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The Triple Option: Let’s Talk About Anything Except Schedules

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Four stories that have little, if nothing, to do with canceled seasons.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 28 CFP Semifinal at the Fiesta Bowl - Clemson v Ohio State Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

There’s going to be one thousand articles written about scheduling changes. Let’s talk about something different.

Currently, all NCAA sports except for football, basketball, baseball and hockey allow student-athletes to transfer schools once without having to sit out of competition for a year.

The NCAA Division 1 Council is working on developing a “comprehensive legislative package” that would make eligibility rules uniform.

As The Athletic’s Max Olson notes, the football oversight committee discussed “transfer windows” Thursday in anticipation of one-time transfer exceptions becoming the norm.

Proposals are due by Nov. 1, so there’s time to fine tune this. But one-time exceptions without waivers appear to be becoming the norm, a huge arrow in a student-athlete’s quiver.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFF COMMITTEE CRITERIA UNCHANGED

The College Football Playoff has always tried to pick the four best teams. It’s been too often misunderstood, but criteria such as conference championships, strength of schedule and even head-to-head only come into play if the committee cannot decide between two equally deserving teams.

If we have a season — and that’s looking more and more faint — then the Playoff Committee doesn’t have to adjust its criteria to accommodate some conferences playing only each other and some conferences allowing their members to play outside teams. They are still going to look for the best four teams.

This will get a tad more complicated, however, if some teams play differing amounts of games (between nine and 12). But we’ll cross that bridge if we come to it.

MUSICAL INTERLUDE

This song reminds me of some of the folk I enjoy from the 1970s, except it’s about how surprisingly hurtful a picture from a phone can be.

NIELE IVEY SPEAKS TO NPR

“Coach Ivey’s first year? Well, she can’t even get on the court because of a pandemic. She’s been hosting team meetings on Zoom. And, on one, she focused on race.”

“‘You know, I feel like we’re going through two pandemics. The civil unrest that happened abruptly after the murder of George Floyd — I just felt like it was an opportunity to talk about race, to have those uncomfortable conversations. I knew that my team was dealing with it all in different ways. They were expressing it online; they were emotional. I just wanted that Zoom call, you know, just to be an opportunity for them to express how they felt. It was a good resource for them to ask questions, to engage together and, again, to have that uncomfortable dialogue that was necessary.’”

Ivey also discussed how Floyd’s murder affected her as the mother of an 18-year-old boy, and how she is the “visual representation of what’s possible” as the first Black head coach at the university.

SUPPORTING FOREIGN STUDENTS

While Notre Dame would not be “immediately affected” by Homeland Security’s “proposed policy of deporting foreign students unable to find in-person alternatives when universities implement online instruction only,” the university will file a legal brief supporting Harvard and MIT’s motion to prevent ICE from taking action.

Notre Dame has approximately 1,400 international students. About 100 of them were stranded during the pandemic because of air travel restrictions “and other impediments.” The university accommodated all of them, university President Fr. John Jenkins said in a Wednesday letter to Homeland Security.

“We embrace our visitors. We don’t chase them away. No harm and much good would result if Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) took a similar approach,” wrote Jenkins. “After all, they were already vetted before their entry into the United States.”