Arkansas is petitioning the NCAA on behalf of former Michigan quarterback Ryan Mallett to waive the requirement that players transferring have to sit out one year before they are eligible to play. They are arguing "extenuating circumstances." The extenuating circumstance in this case is that Michigan got a new coach that runs an offense he feels he is not suited for. If this waiver is granted, and Mallett is allowed to play this year, it could open the floodgates and force the NCAA to review each and every transfer for "extenuating circumstances." If "the new coach runs an offense I don't like" is an extenuating circumstance, then I can see TONS of players try this type of tactic to get the NCAA to waive their one-year waiting period:
- New running back coach wants me to run faster. I want to transfer.
- New secondary coach insists that I cover faster players. I object to this.
- Old coach said I would start this year. New coach says I have to earn it. I want out.
- I thought I was going to play linebacker, but they want to move me to defensive end. No way.
I suspect the "extenuating circumstances" wording, when written into the rules by the NCAA, was probably meant for family hardships, unexpected deaths, etc. (QB's mother died, he needs to be closer to home to help his family deal with it; brother has leukemia, needs bone marrow).
If they grant this waiver it would be a travesty. Unless they want to change the rules, which is fine by me. But if they change the rule to "if a coach leaves, you can transfer and play immediately," then coaches would be stabbing each other in the back and circling like vultures whenever a fellow coach is fired. It would be like a college version of free agency. For example, it was pretty well known that 2007 was going to be Lloyd's last year. Would it have been fair if 40 guys decided they were going to transfer out to play immediately next year at ND, or Purdue, or Cincinnati? Michigan's squad would have been decimated.
I've got nothing against Ryan Mallett. I hope he has success at Arkansas. But if he is allowed to play this year, the NCAA becomes a bigger joke than it already is.