NCAA announces major rule changes coming to college basketball

NCAA basketball changes: Undrafted players can return to school | SI.com

Moreover, with the level that head Texas basketball coach Shaka Smart has recruited at in recent years, the Horns could see these rule changes impact more immensely talented commits to the program.

The NCAA Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors adopted a series of significant policy and legislative changes, setting in motion actions to change the structure of the NCAA fundamentally.

University presidents and chancellors will also now be personally resposible for their athletics programs abiding by the NCAA's rules.

A joint statement from NCAA leaders noted, "These changes will promote integrity in the game, strengthen accountability and prioritize the interests of student-athletes over every other factor".

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The Rice Commission announced its recommendations in April, laying out a future of the sport that looked to eliminate the type of malfeasance that attracted a federal investigation. However, athletes can only officially visit a school once per year. The current rule only permits players to maintain eligibility if they withdraw from the draft 10 days after the National Basketball Association combine, while those who take part in the combine and go undrafted are left with the G League or the prospect of playing overseas. Players will have five days following the draft to declare that they are returning to school.

College players can be represented by an agent beginning after any basketball season if they request an evaluation from the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee.

Agents would be allowed to cover minimal expenses such as meals and transportation tied to meetings or workouts with pro teams. There would not be a financial relationship between the student-athlete and the agent.

The changes were recommended by the Commission on College Basketball, an independent group formed a year ago in response to a recruiting "pay-for-play" scandal that rocked the sport.

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Rice said the vast majority of schools play by the rules but a "win at all cost" approach by others who have been inadequately punished must be changed.

Last month in Las Vegas, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said, "My personal view is that we're ready to make that change, [but] that it won't come immediately". "I don't think it addresses any of the issues in college basketball". Among them: The players most in need of representation and having to go back to school would be ones who weren't selected for the combine, and in some situations, players seeking to return to school will find their scholarship slots filled by someone else. The NCAA plans to pursue more rigorous certification requirements to ensure transparency in operations and finances.

The NCAA also created new rules on when college coaches can see athletes. "We're not in a position to try to say who gets an agent and who does not'".

The NCAA is taking steps to try to clean up college basketball, carving out a limited role for agents to work with players and changing pivotal parts of its rules-enforcement system as part of numerous reforms in the wake of a corruption scandal.

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