The NCAA’s ability to trip over its own feet is a thing of legend.
The NCAA released a ridiculous set of new agent guidelines last month, targeted at agents who wanted to represent players with college eligibility left (part of the previous year’s rule changes, those players can talk to agents and still return to college now). The new rules included that qualified agents needed to have a college degree — the “Rich Paul rule.” After a backlash from Paul and others, the NCAA removed that requirement.
However, the NCAA’s problems with agents are not over.
One of the other requirements is that agents had to pass a written test given by the NCAA. Multiple major agencies are not going to play by the NCAA’s rules and take the test, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.
If a lot of firms are not going to play ball with the NCAA, it’s another setback.
The National Basketball Players Association — the player’s union — already certifies agents. That threshold was not good enough for the NCAA, which has to show its member organizations it’s earning its keep somehow, so it came up with a test and other hurdles for agents to clear. Agents have plenty on their plate — do you have any idea the kind of babysitting it takes to be an agent, the kind of players’ demands that have to be met? — without having to do the NCAA’s dance, too.
We’ll see how the NCAA responds to this, if their rules would hold up to a legal challenge, and where things go from here? But the agents’ reactions fit with the general tone of how people around the NBA feel about the NCAA as a whole.