The NCAA hammered Penn State today to the tune of:
- $60 million fine.
- Four-year bowl ban (more in practice).
- Loss of scholarships.
- Allowing players to transfer immediately.
- No Big Ten bowl revenues ($13 million a year).
That last one could be the big one in the short term. Donovan Smith, for one, said on Twitter yesterday: “Stop asking if im transferring im staying at PSU no matter what I love my school
But it will be interested to watch how many Nittany Lions #StillAre come September 1, when the season kicks off against Ohio.
The people talking smart on ESPN this morning said they didn’t think players would leave immediately because scholarships at most schools are already taken for the coming season.
Not so fast, my friend!
Here are the special Penn State transfer rules from the NCAA:
- Football student-athletes who transfer will not have to sit out a year of competition. Any incoming or currently enrolled football student-athlete will be immediately eligible upon transfer or initial enrollment at an NCAA institution, provided they are admitted and otherwise eligible per NCAA regulations.
- Penn State will release any incoming student-athletes from the National Letter of Intent.
- Permission-to-contact rules will be suspended. Penn State cannot restrict in any way a student-athlete from pursuing a possible transfer. Student-athletes must simply inform Penn State of their interest in discussing transfer options with other schools. Interested schools also must inform Penn State of their intention to open discussions with the student-athlete.
- Official and unofficial visit rules will be loosened. Any incoming or currently enrolled football student-athletes interested in taking an official or unofficial visit will be permitted to do so during the 2012-13 academic year, no matter how many visits they took during their recruitment. Institutions seeking to provide an official visit to a student who already visited the school as many times as NCAA legislation allows can seek relief from the NCAA on a case-by-case basis.
Not only that:
- Additionally, the NCAA is considering waiving scholarship limits for programs to which these football student-athletes transfer, provided they reduce proportionately in the next year. For example, the limit is 25 new scholarships per year to a total of 85 scholarships. If the limits are waived in 2012-13 to accommodate one Penn State student-athlete who wishes to transfer to a particular school already at the limits, in 2013-14 the school will be limited to 24 new scholarships and 84 total scholarships.
That is flexibility and foresight that is rarely demonstrated by the NCAA.