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NCAA Considers Ban on Text Messages to Recruits

WSJ Online has a story about the NCAA’s consideration of a ban against text messaging to recruits.  The NCAA website confirms that the Division I Board of Directors is expected to take action on this proposal today.

I’m not sure what I think of this.  The NCAA already has regulations that limit contacting of recruits by coaches, including restrictions on the number and timing of telephone calls.  There’s apparently no present regulation of text messaging, so coaches use it to circumvent other rules against contacting athletes.  I can only imagine how busy the cell phone of a big time basketball or football player gets.  The father of an athlete in a small, non-revenue sport once recounted to me that his son gets text messages every day.  The WSJ Online story mentions one coach who gets and sends 1,000-1,500 text messages a month.
With all that in mind, the text messaging ban appears to appropriately close a loophole in rules designed to give athletes some space.  A high schooler who’s unsure about where he or she wants to attend college may feel obligated to answer every text message from every coach.  That having been said, banning an entire form of communication comes across as a bit extreme, but perhaps there’s no other way to control the problem without inviting abuse.