Make us your home page

Early signing period for football? It's being considered



A major alteration to the college football recruiting calendar -- considered overdue by some, overzealous by others -- could be on the horizon.

The NCAA Division I council announced Wednesday it's considering a proposal to add a pair of 72-hour early signing periods (in June and mid-December) to complement National Signing Day in early February.

Naturally, social media blew up with celebration and cynicism, both well-founded to a degree. Consider some of the ramifications:

1. It would test the level of commitment, by both recruit and school. Programs may not be so forthcoming with their scholarship offers following the spring evaluation period, knowing a kid could sign in June. On the flip side, if a kid is truly "committed" to a program and has an offer, he can sign eight months earlier than normal, thereby avoiding the potential commit/de-commit/re-commit melodrama.

2. A batch of early signees would help a school determine its exact needs down the stretch of recruiting season, meaning coaches could home in on specific kids instead of having to continue re-recruiting two-dozen "committed" (but unsigned) prospects.

3. It could hamstring dozens -- maybe hundreds -- of kids who sign early with a school, only to see that school's coach get fired in December.

4. National Signing Day, a de facto national holiday in some segments of the country, would be rendered far less relevant.

"Before I see any plans for an early signing period, I need to know what the plan is for a coaching change," veteran Florida-based 247Sports recruiting analyst Josh Newberg said. "They've got to have an answer for that."

Truth be told, they probably have to come up with answers for several hypothetical situations before this proposal gets ratified.

Stay tuned.

[Last modified: Wednesday, October 5, 2016 7:34pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours