clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

South Florida Caught With its Hand in the Oversigning Cookie Jar

New, comments
South Florida is an institution ranked "tier 3" by U.S. News ↵& World Report. There it idles amongst such luminary I-A football ↵leaders as Oregon State and Mississippi State, schools that will admit ↵anything mountainous with a pulse as long as it has managed to scrawl an ↵"X" on a junior college diploma. Correction: USF is one of six teams in the 16-team Big East that is rated as "Tier 3" by U.S. News. As an ↵institution, the school believes Tampa Bay counts as "south" in ↵Florida's ↵geography. Bluntly, the place is not Harvard. It's not even Harfurd.  ↵

↵In football, South Florida is the kind of place where academic risks ↵go when higher-profile schools shy away. There's a reason its APR is ↵the country's worst. So why ↵is this happening to offensive line commitment Kamran Joyer? ↵

↵
↵⇥

↵⇥Wesley Chapel center Kamran Joyer, who signed with ↵⇥USF in February, has asked for and been granted a release from his ↵⇥scholarship with the Bulls after uncertainty as to whether he'd be ↵⇥accepted academically, his father Jack said Monday afternoon. ↵⇥

↵
↵

↵It's not because he's an academic risk in the eyes of the NCAA: he's ↵been given the go-ahead by the NCAA clearinghouse. He is fully ↵qualified. This is strange and unexplainable: ↵

↵
↵⇥USF's coaches had anticipated some attrition from signing day, when ↵⇥29 players signed with the Bulls, four over the NCAA limit for one ↵⇥class. Joyer is the sixth signee not expected to be in school this fall ↵⇥... Even without those six signees, USF is believed to be at the ↵⇥NCAA's overall limit of 85 scholarships, unless other returning ↵⇥players do not stay with the program as expected. ↵
↵

↵Ah. South Florida signed 29 players when it had 23 spots and is in ↵the process of deleting players it finds undesirable. Unfortunately for ↵the Bulls, too many of their many academic risks have come through this ↵year and someone has to be tossed overboard. ↵

↵

↵Joyer, a three-star recruit ↵without great offers, gets the heave-ho and is now adrift a mere two ↵months before classes start. All over the country, his classmates are in ↵summer school, preparing for the coming season athletically and ↵academically. Joyer is now trying to latch onto another school that ↵happens to have an available scholarship. ↵

↵

↵This is a clear case of a school oversigning rampantly without caring ↵what happens to the kids at the end of the class. Jim Leavitt can count, ↵even if many of his signees have trouble with that. The punishment that ↵will be levied by the NCAA: nothing. Since Joyer didn't make it to ↵campus it won't even ding their APR. ↵

↵

↵ESPN's weak ↵sauce response to this: ↵

↵
↵⇥As South Florida's situation shows, these things have a way of ↵⇥working themselves out. Schools often sign a lot of players, knowing ↵⇥full well that a handful or more won't qualify academically, which ↵⇥appears to be the case with the Bulls. ↵
↵

↵Here's where access turns you into a corporate drone: Brian Bennett, ↵the author of that sentence, says it "appears to be the case" ↵Joyer didn't qualify academically when the article specifically says he ↵did, and that this is an example of things "working themselves ↵out." Tell that to Joyer. Bennett follows this up with some stuff ↵about how people want to "reduce" oversigning without giving ↵Leavitt the full blast he deserves for this. The lack of reading ↵comprehension and spine in that post is truly epic. ↵

↵

↵Would the Big Ten-SEC policy even help here? It limits schools to 28 ↵signees, but the real issue here is that South Florida had only 23 ↵slots. So it doesn't sign one of the six guys it chucked overboard ... ↵great. That means there's a 17 percent smaller chance someone gets boned a ↵la Joyer. Woo? ↵

↵

↵The NCAA needs to step in here and make the letter of intent an ↵actual commitment on the part of the school. Anyone you sign who does ↵not end up on campus still counts as an occupied scholarship slot that ↵year, and you can't sign a letter of intent until you are academically ↵eligible. Otherwise you're going to get more instances like this when ↵unscrupulous coaches meet marginally innocent babes. ↵

↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.