discern the hidden message in the dueling 12-0 votes. No way that’s a coincidence. It has to be some type of political game.

    • It’s simple, it was done to make the message appear much stronger than it really was…you guys vote all for it, and we’ll all vote against it so it really looks like we are taking away something you really want.

      • That is so right Josh. It was a big conspiracy. Just like 9-11 and the moon landing. Why don’t you go back to praising the virtue of Tressel.

      • That’s definitely the simplest answer, but I’m not sure that’s exactly it.

        These coaches are as image conscious as anyone, and it doesn’t do them any favors to be painted as “the bad guys” in this (any more than they already are). As much as a congressman doesn’t want to have to answer to his constituency why he voted down government spending reform, an SEC coach doesn’t want to have to answer to a recruit’s family why he voted down oversigning reform. Hard to imagine all 12 of them agreeing to take the fall on this PR nightmare.

        And it’s not like they would be in fear of Slive and the presidents coming back over the top with even harsher legislation 2 days later if they broke ranks. As this site has well documented and the coaches know as well as anyone, it’s not in Slive & Co.’s interests or desires to get tougher than this right now.

        If it had been voted down 10-2 or 9-3 or whatever, it would have been more believable. But 12-0? With another 12-0 on top? Strange things are afoot at the Circle K.

  3. Yep, still obsessed with the SEC. And stop attempting to portray it as if the SEC is trying to force all conferences to adopt their rules. They’re going to propose it to the other conferences, and if the other conferences don’t won’t to adopt the rules then they won’t. The Big Ten tried to do the same thing a few months ago with respect to signing limits on baseball. Was the Big Ten motivated solely by their desire to level the playing field too? No, because you give every possible benefit of the doubt to the Big Ten while always assuming the absolute worst about the SEC. Just like Marvin Ray, just like Ohio State’s “scholarship roster”, just like Dillon Baxter. Still waiting on that “quick follow-up” on Penn State by the way.

  4. So everything bad about college sports can be traced to the SEC. All that blather about turning his attention to other problems, even in his own conference, was exactly that — a total fabrication, a convenience of the moment.

    Essentially, the B1G can do no wrong, and J won’t rest until everyone’s following B1G rules — because he just can’t see the problems within his own beloved conference. You see the same thing in politics, guys and girls who can look the camera straight in the face and blame everything on “the other guy.”

    J as Ann Coulter – what a disappointing end.

    • That is not it at all. There are things that are broken everywhere, even in the B1G, it’s just that oversigning is not one of them.

      This is just the beginning ITM, I am really hopefully that all parties will sit at the table and draft nation-wide rules that really address the problem.

      • I hope the discussion goes better than how you have treated the proposals put forth on this site. Some very good proposals have been brought up here, only to fall on deaf ears while you continue to support only “adopt the B10 rules”. Does this mean you will now open up to something new?

  5. Josh: I see you talking a lot on twitter about the SEC not addressing oversigning in baseball.

    FYI, I believe baseball is not on the table during the spring meetings due to the sport still being in-season. I think they do separate meetings later in the year. Could be wrong, but I believe that’s how it works. Not that I think they would have addressed oversigning in baseball if it had been open for legislation, but I think in this instance you be crowing about something that wasn’t even a possibility.

  6. wait….

    i thought this wasn’t an advantage.

    why is an anyone mad that the are becoming more restrictive?????



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