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NCAA Approves Early Signing Period for Football

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The NCAA did something good. Or bad, however you see it.

NCAA Football: Northwestern at Purdue Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports

So, the NCAA approved the early signing period for football.

It has its pros and it has its cons, as everything in this world.

For Purdue though? It is probably a pretty good thing, as we tend to lose recruits during National Signing Day and the couple of weeks before hand to bigger programs. Purdue has generally always done a pretty good job on getting on recruits early, but signing them late tends to be the issue.

So, what is good about it?

Pros:

  1. It helps schools, like Purdue, who are middle to lower of the pack of the power 5 schools. It seems like every single year, we find someone early, they give us a verbal and in January or early February, they flip to MSU, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, etc. This can help us by getting the athlete to ink their name in December, leaving less time for a player to change his mind.
  2. Surprises on signing day will be limited. It goes hand in hand with number one, but you wont’ have someone leaving on the day of NSD, if you get them to sign earlier. If a player decides to not sign early, then we could hypothetically just move on to the next player on the list that wants to play for us and sign early. This can go both ways though.
  3. It takes a lot of pressure off of the athletes shoulders. They could have a great year and sign just 2 months later instead of 4 or 5. Coaches won’t be coming in nearly as much to poach players late in the signing period. They can sign, focus on their academics and get it early.

Cons:

  1. The calendar will move back. You will probably see a lot of early offers, sophomore, junior years instead of the middle of their senior season or right after all of the summer camps.
  2. Coaching changes. What if a player sings his LOI in December and his coach gets fired in January after a bowl loss? Or assistant coaches are always moving around, generally by the signing day in February, the coaching carousel has ended. Assistant coaches who primarily recruit can leave for a new job or get fired and the athlete is kind of stuck.
  3. While I listed it as a pro, that kids can sign early and get it over with. There will also be a bunch of pressure to sign and get it over with. From coaches, peers and parents. Maybe they wanted to take it to February? Then, they don’t get the full process. They may not take all 5 of their official visits either, making a quick, rash decision.

Overall:

I like the signing period moving up. It might fast track us to get back to relevance to snag some recruits we would lose late in the process when they get poached away from us. We may be more likely to get some high 3* and 4* kids. Selling immediate playing time and the ability to be in an offense that can score 40 points any given game is appealing.

It will allow us to get some players that with the old signing period we wouldn’t get. It will hurt some of the traditional powerhouses of college football. Overall it is a great thing for us.

What do you guys think?