FAYETTEVILLE — The NCAA Division I Council has announced that it is waiving the initial counter scholarship limits for two years within Division I football.
Schools have been allowed to sign 25 in a class with an overall limit of 85 on scholarship at any one time. Schools couldn’t sign more than 25 even if they were still under the 85.
With so many athletes entering the transfer portal each year from all the schools the numbers were gradually getting lower and lower under the 85. Signing 25 and losing so many players to the transfer portal made it virtually impossible for many schools to get to 85.
To help with a school losing so many players to the transfer portal the council ruled in October a school could go seven over the 25 assuming they had lost that number of players. In other words, if a school had seven players transfer they could sign 32 players that year assuming they stayed at or under the 85 total. But that was just a one-year waiver.
Sam Pittman and his staff are at 84 as far as the 85 total. They are still trying to add an interior defensive lineman to the Class of 2022.
Another thing that has happened is schools are signing more and more athletes from the transfer portal and fewer high school athletes. The recruits from the transfer portal also counted against the yearly 25 number.
The new rule allowing football teams to sign up to 85 is more like basketball. The men’s basketball team is allowed 13 players on scholarship while the women have 15. But there was no yearly limit put on the coaches. For instance, Eric Musselman has added 11 new players, six from high school, to his team thus only two players remain from last year.
For the next two years Pittman and other football coaches will now have more flexibility on how they fill their recruiting class.