At its January 2012 board meeting, the NCAA is set to vote on reductions to the number of athletic scholarships that it provides to football and basketball players, and the number of regular season games across all sports. These recent changes come as the result of surveying of NCAA members at the 2011 NCAA Presidential Retreat, which a working group was then tasked with reviewing and making recommendations. Now that this process is finished, the results are to be presented to the NCAA Board of Directors for final approval before taking effect sometime next year.
January NCAA Presentation to Recommend Cut to Athletic Scholarships
In its presentation to the NCAA Board next month (warning: PDF link), the Resource Allocation Working Group – chaired by University of Georgia President Michael Adams – will recommend cuts to the number of athletic scholarships that a school can offer in both college football and college basketball. Here’s a breakdown of the reductions:
- FBS football scholarships from 85 to 80.
- FCS football scholarships from 63 to 60.
- Men’s basketball scholarships from 13 to 12.
- Women’s basketball scholarships from 15 to 13. (Note: These scholarships will be reapportioned to other women’s sports.)
While the women’s athletic scholarships that are being cut will be moved off to sports like softball and soccer, there will be no such support for male student athletes. As a whole, this change means that the NCAA will be cutting hundreds of athletic scholarships throughout the country starting in January 2013.
On top of this, the Resource Allocation Working Group is also recommending that the NCAA cut the regular season length by 10 percent across all sports:
Voted in favor of a 10 percent reduction in regular-season competition for all sports. However, if the elimination of non-championship segment competition is passed by the Division I Board, credit would be given for non-championship reductions.
On top of all of this, the working group also decided that a reduction in “non-coaching” staff in various sports programs needed a reduction as well. Cut the athletic scholarships, cut the games, and cut the staff.
NCAA Working Group Suggests FAFSA for All Student Athletes
It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that the NCAA recommends that all student athletes “should submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)” during their time at college. It’s somewhat disheartening to hear that students who are supposedly on “full ride” athletic scholarships should have to rely on education grants and student loans to ensure that they have enough cash on hand to cover living expenses, but that’s how the NCAA works. Forget the fact that many college sports bring in revenues ranging from the millions to the billions of dollars – give the students as little as possible.
To sum the story up: in exchange for a possible $2,000 boost to athletic scholarships, student athletes will see a reduction in the number of scholarships, and shortened seasons. Is this a victory? You decide.