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Thursday, March 11, 2004

Funding of Recruiting Visits: Testifying before Congress today, S. David Berst, the chairman of an NCAA task force reviewing recruiting policies, spelled out numerous proposed changes to NCAA rules. The changes include reducing the allowed visitation time from 48 to 24 hours, prohibiting off-campus entertainment and limiting the amount that could be spent on plane tickets and hotels. Perhaps the most sweeping proposal is one that would eliminate funded recruiting trips. I see this as an exceedingly bad idea. Primarily, it will unfairly burden poorer recruits who cannot afford to take many (or possibly even one) long-distance trip to visit a school. This will result in more recruits choosing a school site-unseen, which could lead to more mistakes necessitating transfers. It could also cause some athletes to choose the pros over a college they have never seen. Limitations on visits are a good policy, but visits need to continue to be funded.


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