The landscape of college football is changing rapidly.
The advent of NIL (Name, Image and Likeness) deals has now brought player empowerment to the forefront of the sport and as a result coaching, recruitment and the transfer portal have all undergone a major overhaul.
The transfer portal has probably experienced the biggest shift. Players hop from program to program and the removal of a previous rule that required players to sit out a year after a transfer has increased it significantly. Nebraska, USC, South Carolina, Oklahoma — all have transfer QBs at the top of their offense, and that’s just the surface of teams with redesigned rosters.
But not everyone supports college football’s transformation.
“This generation of kids has seen LeBron [James] brings his talents to Miami,” Oregon offensive coordinator Kenny Dillingham said via Sports Illustrated. “They want to be on a ‘super team’.”
Blaming James for the influx of “superteams” in another sport might seem like a stretch, and in the eyes of “Undisputed” host Skip Bayless it’s completely off the mark – especially when NIL is implicated.
“NIL is the biggest thing that can happen to college football, or college in general,” Bayless said Wednesday. “Because the coaches and the administration took advantage of these kids for years. Especially in the violent game of pro football because you’re going to die for the cause… and break your knees and you can’t play football professionally trying to win games for a college that won’t pay you anything more than room, board and tuition. … I had no problem with LeBron leaving Cleveland.
Division II Hall of Famer inductee Shannon Sharpe sided with his co-host on this issue.
“These guys might not make it in [the pros]”, he said. “But they might have an opportunity to have a few hundred thousand dollars to skip them … and hold them back until they can go out into the real world.”
“I have no problem with that [players transferring], because trainers do it the longest. Brian Kelly did it twice: remember he left Cincinnati just before the bowl game, and Florida took the brakes off them in the bowl game. Then he did it again, went to LSU, and left Notre Dame on dry land!”
Fox Sports college football analyst Joel Klatt also disagreed with Dillingham.
LeBron to Miami created a culture shift in collegiate super teams
Joel Klatt speaks with Colin Cowherd about Oregon OC’s Kenny Dillingham’s comments blaming “superteams” for LeBron James’ move to Miami.
“I think that’s a stretch,” he said in reference to the comment. “I don’t think we can sit here and blame LeBron if this is more of a cultural shift. … In our culture, we navigate to where we feel most comfortable. … We get into new cycles that only benefit our new way of thinking. It’s our entire culture.
“And the transfer portal, where should a child go? Where is it most difficult? It doesn’t [make sense]. Becoming rigid in our own silos doesn’t make the culture any better.”
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