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SEC Clarifies New Signing Cap Rule

Each time we write a post that references the SEC’s new soft 25-man signing cap, we receive a number of emails from people asking why we use the word “soft” in front the cap part.  We do that because, technically, SEC schools can still sign more than 25 players per season.

Under the first-year signing cap, SEC programs are still allowed to “back count” early enrollees to the previous year’s signing crop.  Nothing has changed on that front.  A school can bring in more than 25 in a class if there’s room in the previous class for back counting and if those players enroll early.

On a related note, SEC PR man Charles Bloom has informed Seth Emerson of The Macon Telegraph that one thing has changed:

“If a player signs, he counts without regard to whether or not he actually enrolls.  ‘Back counting’ is only permitted for mid-year enrolles who are able to be included as an initial counter for the academic year in which they enroll.  ‘Back counting’ is an artificial term for this discussion and not accurate as the question is about the signing limit.”

What you need to know:

* If a school signed 23 players last year, it could techically back count two early enrollees this year and still sign 25 more players… giving the school a 27-man class on paper.  Thus our use of the term “soft 25-man signing cap.”

* If a player signs with a school and fails to qualify academically or enroll for any other reason, tough noogies.  (Never wrote that before.)  Schools must count all players who sign, not just the ones who enroll.



If a team loses, say 5 juniors to the NFL are the allowed to sign more than the 25 the next year?


Would this have prevented the Elliot Porter situation at LSU a couple of years ago? By the way, 'Bama fans who keep using the Elliot Porter and Justin Miller LSU situations to justify the Justin Taylor thing ... LSU offered Porter the same deal that Saban offered Taylor: a greyshirt. And Taylor would have merely had to defer his enrollment until fall instead of enrolling early, so that wouldn't have even been a greyshirt. And I wish 'Bama fans would quit claiming that it is because Taylor was injured. Like Saban would risk losing a 5 star recruit with a relatively minor knee injury to LSU or Florida by offering a greyshirt. Also, Saban was fine with Taylor's knee injury until Tracy Yeldon - 5 star RB - committed. THAT was the point when Taylor's knee magically required him to sit at home for ELEVEN MONTHS waiting on a NONBINDING GREYSHIRT OFFER TO COME THROUGH instead of getting a binding letter of intent for a grant in aid TOMORROW. TOMORROW versus ELEVEN MONTHS for a kid who is a ward of the state and as a result had his high school coach appointed as his guardian.

And no, I am not bashing Saban or 'Bama. This may SHOCK you, but comments on a blog aren't going to cause any injury to Saban or the Alabama athletics program. Just countering the foolishness of 'Bama fans who pretend as if it is an honor to be greyshirted and stuffed on the shelf for 11 months when you have no means of paying for your college education - which, you know, is generally the case for WARDS OF THE STATE - or something.

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