The NCAA has been a laughable debacle over the last decade and that situation has become worse under the organization’s President Mark Emmert. In fact, the way the NCAA has governed college athletics has been so controversial, that a couple of members of the United States House of Representatives talked about passing legislation to force the NCAA to change. In fact, the Pac-12 athletic conference has sent out a letter to the presidents of the universities in the other power conferences (ACC, SEC, Big-12, and the Big Ten) with 10-points that they would like to see changed.
These 10-points that were made by the Pac-12 presidents made include giving the student athletes a greater voice in the decision-making process, providing medical assistance or insurance to athletes injury while participating in their scholarship sport, decrease demands on the athletes during the athletic season, giving the athletes a bigger say in the decision-making process, give the major conferences more autonomy, etc.
These things that the presidents are asking for basically lines up with what the College Athletics Player Association wants. But the big thing about the Pac-12 sending this letter out, is that the forces for change are coming from within the college athletics structure and not by outside forces, like the union. This means that there are cracks forming with in the NCAA, and that something is going to have to change…or the whole thing could come crumbling down.
What do I mean by crumbling down? Well, take a look at this quote from the AP article:
“The NCAA is working on a new governance structure that will allow the five wealthiest conferences to make some rules without the support of smaller Division I schools.”
This shows that the NCAA is well aware that it needs to appease these larger Division 1 schools, because if these schools get fed up and splinter off from the NCAA…and if that happens, then you can kiss the NCAA’s multi-billion dollar annual income goodbye.
Now that the Pac-12 is putting pressure on the NCAA to make these reforms, the question becomes; is the NCAA going to make these reforms (and therefore keep the smaller D1 schools competitive), or are these decisions going to be left to the power conferences and therefore make it even harder for the mid-major conferences to compete?
One of those decisions will not only benefit the NCAA, but all of the schools that it oversees…and the other one will irreversible change the landscape of college athletics.