Trump Waiver Would Allow Service-Academy Athletes To Turn Pro
President Trump "may reverse a Defense Department rule which requires athletes from the service academies to fulfill their active-duty requirement before pursuing a professional sports career," according to Leo Shane III of the MILITARY TIMES. Trump, made the announcement yesterday while honoring the Army football team with the Commander-in-Chief Trophy. He said, "I am going to look at doing a waiver for service academy athletes who can get into the major leagues: the NFL, hockey, baseball. They can serve their time after they are done with professional sports.” In '16, the Defense Department adopted a new policy "allowing some service academy athletes to request to be placed on reserve status to allow them to accept contracts from professional sports teams." Former Navy QB Keenan Reynolds was drafted by the Ravens that year and "received permission to play with the team on a reserve assignment." But a year later, military leaders "rescinded that policy." Trump did "not offer any specifics on the timing of the policy change or what the specific requirements for the waivers may entail" (MILITARYTIMES.com, 5/6). The Pentagon announced yesterday that it will "continue to enforce its current policy, which requires athletes who graduate from military service academies and Reserve Officer Training Corps programs to commit to two years of active-duty military service" (USATODAY.com, 5/6).