Yesterday, The Division 1 council voted to approve a bevy of new rules. However instead of going into all of them, lets take a look into the two rules that will have the biggest impacts on the Wake Forest Demon Deacons and the college football landscape as a whole.
First: a new proposal that would open up a new signing window. It has to go through the Conference Commissioners Association in June to fully be implemented, but it is all but sure going to be passed. Now the question remains: What does this mean for Wake Forest Recruiting? Lets break it down a little and how this would affect us here in Winston-Salem
What is it?
With this new rule, December 20th becomes the new winter signing day. The recruits get a new window that will last for 3 days right before Christmas. Note: this doesn’t remove the traditional signing day on the first Wednesday in February which I hold near and dear to my heart.
I’m a big fan of getting the negatives out of the way, so the positives can soften the blow. For the... Academically tailored schools such as Stanford, Georgia Tech, and even Wake to an extent, who have academic admission standards much higher than the NCAA’s minimum, they obviously run into challenges getting recruits than those with... not the highest academic standards.
With an earlier signing period, the students who wish to take part in a program that has strong academics and a good football program, would have to wait until February to actually sign, and with that wait, other schools could and will pounce and try to get them to commit, which would be a large hit.
The biggest challenge, however, would come through the coaching changes. The carousel happens right after the season ends. If the coach that recruited a player is let go after the signing period, which is bound to happen, that recruit is 9 times out of 10 going to want to explore other options, but with this new rule they are stuck.
A rule change like this can play into Wake’s strengths however. Coach Clawson and his staff have been, and are continuing to identify player they want very early and getting them. With an early signing period, they can lock these guys down and not have to worry about high profile schools coming in and flipping them.
Once they get these guys to sign early, they no longer have to worry about recruiting them and can then put all their efforts into addressing the rest of the needs in the recruiting class, rather than having to do it all at once, and aggressively pursue the unsigned targets
The other major rule that was passed was one that will allow teams to have 10 assistant coaches, which would go into effect Jan. 9, 2018. There aren’t too many negatives here as the NCAA(For once!) actually had the foresight to look ahead and push the start date a year in the future to suit smaller schools who may not have the budget to hire one right away. The only negative would be actually in conjunction with the first rule.
This position just adds to another coach that could recruit a kid and could leave for a different school or be fired. On the positives, this could help out by adding another prominent recruiting face. This could also help alleviate some of the duties certain coaches have and allow the Deacons to pull in a specialist to help out in this, for example Wayne Lineburg holds both the Special Teams coordinator as well as coaching the Tight Ends, so the Deacs could very easily bring in a new TE coach.
All in all, I’d say these rules will probably end up helping more than hurting the Deacs, even though i’m not that big of a fan of the new recruiting one. Will this make a substantial impact with the next few recruiting classes? Probably not, but in the words of one Kevin Maurice Garnett, “Anything is possible.” Let us know your thoughts on this in the comments and have a good Easter everyone!