NCAA FORMS PANEL TO STUDY FRESHMAN INELIGIBILITY PROPOSAL
A panel of 27 members formed by the NCAA, which
includes school presidents, athletic directors and former
Univ. of NC coach Dean Smith, "has been studying a plan to
make freshmen ineligible for both men's and women's
basketball," according to Frank Litsky of the N.Y. TIMES.
The group will convene in Chicago on June 23 and again in
July and "hopes to put together its recommendations then."
The recommendations will then be forwarded to the NCAA Board
of Directors, "which will decide what to do." NCAA
President Cedric Dempsey supports the idea of freshman
ineligibility for basketball and said that the proposal
would have a "50-50" chance of being passed (N.Y. TIMES,
6/10). Dempsey noted that an adoption of the proposal could
mean many high school players will enter the NBA draft
rather than sit out a year in college. Dempsey: "College
isn't for everybody" (USA TODAY, 6/9). Univ. of TX Senior
Assistant AD and panel member Chris Plonsky called reports
stating that women's basketball will be included in the
proposal "totally inaccurate" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 6/10).
IS THERE SUPPORT? In Charlotte, Gregg Doyel obtained
minutes from a meeting of an NCAA "working group," which
"overwhelmingly recommends" some type of freshman
ineligibility (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 6/10). But in DC,
Michael Rosenberg writes that "there is significant
opposition to the idea," as an NCAA survey last fall showed
that 74.7% of administrators and coaches either "disagree"
or "strongly disagree" with the proposal (WASHINGTON POST,
6/10). In Cincinnati, Mike DeCourcy writes that the
committee "probably will recommend" that freshmen become
eligible after their first semester (CIN. ENQUIRER, 6/10).
REAX: The WASHINGTON TIMES' Dan Daly: "If our society
says it's OK to play pro basketball right out of high
school, how can it not be OK to play college basketball?"
(WASHINGTON TIMES, 6/10). NC State Univ. AD Les Robinson:
"I think (more players leaving high school for the NBA)
would be fine. That way, they don't have to waste their
time taking classes for a year. ... Playing professional
basketball is not a sin" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 6/10).