The Big Ten is looking to finally change the NCAA's ridiculous transfer rules.
A report on Friday by Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports claims the Big Ten proposed legislation last year that would allow players in every sport to transfer once without having to sit out a year at their new institution. This would be a massive change to how the NCAA does business and would be a rare athlete-first initiative.
Michigan's athletic director Warde Manuel talked to CBS Sports and claimed, "I think it's the right thing to do." He continued, "I don't know who's going to freak out and who's not going to freak out. That doesn't come into my thinking about it."
A lot of people will likely freak out. But Manuel is correct that it's the right thing to do for the players. Dodd pointed out how ridiculous the current rule is:
"Athletes in only five sports are required to sit for a season when transferring: men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball, hockey and football. In the NCAA's 20 other sports, athletes are allowed a one-time. The difference in the two transfer policies is getting harder to rationalize."
The Big Ten seems unified behind the rule change, and it should be.
The NCAA's current transfer model is silly. We're asking 17- and 18-year-old kids to make decisions about where they want to attend college. They make their picks based on a whole host of reasons. Sometimes they get fooled or sold a bill of goods by coaches, sometimes their coaches leave, sometimes they wind up homesick and sometimes they just feel uncomfortable in their new surroundings. They should be allowed a chance to rectify those mistakes and wind up somewhere they're more comfortable.
The current system is a mess of transfers where some players are approved to play immediately and others have to sit out a year for seemingly arbitrary reasons. This would change it with a blanket rule that kids could play immediately on their first transfer.