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Division I continues to address impact of COVID-19

Recruiting dead period extended to May 31

In keeping with the NCAA Board of Governors directive to enact legislative modifications and waivers to provide relief to student-athletes and schools impacted by COVID-19, Division I took additional actions this week to protect the health and well-being of student-athletes, prospects, coaches, administrators and staff.

In addition to Monday’s decision on spring sports eligibility, the Division I Council Coordination Committee on Wednesday extended the recruiting dead period until May 31. The committee will continue to be guided by experts to determine whether the date should be extended.

The extension includes the traditional spring evaluation periods for men’s and women’s basketball coaches to attend certified events hosted by entities other than schools. The Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees supported the extension, as did the National Association of Basketball Coaches, Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and the administrative committee of the Division I Football Oversight Committee.

“This decision is in the best interest of prospective student-athletes and coaches and allows basketball event operators ample time to determine the future of their events,” said Council chair M. Grace Calhoun, athletics director at Pennsylvania. “The Council and the Council Coordination Committee will continue to monitor this and other issues as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.”

The Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees will consider whether to establish alternative evaluation periods for NCAA-certified events later this year. The oversight committees will rely on professional medical guidance provided by the NCAA COVID-19 Advisory Panel and will consider local circumstances on member campuses when making final recommendations to the Division I Council.

The day after the coordination committee’s decision, the Collegiate Commissioners Association determined that all Division I and II sports will be in a signing period from April 15 to Aug. 1, 2020, including Division I basketball and football.

In addition to the recruiting action, the Council Coordination Committee also tabled most of the legislation that remained in the 2019-20 legislative cycle, which had been set for a full Council vote at the group’s April meeting. Clearing the April meeting of the legislative agenda will focus the group’s attention on addressing the impact of COVID-19, as well as recommendations from the Division I Name, Image and Likeness Legislative Solutions group.

In April, the full Council will consider proposals 2019-116 and 2019-117, which would change enrollment requirements for graduate transfers, and 2019-123 and 2019-123-1, which would change rules surrounding multiple team events in men’s basketball.

Also in the regulatory space, the NCAA released a frequently asked questions document that addressed the application of NCAA rules in the wake of COVID-19. 

Finally this week, the Eligibility Center announced it will not require a separate review of distance or e-learning programs used by schools with NCAA-approved core courses that have moved to distance or e-learning environments for spring and summer 2020 due to school closures related to COVID-19. Students are encouraged to complete their NCAA-approved core courses through the channels of instruction provided or recommended by their school, district or state department of education.