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If there is a spring football season for Notre Dame, should early enrollees play?

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Do we even know all of the variables yet?

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From everything that I can gather, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and a large portion of the college football world plan on playing this fall. Whether that’s a good idea or not is another matter. Seeing a full 2020 season actually played this fall is also another matter.

I want to set aside those things for just a moment and talk about a scenario that has been brought up a fair amount of times over the past few months... moving the season to the spring. And I want to get even more specific than that — if the season is moved to the spring, should early enrollees be allowed to play?

Personally, I haven’t developed a concrete opinion on the matter. The difficulty with this topic is that we have no idea and certainly no guidance from the NCAA about any special provisions should the season be moved.

Here are some things to think about:

  • Player Safety. Even if the NCAA moves the season, some early enrollees may have played their high school season. Would their bodies have enough rest in between high school season and college season? And say they too lost their season like Tyler Buchner — is the enormous gap too much for them to handle the vigors of college football right away?
  • Numbers. This is probably the most discussed part of the scenario. What about the scholarship numbers? Say a team doesn’t have a normal amount of attrition by March (for whatever reason), would the NCAA allow a bump in scholarship numbers for the spring season?
  • Academics. Enrolling early and going through normal spring football is one thing — but an actual season with travel is another monster entirely. Is a kid that should still be in high school prepared to handle that kind of stress with the academic workload? Would “burning out” early be a thing?

Again, I don’t know what the right answer is right now — and it may never even need an answer. Still... I don’t think a spring football season is an impossibility, and sooner or later we may have to actually answer this question for real.

Poll

Should early enrollees be able to play if there is a spring football season?

This poll is closed

  • 24%
    Yes
    (69 votes)
  • 44%
    No
    (127 votes)
  • 30%
    Man, I don’t even know right now
    (87 votes)
283 votes total Vote Now