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Appalachian State is the latest athletic department to join Collegiate Sports Connect. The Mountaineers become the fourth Sun Belt member to use Connect for a marketplace advantage. Want a demo of Connect? Click here.
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D1.dossiers... The D1.dossier for the AD opening at Eastern Washington is available for those interested in preparing for the gig in Cheney. $249 for an entire year of subscription and access to all dossiers. Long Beach State is up next & will be ready no later than Friday. (link)
An internal memo from the ACC indicates that “we must be prepared to negotiate and possibly compromise” on allowing a form of pay-for-play,” according to On3’s Wittry, who also notes the December 13 missive outlines five “must-haves” for the Power 5 in any potential federal solution. Those must-haves include preventing student-athletes from being classified as employees; granting athletes their NIL rights in media telecasts of competition; and NIL or third-party payments being used as “recruiting or participating inducements.” Additionally, Wittry reports, the P5 conferences want federal legislation to preempt state laws, as well as to provide “legal liability protection for following these provisions of the new law, at least prospectively.” Further, the memo identifies additional student-athlete support, healthcare benefits for student-athletes and enforcement of laws in new legislation as “what we consider, and what the Senate will consider, the price to obtain our ‘Must Haves’ above. In other words, we must be prepared to negotiate and possibly compromise on items … in order to arrive at a bill that can pass the Senate and be signed by the President.” More. (link)
California Baptist has received a $28.5M gift – the largest in the university's history – from Dale and Sarah Ann Fowler. In recognition of the gift, the Lancers will name the events center in their honor. President Ellis: “The Dale E. and Sarah Ann Fowler Events Center will be a reminder of how their generosity will impact CBU for generations to come.” The donation was not earmarked for a particular use. (link)
NCAA National Coordinator of FB Officials Shaw tells ESPN’s Dinich the rules changes being considered this week could shorten the average length of football games by seven to eight minutes and eight plays. “A year or so ago, we began to pivot away from just worrying about the clock to the number of plays per game, student-athlete exposures, and that has really become more the direction now, led by our commissioners. With the focus on player health and safety and the College Football Playoff and extended playoff, which could create more games for players, it's appropriate to look at what are these numbers of student-athlete exposures?" Tulane AD Dannen, who chairs the Competition Committee, says there’s been “very little opposition” to the rule changes but adds that more research is needed. “While the idea of reducing plays makes a lot of sense, I don't know that anyone knows what the nominal number of plays is. I consider the three proposals that are alive here as maybe a starting point, not necessarily the end.” (link)
Baylor AD Rhoades talks about the “mess and chaos” of NIL: “The only thing that will fundamentally and legally work is for there to be better legislation that will preempt [these] laws and put everyone on equal ground. Then you have to back it with some kind of clearing out that all this runs through along with separate enforcement so that people can be held accountable for doing NIL the wrong way. It's a real disadvantage, the schools like Baylor, that are doing it right. That is okay. We will continue to fight, scratch and claw. We have great coaches and staff. We are certainly evolving in the space and I like where we are at." (link)
Coastal Carolina Chair of Athletics/former FB HC Moglia in a guest column for Sportico predicts the “Power 5 will break away from the NCAA within the next three years.” If P5 schools do break away to form their own entity, Moglia suggests they could hire an outside executive committee whose members are unaffiliated with the schools. “That committee would have one job: Do what’s in the best interest of college athletics, one sport at a time, beginning with football, and then basketball. This committee would be charged with negotiating TV deals on behalf of the Power 5, and with devising rules around NIL, player transfers and player compensation. … The NCAA has shown over and over it simply can’t handle the pressure. Instead, athletics directors and conferences need to help guide that process. And as those football programs become more like businesses, they need to bring in business people to run them.” (link)
Sportico’s McCann contextualizes the NIL sanctions levied against Miami (FL) last week, noting that while the violations were “unremarkable, the committee elevated their importance by warning they could trigger dissociation of an NIL-tied booster. The NCAA might be signaling a willingness to litigate potential challenges brought by disassociated boosters, recruits and athletes who are denied NIL opportunities.” McCann explains this could open the door for NIL supporters to sue the NCAA. “Unlike an NCAA member school, which contractually agrees to follow NCAA rules and its administration of rules, a booster isn’t in contract with the NCAA. A booster thus hasn’t contractually relinquished any potential claims. To that end, an expelled booster could sue the NCAA under antitrust law, violation of a state NIL statute, tortious interference and suppressing First Amendment rights.” Athliance CEO Schoenthal, however, tells On3’s Prisbell that the NCAA may welcome such lawsuits because both sides will be entitled to discovery. “If the right case is brought, there are certainly going to be implicating emails and text messages, which is going to allow the NCAA to say, ‘See, we told you so.’” (link, link)
The Athletic’s Auerbach catches up with several stakeholders to discuss the evolution of the Committee on Infractions and the enforcement process. Outgoing MAAC Commissioner Ensor contends the “enterprise is at a crossroads. There’s so much revenue flowing into certain elements of the membership that we have to really think about how we’re going to manage the enterprise if we cannot enforce rules in a fair and equitable manner. There are too many riches available at the end of the (rainbow) for some of the folks that go out and break the rules. We have to have a risk-reward system here in place, and right now there’s no risk to them because we haven’t really had strong enforcement, in my mind, for a while.” More. (link)
Speaking of which, former Tennessee FB ACs Neidermeyer and Felton, along with former Director of Player Personnel Hughes and student assistant Magness, are set to receive show-cause penalties of three-to-five years in negotiated resolutions with the Committee on Infractions for their role in alleged recruiting violations. From the NCAA: “The school and other individuals involved in the case have contested either the alleged violations, the application of certain penalties, or both, and that portion of the case will be considered by the Committee on Infractions during a hearing, after which the committee will release its full decision.” (link, link)
Coaches Corner: Hardwood…
+ Alabama MBB HC Oats has taken the blame for student-athlete Miller’s intro over the weekend, saying: “That situation is on me. We addressed as a team and as soon as I brought it up to them, they immediately understood how it could be interpreted and we all felt awful about it. They explained to me that it's like when TSA checks you before you get on a plane and now Brandon's cleared for takeoff. We, as the adults in the room, should have been more sensitive to how it could have been interpreted. I dropped the ball. That's it. I dropped the ball on it. We've addressed it. I can assure you that it won't happen again." (link)
+ Missouri State AD Moats appears to give a vote of confidence to MBB HC Ford, tweeting that there is “much to be excited for now and in the future under Coach Ford's leadership.” The Springfield News-Leader’s Wheeler reports that “there had been speculation for the entirety of Ford's fifth season as head coach that it could be his last if the team didn't rise above expectations. In recent weeks, sources have told the News-Leader that coaches had expressed interest in the job if it was to become open.” (link)
Coaches Corner: Not Hardwood…
+ Rider names LIU Field Hockey AC Govannicci as the Broncs’ new HC. (link)
+ Austin Peay extends FB HC Walden for another year through the 2025 season. ESPN’s Thamel reports the “new season salary reaches $300K and there’s a significant jump in assistant salary pool.” (link)
+ Richmond inks FB HC Huesman to a multiyear extension, the details of which have yet to be specified. (link)
+ CBS/247Sports’ Pate points out college football coaches' jobs have become exponentially more difficult, prompting many to leave for the NFL. “You’re having to recruit three or four high school classes simultaneous to recruiting your own college class to stay on campus. And then you’re also having to master the NIL game, which is the slipperiest of slopes. You’re having to do all that and also fulfill your coaching duties.” 247’s Marcello subsequently points out that 19 FBS ACs (and counting) have left for NFL jobs this offseason. (link)
Online ticketing platform AudienceView is currently down due to technical difficulties after a nation-wide data breach reported by the company last week that includes payment information for individuals who have used the platform since early February. (link); Per the athletic departments at Northern Michigan and New Orleans, the “system is not expected to be able to resume normal operations for 5-7 days,” and will therefore impact events this weekend. (link, link); Virginia Tech police are reportedly investigating a potential instance of credit card fraud that may have occurred on the AudienceView Campus platform. Hokies Director of News and Information Owczarski: “A number of our students made Virginia Tech Police aware that their credit cards had been hacked into and there were charges against their credit cards that were not their own.” The school is currently working with students and AudienceView to resolve the issue. (link); The issue has also impacted Buffalo, which notes AudienceView reported a data breach that could have impacted up to 292 customers. The company says it will provide “further details along with free credit-monitoring services.” (link)
NCAA Assoc. Director for Division I Championships Bedics tells The Golf Channel’s Romine that 70% of women’s golf coaches who responded to a survey indicated they were in favor of the .500 rule for teams to qualify for regional postseason play, which will take effect with the 2024-25 season. "It opens up opportunities. There are coaches who say there's no way their teams can get inside the bubble even if they win every event. This opens up scheduling a little bit and could allow some teams to maybe get invitations to some tournaments to compete against teams that they normally wouldn't." Romine notes the rule is unpopular among top 50 programs, with Georgia HC Brewer, who was displeased that there was no formal rebuttal period, explaining: “We’ve been fighting it for a decade. We have data, and it's there. ... Teams ranked 150 and below think they need it to get in good tournaments. They just need to get better." (link)
Presidents & Chancellors in the News…
+ Ohio has narrowed the search for its next president down to Ball State Provost Rivera-Mills, Marshall Provost Mukherjee and Louisville Provost/Executive Vice President Gonzalez. (link)
+ Brown President Paxson’s contract will run through June 30, 2026, one year longer than previously announced. (link)
Deals, Deals, Deals…
+ USF partners with Athlete Network to engage current and former student-athletes on the latter’s digital platform. (link)
+ The BIG EAST will utilize ShotTracker technology in the broadcast of its WBB tournament. (link)
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