HUNTINGTON — On Monday morning, the NCAA Division I Council Coordination Committee made a move that could signal change ahead of the next NCAA Board of Governors meeting.
The Coordination Committee granted a blanket waiver that reduces the current required minimum number of contests for fall sports other than football by 50 percent.
This waiver applies to men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, field hockey, water polo and women’s volleyball.
The change comes after Friday’s NCAA Board of Governors meeting in which NCAA President Mark Emmert stated, “It is clear that the format of our championships will have to change if they are to be conducted in a safe and fair manner.”
The recommendation came from the Division I Competition Oversight Committee, which also approved other measures in regards to postseason selection requirements for NCAA fall championships.
Those changes include suspending the criteria that teams have to have at least a .500 record to be considered for at-large selections into a championship field while allowing conferences leeway in terms of determining automatic qualifiers for the tournament.
Much of those changes came about as various conferences are determining how to implement a season in the safest way possible. Some conferences have already announced a conference-only slate while others are waiting for word from the NCAA’s Board of Governors on the status of fall championships — a decision which could come about on Aug. 4.
With some conferences eliminating non-conference competition, the change allows teams who continue with competition from not stockpiling games at season’s end, which pose health risks to the athletes involved.
The committee also discussed use of the RPI and NET rankings for this year because those numbers could become skewed due to playing only league games.
Oversight committee members stated that sport committees will need to rely on information provided by conferences this fall as a more accurate model for at-large selections.