USA Basketball, NBA 'blindsided' by new NCAA agent rule

What the new NCAA rules mean for college basketball

The changes also allow high school athletes more time and latitude in committing to a college basketball team. Previously, players who hired an agent lost their eligibility.

After an FBI investigation found in September that several Division I college basketball coaches were implicated in recruiting bribery, the NCAA wanted to change up some rules to safeguard themselves from ever having to clean up this mess again. Under previous rules, players could "test the waters" of National Basketball Association interest, but had to withdraw from draft consideration 10 days after the combine.

They'll also be allowed to be represented by agents, in college and, for some, as high school prospects. For instance, student-athletes can make up to five official visits during their junior year of high school and another five visits during their senior year.

Among the most significant changes, stemming from the April recommendations made by the Condoleezza Rice-led commission, are the ability for "elite" high school recruits and college basketball players to be represented by agents, and for players to enter the NBA draft and then return to school, if they go undrafted. This new rule aims to help highly touted high school players "make informed decisions about going pro".

Missing in the NCAA's package of rule changes is anything to do with pay for players, a wish from many in the college sports community and the inspiration for a multitude of opinion pieces over the years. "Also, schools are required to cooperate fully during NCAA investigations and take appropriate corrective action".

University of Kentucky coach John Calipari, talking about the NCAA rules changes on SportsCenter, said "None of this goes into effect until the NBA and the Players Association come up with something, and I'm hearing it won't be until 2022 so we're probably wasting our breath dealing with the ins and outs of this".

The changes also allow the NCAA to accept during investigations outside information that has been "established by another administrative body or a commission authorized by a school".

Related news: