NCAA Extends In-Person Recruiting Ban Through May 31 Because of Coronavirus

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistApril 1, 2020

Official March Madness 2020 tournament basketballs are seen in a store room at the CHI Health Center Arena, in Omaha, Neb., Monday, March 16, 2020. Omaha was to host a first and second round in the NCAA college basketball Division I tournament, which was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)
Nati Harnik/Associated Press

The NCAA announced Wednesday that it has extended its dead period of recruiting through May 31 amid the COVID-19 pandemic: 

Brandon Huffman of 247Sports noted that "the dead period doesn't mean coaches can't communicate with recruits" or "recruits can't communicate with coaches. They just can't visit campuses and vice versa." 

The news comes two days after the organization announced it would grant spring student-athletes an additional year of eligibility after all spring sports and championships were canceled on March 12. Those spring sports include baseball, softball, tennis, golf, outdoor track and field, lacrosse, rowing, men's volleyball, beach volleyball and women's water polo. 

Student-athletes in winter sports, who completed a majority of their seasons but had their championships canceled, were not granted an extra year of eligibility, however. 

Certain sports like baseball also saw the NCAA grant larger rosters for next season because of those changes. The question for those programs will be how to balance the players unexpectedly still available next season with the incoming players on scholarships. 

As for recruiting in general, Evan Daniels of 247Sports further broke down how many college coaches, recruits and transfers will approach this unprecedented period:

\The NCAA, like the rest of the sporting world, has had to make major adjustments during the coronavirus pandemic, including canceling the men's and women's basketball tournaments and all other remaining winter sports championships. There also remains the possibility that the start of the fall sports, including football, could be impacted by COVID-19, depending on how long the U.S. government and CDC keep social distancing recommendations in place. 

ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit said he would be "shocked" if there was a college football season in the fall.

"I'll be so surprised if that happens," he said on ESPN Radio last week (h/t TMZ Sports). "Just because from what I understand, people that I listen to, you're 12 to 18 months from a [coronavirus] vaccine. I don't know how you let these guys go into locker rooms and let stadiums be filled up and how you can play ball. I just don't know how you can do it with the optics of it."

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