First, in regards to Normally, athletes have to pass 24 credits in a year to remain eligible.:
I hope to hell that the NCAA also has some sort of GPA requirement to go along with that, because 24 credits worth of Ds, sure doesn’t equal progression towards a degree.
Yes, I realize that 24 credits over 5 years equals the 120 credits that is the minimum required for some degrees. Yes, I realize that a non-athlete student is allowed to take 12 credits per semester. However, it’s been my experience, as both a student and employee at Penn State, that students with a 12 credit load is far from the norm.
My main issue with the pass 24 credits in a year to remain eligible is that since scholarships are only guaranteed for one year is that it creates the situation where the student athlete is pressured by the coaching staff to only take/pass the minimum amount of classes, and then not asked to come back for that fifth year when they turn out to be a bench player.
But let’s just put the pass 24 credits in a year to remain eligible aside for a moment. and address the full-time vs. part-time student issue. There are many things at a college where being a full-time student is required. Academic scholarships, financial-aid, etc. I believe that athletics should be another one.
Last time I checked, the premise of college athletics is that the athletics were supposed to be an extracurricular activity. So if I understand the NCAA rules correctly, student athletes only have to pass 24 credits per year. So we’re talking 12 credits per semester. 12 credits is roughly 12 hours per week in the class room. NCAA regulations also say can’t practice more than 20 hours a week. Sounds more like those 12 hours of classes per week are extra-athletic activities.
Now let’s talk about a athlete who only needs 3 credits to graduate. Does three hours in the class and 20 hours of practice sound like a student athlete? Three hours vs twenty hours. Which is the extra activity? Student athletes should be full time students. God forbid we ask a student athlete to take an extra class or two.
Here’s a thought. If the NCAA wants to show concern for the education of its student athletes, why not change their rules so that the maximum hours allowed for practice is less than the minimum number of credits passed. Say 12 hours of practice vs 15 credits per semester? After all, it seems that exceeding the maximum hours of practice is one of the few rules that they have had success in proving and penalizing.
What really makes me laugh was that is seems that schools were objecting to this:
The new rule for football requires players who don’t pass nine credits in the fall semester to sit out four games the following season.
If a student can’t pass nine credits, they need to cut back on the extracurriculars.