Feb 6, 2013; Auburn, CA, USA; Eddie Vanderdoes shown with his mother Behia on national signing day at Placer High School. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Commentary: Vanderdoes Cleared To Play

Brian Kelly issued a statement commenting on the NCAA’s decision to allow Eddie Vanderdoes to play this season today:

“While I disagree with yesterday’s decision by the NCAA National Letter of Intent Appeals Committee to reverse its original ruling and grant Eddie Vanderdoes a complete release from his NLI, I understand and respect the entire appeal process. However, this result does not change my opinion concerning the importance of protecting the integrity of the NLI program, nor will it change our approach to the process going forward.”

The issue seems to have come down to an institution vs. player argument. The institutions, such as Notre Dame, want to protect the the process that they have created. Players want to be able to choose whatever school they wish to attend. It is easy to paint Brian Kelly and Notre Dame as the cruel, spited group that just wanted to punish Vanderdoes. But, Kelly has not had a problem with allowing high profile recruits leave South Bend as Inside the Irish’s Keith Arnold pointed out.
So, did the NCAA make the correct decision here? Or in other words, should the systems be adjusted in some way to allow Vanderdoes to change his mind at the 11th hour? No one was forcing Vanderdoes to make his announcement on February 6th. It is a common misconception that players must sign on National Signing Day. They may sign after if they wish.
Recruits have more than enough information on the school they select as well. They get to visit up to five school on the schools’ dime. If a player cannot make a decision with all the information, no time will help them. It is important to remember that Vanderdoes is an exception and not the rule. There were 3 appeals this cycle and about 2500 signees. That is an extremely small percentage.

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