New NCAA recruiting rules: What it means for coaches

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Sunday January 20, 2013

Posted by: Chris Vannini on January 20, 2013

College coaches' lives are about to get much busier.

Aiming to simplify rules and ease "the administrative burden," the NCAA passed 25 of 26 proposals at its convention, a number of them dealing with recruiting.

The new legislation was announced Saturday.

Among the changes, which will take effect on Aug. 1, most notable is the elimination of limits on phone calls and private communication with recruits. There also will be no limit on the number of coaches who can recruit off-campus and an elimination of rules defining recruiting functions that must be performed by a head or assistant coach.

That last rule means non-coaching staff members will be able to contact recruits. The only restriction is that they cannot recruit off-campus.

With this deregulation, the NCAA is accepting that some schools will have natural competitive advantages. With this additional recruiting freedom, it would seem to benefit the big schools with more money.

"We're not going to try and overcome those natural competitive advantages that people have," NCAA president Mark Emmert said, according to the AP. "But when student-athletes step on the field, they know that the other team's got the same number of players, they've got the same number of coaches, they've got the same number of scholarships.

"'They may have a fancier stadium, they may have other resource advantages, but we've got a chance to beat these guys because there's competitive fairness.'"

Other proposals passed include allowing schools to treat prospects as student-athletes once their National Letter of Intent is signed, rather than when they enroll in class. Restrictions on printed materials sent to recruits also have been eliminated, meaning you can send as many big media guides and letters to recruits as you want.

The one proposal that was tabled would allow coaches to start contacting recruits beginning July 1 following their sophomore year. It will be looked at again in April.

At the AFCA convention, a number of coaches were worried about their already-high time commitment increasing as a result of these proposals. That's going to happen, because if you're not making that extra call to a recruit, a rival could be.

Make sure you keep those phones charged.

You can see the entire list of passed proposals by clicking here.



Chris Vannini is the lead writer for and has covered Michigan State sports for The State News, The Oakland Press and He writes a weekly column for the Detroit Free Press on behalf of SB Nation. Vannini lives in Big Ten country, so his foot speed is far from SEC caliber, but his pulse on coaches is hard to match. Be sure to follow @CoachingBuzz on twitter and send your feedback to

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to

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