Interview: What do new NCAA rules mean for women's basketball recruiting?

Jim Brown-US PRESSWIRE

The NCAA recently adopted a new recruiting model for women's basketball, as described by Michelle Brutlag Hosick at NCAA.org. For some insight on what those changes actually mean for women's basketball recruiting, Swish Appeal had the opportunity to interview Myndee Kay Larsen who is both the chair of the Leadership Council Women's Basketball Recruiting Subcommittee and the Senior Associate Commissioner of the Summit League.

Can you talk about the influence of the men's basketball game with these rules changes. Simply stated, with the success and growth on the men's basketball side and its parity, it seems like you all wanted to create a more equal playing field on the women's side -- is that a fair assessment?

“Both genders desired improvements in the recruiting environment and a streamlining of processes. Even though the men's basketball recruiting subcommittee did their work first, the women's basketball constituents were in the process of tracking, studying and preparing to undertake the same endeavor as the men’s. So, they were somewhat working concurrently.”

Can you explain the "tryouts" rule?

“The “try-outs” rule, or on-campus evaluations, are a tool meant to compliment the traditional recruiting system. It allows high school seniors, two-year college prospects, and four-year transfers to be evaluated and directed by Division I coaches for possible addition to the team rosters. It should help provide those prospects who are not signed by the conclusion of their season another opportunity to perform for Division I coaches.

“Prospects during an official or unofficial visit can participate in an on-campus evaluation no longer than two hours and an institution may only provide one on-campus evaluation per prospect.”

It also seems like you want to cut down on exhaustive nature of the evaluation weekends in the summer, is that correct?

“Prior to the women's basketball subcommittee's work, the women's basketball coaches had adopted a format to make July recruiting more manageable. Seven days recruiting, 10 days off, seven days recruiting in July is the format they currently work with.”

Can you elaborate more on this rule: "Creates a summer-access model that requires enrollment in summer school or a certain level of academic achievement in order for student-athletes to participate in eight hours per week of weight training, conditioning and skill instruction (two-hour limit on skill instruction) for an eight-week period in the summer. An institution’s summer school schedule dictates access (for example, a six-week summer school session would permit participation in athletics activities for six weeks), unless the student-athlete achieves academic benchmarks."

“The summer access model essentially states that if a student-athlete is enrolled in summer school, they can work out with their coach eight hours a week for a maximum of eight weeks. However, these workouts are limited to the duration of a summer session. For instance, if an institution's summer school session runs six weeks, then workouts for enrolled student-athletes can only run six weeks. The only way for a student-athlete to be permitted to participate in these summer work-outs without being enrolled in summer school is if she meets certain academic standards.

"After the first year of collegiate enrollment, the student-athlete has to present a 2.2 GPA and successfully complete 30 semester/45 quarter credit hours. The 2.2 GPA remains constant but as the student-athlete progresses in school the degree completion requirements increase. If a student-athlete meets these academic benchmarks, they can participate in summer work-outs without being enrolled in summer school; otherwise the summer school component is required.”

What were some of the member institutions' concerns/feedback that compelled you to make changes that you all have made?

“The changes were meant to develop a recruiting process that was more efficient, streamlined, and easy for a prospect to understand. It was also developed to provide coaching staffs the opportunity to balance their responsibilities between developing current student-athletes and recruiting future student-athletes."

For more on these rules changes, check out NCAA.org's overview.

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