Last week, we started the conversation around the new NCAA regulations involving college basketball. If you missed part 1, you can catch up here. This week, we wanted to dive in a little deeper and explore how these regulations along with more possible changes to come could effect high school athletes and their transition into college athletics.
First, let’s examine the current state of draft eligibility….
In case you didn’t know, here’s a run down on a few of the major sports and their drafting abilities:
“To be eligible for the draft, players must have been out of high school for at least three years and must have used up their college eligibility before the start of the next college football season. Underclassmen and players who have graduated before using all their college eligibility may request the league’s approval to enter the draft early.” (NFL)
“The basic categories of players eligible to be drafted are:
High school players, if they have graduated from high school and have not yet attended college or junior college;
College players, from four-year colleges who have either completed their junior or senior years or are at least 21 years old;
Junior college players, regardless of how many years of school they have completed” (MLB)
“Player must be 19 years old during draft calendar year, and at least one season has passed since graduation of high school.” (Draft Site)
Clearly, it’s a complicated process. While some may find this annoying or over the top, the regulations have been put in place with student athletes in mind.
On one hand these regulations….
– Give a high school student time to mature, grow, and get a quality education
– More space to become a mature adult
– Time to decide what they would like their professional athletic career to look like and grow as an athlete
On the other hand….
– There are athletes who are ready to take the next step and want to being their career immediately
– Financially speaking, going pro makes far more sense for them
So, now we’ve set the stage. With the new regulations in mind, what could happen / how would this effect high school athletes?
1. Under the new regulations, a high school basket player will be permitted to obtain an agent, as early as the summer before his / her senior year.
College players can be represented by an agent after any season if they have requested an “evaluation from the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee,” but must end the relationship if they return to school. If a high school player has been designated an “elite senior prospect” by USA Basketball, the player can be represented beginning July 1 before their senior year. (SI)
2. Agents can now work with a high school athlete for an entire year before they even graduate from high school.
3. While agents and high school basketball players would not be allowed to continue their relationship while the athlete was in their freshman year of college, they could pick up the relationship the following year if the athlete wanted to consider the pro route.
So, what does this all mean?
For years, specific procedures and policies have been put in place to protect student athletes from those who would take advantage, hurt their education, and not give them the room to actually be a college student.
In light of the new regulations, it’s worrisome that some of these things could be infiltrating the high school campus, well before a student even graduated. What does this say about the importance of education or allowing a student to actually mature into an adult? It raises some interesting thoughts. Even more so, if other sports begin to follow these types of changes, what does the high school athletic landscape begin to look like?
Once again, we want to know what YOU think! Let us know below!