Under new rules adopted last week, a prospective student athletes’ college search is set to look a little different.
Designed to curb on early recruiting, the proposal for most sports, including soccer would allow communication — either from or to a coach — on June 15 after the sophomore year of high school and would allow visits beginning Aug. 1 before the junior year of high school. Prior to those dates, zero communication is permitted between a college coach and club coaches or players. That includes any offers of a verbal scholarship.
“We feel strongly that it’s an incredible enhancement to our current situation and how students are being recruited,” Justin Sell, athletics director at South Dakota State and chair of the Student-Athlete Experience Committee, said in a statement. “At the end of the day, these changes will eliminate students in the ninth grade and younger being recruited while still providing access to our campuses early enough to make informed financial and educational decisions on where to go for college.”
The latest early recruiting review was undertaken by a subcommittee within the Student-Athlete Experience Committee, which will continue to work on regulating verbal scholarship offers. By opening the door to earlier communication, the stated goal is to allow a potential student-athlete a longer time to get to know his or her future coaching staff.
Approved last week during the Division I Council meetings on Thursday and Friday, it marks the second straight year the NCAA is tweaking rules as early recruiting continues to run rampant in a number of different sports.
The recruiting proposals are set to go into effect for soccer at the close of the Division I Board of Directors meeting on May 1.