Power conference commissioners propose more days off for student athletes

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Power conference commissioners propose more days off for student athletes

Daily Illini File Photo

Daily Illini File Photo

Daily Illini File Photo

By Daily Illini Staff Report

The major conference commissioners recognized an agreement that student-athletes require additional time away from their respective sports as a result of feedback from within respective universities. The agreement acknowledges a current state of extensive time commitment from athletic participants.

“We believe we have found the right balance between helping students participate in sports while also providing them with more down time,” the commissioners of the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, PAC-12 and SEC said in a joint statement.  

The proposal features four major changes, one of which is a required week free of athletic activities for athletes at the conclusion of their season.

“Different sports have different demands, and we think the concepts we’ve agreed to will help tens of thousands of students achieve more balance as they pursue their academic and athletic commitments.”

The proposal also includes an expanded number of off-days during the academic year – which has been labeled as Flex 21 – featuring an emphasis on a previous rule regarding time away from participation during the week. Schools previously agreed to allow one day away from athletic activities per week but were able to get around the rule by considering travel days related to competition as time off.

The last change is geared toward athlete recovery with a proposed required 8-hour block of free time anytime between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., opposed to the current restriction from midnight to 5 a.m. These changes would be met with an expanded definition of required athletic activities. Each conference is permitted to an expansion of the rules as they see fit. Formal proposals still need to be submitted for further consideration from the NCAA.