New NCAA Policies Address Basketball's Integrity

Report: NBA, USA Basketball blindsided by NCAA's proposed rule changes

The nation's "elite" high school and college basketball recruits will be allowed to hire agents while attending high school or college.

The NCAA launched a commission and set of subcommittees to address the fallout from the FBI investigation into the college basketball industry, resulting in several policy shifts, including the assigning of responsibility to USA Basketball for something the organization had already told the NCAA it wanted no part: bearing responsibility for selecting elite senior high school prospects who will be allowed to sign with registered agents. It also attempts to help the other end of the spectrum as well, allowing star players who opted to leave school early but went undrafted.

The NCAA's current rule permits players to maintain eligibility if they withdraw from the draft 10 days after the National Basketball Association combine.

"'One-and-done' has played a significant role in corrupting and destabilizing college basketball, restricting the freedom of choice of players, and undermining the relationship of college basketball to the mission of higher education", the commission's report said. The changes go into effect this year.

"I'll give you an example: I'm here in the Bahamas, and the CEO of USA Basketball, Jim Tooley, is here and he's saying, 'Wait a minute".

"It doesn't accurately define or depict how well and closely we've been working and communicating with them throughout this whole thing", Gavitt said of the report. They must ask for an evaluation from the NBA's Undergraduate advisory Committee. The agents can cover minimal costs, such as meals and travel expenses related to gauging interest in professional opportunities. However, the agent must be certified by the NCAA. But a distinct irony exists in the inclusion of agents into the recruitment process when their activity was part of what created college basketball's myriad problems that prompted Federal Bureau of Investigation involvement.

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At least one prominent coach, Kentucky's John Calipari, wondered aloud as to how that will work. That included the appointment of Rice-recommended independent groups to handle and resolve complex cases, with Emmert estimating it would apply to maybe five cases annually.

One of the NCAA's biggest changes involved its definition of draft eligibility.

On the enforcement side, the NCAA said those investigating NCAA cases can now accept information established by another administrative body, such as courts of law or government agencies.

The reforms also call for more transparency around amateur events and hold university presidents and chancellors accountable for noncompliance within the athletic department.

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