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30 BCS Conference Schools Opposed Multi-Year Scholarships

One of the NCAA's recent proposals was allowing schools to offer multi-year athletic scholarships. Until that went into effect, all athletic scholarships were merely renewable one-year contracts.

Last week the measure barely got past the override voting procedure, with 205 schools voting to override. It would have taken 207 votes in support of an override, given the number that participated in the vote, in order to table the plan for now. The Chronicle of Higher Education obtained an NCAA document detailing which schools opposed it. CBS Sports went through the list and found the 30 BCS conference schools that voted nay on the matter.

The entire Big 12 as a conference voted to override, as did each individual member institution (that counts TCU and West Virginia). It was the only conference to vote that way. That means the SEC voted in support of multi-year scholarships at the conference level, though Alabama, LSU, Tennessee, and Texas A&M all voted to override. All of the BCS AQ conferences had at least four current/future members vote to override except the Big Ten, which only had Wisconsin vote against multi-year scholarships.

Two SEC schools, Auburn and Florida, have said publicly that they awarded five- and four-year scholarships, respectively, back on this year's National Signing Day. Those would have been good for the whole term whether or not the measure was overridden. Also, there is nothing out there that will force schools to award multi-year scholarships except for plain old market forces. If a school only wants to award one-year scholarships, it can do that.

Nick Saban, whose school voted to override, opposed them saying he remembered when past multi-year scholarship deals resulted in lawsuits when players' scholarships were rescinded for disciplinary reasons. Steve Spurrier, whose school voted not to override, called multi-year scholarships "terrible". He also noted in typical Spurrier fashion that, "Luckily, coaches have four- or five-year contracts. They get paid off if they get canned."

This is the second big override vote of the past few months. The NCAA's proposed $2000 stipend for athletes on full athletic scholarship faced and was shelved by an override vote in December.