The NCAA votes for eligibility extension for athletes in sports cut short by the coronavirus. The Division I Council will vote on Monday on the fate of student-athletes in softball, baseball, and lacrosse.
Also, the council will consider similar action on winter sports student-athletes, such as wrestlers and players in hockey and basketball. However, it looked like there’s no support for the eligibility extension among college sports administrators.
According to sportsbook pay per head sources, winter sports have already ended their regular season tournament or concluded most of their regular-season games. That’s why there are apprehensions about extending the athletes’ eligibility.
NCAA Votes for Eligibility Extension
Division II already approved an extra year of eligibility. Also, it will provide financial aid for all spring sport athletes, according to bookie pay per head reports. However, discussions are still ongoing in Division I.
The Division I Council has representatives from all conferences. After the council vote, the Division I Board of Directors will have the opportunity to approve it or return the issue to the council for further discussions.
Although there’s a momentum of extending eligibility of spring athletes, some administrators have their reservations. According to PayPerHead reports, NCAA bylaws limit scholarships. It is a tricky issue, especially in sports, where most athletes don’t get full scholarships. Paying additional scholarships would be expensive.
There are uncertainties when sports will continue. Postponing the decision on the eligibility of athletes might be the best option for the NCAA. According to Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, there is a chance that the virus will be back next year. If it disrupts the schedule again, will the NCAA offer athletes another year of eligibility?
These are the concerns of some members schools and colleges. Some conferences will make their decisions by Friday, in time for the council vote on Monday.