Pac-12 sets forth plan for sweeping reform of men's basketball

Pac-12 sets forth plan for sweeping reform of men's basketball”

After roughly five months of discussion and research, the Pac-12 task force created in response to the FBI investigation into corruption in college basketball has finalized several recommendations for change and submitted them to the NCAA Commission on College Basketball.

Two Pac-12 schools, Arizona and USC, also were implicated, and an assistant coach from each school was dismissed.

"If the National Basketball Association isn't willing to make changes like this to the eligibly rules, I think college will have to re-evaluate some other things", Scott said.

A Pac-12 taskforce on reforming college basketball is recommending an end to the NBA's one-and-done rule, allowing players to return to school even after they are drafted, and that the NCAA facilitate access to agents for high school players. In the Pac-12's proposal, prospects who are would retain the option to head to college, but should they choose the college route would not be eligible to be drafted again until after their third season on campus - like baseball and football.

The Pac-12 said it believes an end to the "one-and-done" rule "will reduce the incentives to engage in behavior that violates NCAA rules".

"It's our sense that that would be an important step in terms of having more clarity of goal and mission so that those young men that really (are) exclusively focused on wanting to get paid to play basketball, they can go do that and they have more better options quicker without having to come through the collegiate system", Scott said last week at the Pac-12 men's basketball tournament in Las Vegas. "We're very much approaching it from the perspective of we think there's a lot of focus on this right now, cries for action". There are similar rules already in place in both baseball and hockey.

Another recommendation was to create an independent office to conduct NCAA investigations and determine major violations.

The task force recommended that the recruiting process move away from tournaments run by shoe or apparel companies and other promoters to regional "combine" events co-sponsored by the NCAA.

Scott pointed to the remarks of high-profile players like LeBron James, who argued that the N.B.A. had a mission to clean up the sport of basketball and suggested it would be in the N.B.A.'s best interest to help college basketball put its house in order. The report also advocated full transparency of apparel deals with coaches and universities.

"So certainly on behalf of the Pac-12, our objective with this task force is to be an important part, an important leader in finding some of those solutions, working with other conferences and the NCAA's task force and many others".

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