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News Nuggets, 07.22.04

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Compiled from staff reports and electronic dispatches

NCAA panel endorses major recruiting reforms


No Nuggets 05.20.04 - 05.21.04 because of technical problems.
07.19.04: Former ECU assistant VanDerHeyden retires from UAB staff ... Bearcats land junior college punter ... More...
07.18.04: ECU touts corporate football packages ... SLU marketing themes earn national awards ... More...
07.17.04: Laurinburg Institute star inks with DePaul ... Long Beach State ace captures Golden Spikes ... More...
07.16.04: BCS to roll out new title scheme ... Catamounts AD rejoins old boss Todd Turner ... ECU's Walker Center awarded outreach grant ... More...
07.15.04: BCS to roll out new title scheme ... Catamounts AD rejoins old boss Todd Turner ... ECU's Walker Center awarded outreach grant ... More...
07.14.04: Diamond success spurs bigger bucks for Mazey ... Five C-USA quarterbacks on O'Brien watch list ... More...
07.13.04: UAB, USF swap Saturday date for Wednesday TV game ... Divided school ditches Indian nicknames ... More...
07.12.04: School 'volunteers' to get out of retail business ... Former UCF defensive boss joins Tulane staff ... More...
07.11.04: Former Marquette star Wade named to U.S. Olympic team ... Houston, Charlotte cop NCAA Regionals in 2008 ... More...
07.10.04: ECU sprint guru tutoring Team USA ... Texas coach contrite over snubbing CWS awards ... More...
07.09.04: Ole Miss, ECU top Memphis road game prices ... Brand throws weight behind drastic changes ... More...
07.08.04: Coaches propose radical recruiting, eligibility changes ... Tulsa set for TV hoops clash with Sooners ... More...
07.07.04: Football tickets becoming hot commodity at Marshall ... Student's message tugged at coach's heart ... Trouble escalates for VPI QB with famous last name ... .. More...

Under new rules designed to take the "celebrity" out of the recruiting race, colleges will no longer be able to fly recruits on private jets, house them in resort hotels or feed them extravagant meals.

The NCAA Management Council concluded a two-day meeting in Baltimore this week and will forward the recommendations to the organization's board of directors for emergency approval Aug. 5.

The council also agreed to advance a package of proposals from the National Association of Basketball Coaches that focus on recruiting, retaining and graduating Division I basketball players.

The package includes granting players five years of eligibility, allowing coaches to talk with players outside the traditional player-coach environment and hold tryouts to evaluate prospects.

The package will be examined by member schools, with an initial vote expected in January 2005 and a final vote in April.

The recruiting recommendations call for colleges and universities to use commercial airlines and coach airfares to fly athletes to campus, lodge them in "standard" accommodations and serve them reasonable meals.

"It's intended to do away with the celebrity, the sense of entitlement, for a prospect," said David Berst, NCAA vice president and chair of the recruiting task force.

The new rules, which would be in place for the upcoming academic year, also ban schools from giving recruits rides in vehicles not used for other prospective students. Schools would also be prevented from handing out personalized jerseys or using audio/video scoreboard presentations featuring the player.

"This measure is intended to prohibit the use of specialized vehicles, such as those with special decor or modified with televisions, which could create a sense of entitlement for prospective student-athletes," the report said.

NCAA president Myles Brand created the recruiting task force in February after several high-profile scandals emerged, including at Colorado and Miami.

The new rules will also require each school to adopt a written policy outlining the guidelines for official visits prohibiting the use of alcohol, drugs, sex and gambling in recruiting. The presidents or chancellors must approve the policies and submit them to their respective conference officials by Dec. 1.

Two additional recommendations, to be considered in April 2005, would allow schools to pay for one parent or guardian to accompany a recruit on an official visit and reduce the number official visits from five to four.

While the recruiting measures are on the fast track to NCAA approval, there is much work to be done on the NABC package.

With respect to the proposal allowing tryouts, Berst said it fits into the larger goal of the project — to improve the chances of a recruit meshing with a school in hopes of reducing the number of transfers and early entries to the NBA draft.

But, he said, it's nowhere near close to being adopted. "That's one of a group of proposals tied together that they'll have to defend, explain and work with the governance entities," Berst said. "It's going to be a long process."

Clemens honor gives Weaver sweep of baseball awards

HOUSTON — Long Beach State righthander Jered Weaver received the inaugural Roger Clemens award Thursday as the top pitcher in college baseball.

The 6-foot-7, 205-pound Weaver was 15-1 with a 1.62 ERA and 213 strikeouts with just 21 walks in 144 innings last season. He was chosen by the Anaheim Angels as the 12th overall pick in the June draft.

Weaver once met Clemens when the six-time Cy Young Award winner was pitching for the New York Yankees and Weaver's brother Jeff also played for New York.

"That was the greatest moment of my life," Jered Weaver said. "Now this moment is even greater. It's amazing. I never thought something like this would happen."

Weaver won the Clemens Award over other finalists J.P. Howell of Texas and Wade Townsend of Rice. Weaver swept the college baseball awards by also winning the Dick Howser, Golden Spike and Baseball America Player of the Year awards.

Clemens, who pitches for the Houston Astros, lauded all the finalists.

"All of these guys had great years," Clemens said. "Obviously, I knew Jeff and he told me about his younger brother before. I've had the opportunity to talk with J.P. and Wade as well. They all have a lot of character, will and desire."

Weaver was chosen for the Clemens Award by a national vote of Division I baseball coaches, selected national baseball media and the 16 past winners of the Rotary R.E. "Bob" Smith Award, college baseball's Player of the Year award which was retired in 2003 to make way for the Clemens Award.

The announcement was made at the Roger Clemens Award dinner sponsored by the Greater Houston Baseball Association.

News Nuggets are compiled periodically from staff, ECU, Conference USA and its member schools, and from Associated Press and other reports. Copyright 2004 and other publishers. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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