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Richt Says Oversigning Is An Integrity Issue

As well as stating that he would be in favor of dumping kickoffs from the game, Georgia’s Mark Richt once again tackled the issue of oversigning while meeting with the press yesterday.

Take it away, Marc Weiszer of The Athens Banner-Herald who starts with a quote from Richt:

“Oversigning.  I’ll just say this.  You guys can figure it out.  85 on scholarship, ok?  If 15 guys leave, how many do you have room for?”

Richt said it wasn’t a trick question.

“Fifteen,” one reporter said.

“Thank you for being brave enough to answer that question,” Richt said.  “How many are you allowed to sign?”

“Twenty-five,” he was told.

“Is 25 more than 15?,” Richt said.  “I don’t know if you catch my drift of what I’m trying to say. …All I’m saying is you can still oversign with 25.  If you only have 15 and you sign 25, you still sign more than you got.  The questions is everybody’s integrity.  That’s the question.  Are we all going to do things in the right way?  I think everybody’s trying to do that.  It’s not an easy thing to manage.  It really is not.”

Richt also said that if a school signs only to the 85-man limit, that number could be down to 79 by the time August begins, just udue to normal attrition.

“It’s not as simple as everybody wants to make it.”

No, it isn’t.  But it is possible to create a uniform standard for each conference and program in the country.  The SEC now has a 25 man “soft” cap that will still allow for backcounting on top of those 25 yearly signees.

The Big Ten allows its schools to sign just three more players than the slots it has available.  To use Richt’s 15-man example, a Big Ten school could sign 18, not 25.

Eventually, the NCAA will likely go to a 25-man policy to match the SEC’s recently passed plan.  After all, they followed the league’s lead when they went to a 28-man cap.  But that won’t stop Big Ten folks from saying they are still showing more integrity than their neighbors to the East, West, and South.

And like it or not, they’re right.

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