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Yahoo Sports’ Dan Wetzel and Pete Thamel, and Sports Illustrated’s Pat Forde discuss the new transfer rule in the NCAA, which allows athletes to transfer once without penalty, and how the new rule will affect recruiting and coaching styles.
DAN WETZEL: Big issue this week is the NCAA Division I Council. The one time no penalty transfer. Go whatever school you want.
PAT FORDE: The reality is people want to be able to transfer without penalty, and they should be able to, like they can in every other sport in college athletics. It's OK. They will be able to do this, and yes, I think there's going to be this surge now.
I eventually think it's going to calm down. My only hope is that the NCAA, which says they will maintain a waiver policy, gets really strict about the waiver policy. And 99% of the time says, no, you are not getting a second transfer for free. You got your one. That's the rule.
That's fine. But after that, here's the deal, so we'll see how it plays out on that front. But this is the 53rd example of the Cassandra's in college sports saying this is the ruination of college sports, and it won't be the ruination of college sports.
DAN WETZEL: This is all-- all of it was about guys, coaches enjoying that they could just set their roster, right? And go on vacation or whatever, just didn't have to do spring recruiting, all the stuff. Sorry, you're making $5 million a year. The coach is crying in the bathroom. How will I know my roster? Like what, like the NFL?
They don't know the roster. The bit, where, if you transferred, there's some kind of state secrets that this kid is going to be able to tell someone else. We have to play that team. In the NFL, guys switch by the week. They were on the Jets last week, and they're on the-- the Patriots would always sign a guy from the Jets.
PETE THAMEL: Every week.
DAN WETZEL: If you're offense or your defense, your scheme, or your secrets are so simple that some kid who is most likely not a major part of the program will leave and then reveal them to someone else in your conference that you may or may not play this year, and you will lose, then you shouldn't be the head coach. This is what it's going to be. Guys are going to transfer, and you have to work every day on creating an environment that people want to be a part of. And that's why you look at that Alabama won the National title this year on the strength of a 2017 recruiting class, 2016 recruiting, whatever year it was.
DAN WETZEL: Those guys-- '17. Jones, Harris, these guys weren't playing as freshmen. They stuck around, and stuck around, and stuck around. And when it was their turn, they crushed it. Nick Saban's got that culture in place to win, so I think those are going to be the big things.
What are you creating that makes people want to stay? You know, I've seen this bemoaning. There's 1,500 kids in the transfer portal. There's only going to be 700 spots, 700 kids.
We need to protect the kids. No, let them make stupid decisions. Deal with it. That's America.
PETE THAMEL: I'm very curious now in football and basketball, how this changes the recruiting approach. Just like, philosophically, how do you fill your roster? How much energy do you put on high school recruits, who there is, now, at least, a 25% chance that they're going to leave? Because they're not good enough, or they're too good.
PAT FORDE: Right.
PETE THAMEL: The entire landscape is completely going to transform in both sports, and the aspect of the old guard coach, oh, he needs to work through adversity. Well, these kids aren't going to work through adversity. When they don't play, they're going to leave, and then Dan touched on it a little bit with the how do you treat your players.
Is this going to officially mark the death of the autocrat? And then usher in the P.J. Fleck's, and Will Healy's, and the positivity, the experience, the new age coach. Is this going to be, like, a mile marker in how coaching looks and feels different?
PAT FORDE: I think it will be. I think it's a very good point, and I do think it will. I think it already has been to a degree, and I think that will continue and probably accelerate. There will be even more of a premium put on guys who don't sit-in the office, and don't just yell at your players, and get out. And hey, try to know them as people, and relate to them in that way.
And one other thing that I will say that-- for the last, like, four or five years, I've watched this. I will be watching it even more now with this new rule, that the post game handshake lines, assuming we are going back to handshake lines. Just watch the coaches, where they stop and linger a little bit longer with somebody on the opposing team, and I always wonder. Are they saying, hey, when you're ready to transfer, you know, we're here? We would like to have you.