SBJ/September 30 - October 6, 2002/Other News

ADs ask NCAA to simplify rule-making

Division I-A athletic directors, frustrated with the current NCAA governance structure, are calling for the organization to simplify its rule-making processes.

At its annual meeting last week, the Division I-A Athletic Directors Association, which comprises ADs from all 117 I-A schools, decided to forward a recommendation to the NCAA asking it to simplify its legislative cycle from two cycles a year to one. The change would make proposed legislation easier to track and give ADs more time to study the issues.

The recommendation is one of what is expected to be several that will come from the I-A athletic directors group in the coming months, said the association's executive director, Dutch Baughman.

Earlier this year, the association publicly stated its unhappiness with the current NCAA governance structure and established its own committee of athletic directors and faculty athletic representatives to study NCAA governance. As part of their research, the committee, which is chaired by Iowa Athletic Director Bob Bowlsby, sent out a governance survey this spring to all I-A athletic departments. The results of the study were discussed last Monday and Tuesday and used to help develop recommendations to forward to the NCAA.

In addition to its NCAA governance discussions, the I-A association decided last week that it needs to develop its own system to inform and help its members wade through pending Division I rules and regulations.

Since a representative form of governance was put in place for Division I in 1997, Division I-A athletic directors said they have felt that they are being left out of the NCAA's governing process and that there's a feeling of disenfranchisement from the national governing body. To address that problem the association, through its board of trustees and executive director, will develop a process that will provide pending legislative information throughout the year to its members.

In addition, time will be carved out during future I-A annual meetings for a legislative caucus. The caucus will encourage discussion of key legislation at a national level, recapturing what was lost as result of the 1997 NCAA restructuring, Baughman said.

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