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NCAA

Coronavirus Attacks Sports: College Athletes Get To Run It Back in 2021

NCAA says athletes can play again next year, but recruiting is dead for a minute. 

Image Credit: Getty Images

We thought it was a good idea. Many people did. The NCAA agrees as it will grant spring student-athletes relief for a season of eligibility after canceling winter and spring championships due to the coronavirus outbreak, officials announced Friday.

Iowa track and field senior Allison Wahrman created a petition on Change.org asking the NCAA to grant seniors another year of eligibility.

I wrote a piece early Friday suggesting that the NCAA give all student-athletes that lose their Spring sports opportunities a rewind. It didn’t take a genius to realize that granting another year was in the best interest of the student-athletes. A way to soften the blow of losing an entire season or getting blindsided in the middle of a tournament game.  

“Council leadership agreed that eligibility relief is appropriate for all Division I student-athletes who participated in spring sports,” the NCAA said in a statement. “Details of eligibility relief will be finalized at a later time. Additional issues with the NCAA rules must be addressed, and appropriate governance bodies will work through those in the coming days and weeks.”

There’s sure to be more stipulations such as the eligible students having to find their own housing. But it’s a start.

While the change is great news for those already enrolled in college, the changes to recruiting practices as a precaution to spreading the coronavirus make the already highly competitive nature of the job much harder. Face-to-face visits usually make or break a recruit or recruiter’s decision. 

The immediate ban on in-person recruiting for coaches and the recruiting dead period will last until April 15. 

Colleges have also been directed to suspend any visits to the campus by recruits. This is another instance of how deeply COVID-19 has affected the traditional operations and culture of how certain things are done. 

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