NCAA extends recruiting dead period through 2020
The NCAA announced another extension to the dead period Wednesday
The NCAA announced Wednesday evening that it has once again extended the recruiting dead period. However, unlike the previous extensions, which have always been on a monthly basis, this time the Division I Council announced that it'll last for the rest of the 2020 calendar year.
"The Division I Council extended the recruiting dead period through January 1," the NCAA announced on Twitter. "The Council has been reviewing the dead period on a regular basis since April. A dead period precludes all in-person recruiting. Phone calls and correspondence can continue to occur."
It's no coincidence that this extension coincides with the expected end of the 2020 football season. Schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision are already facing a multitude of obstacles in competing this year's season. It's unfortunate for players in the Class of 2021, but sources have told Blue White Illustrated that many coaches across the country aren't in favor of adding another potential obstacle in hosting recruits from across the country.
During a dead period, coaches are allowed to still speak with prospective student-athletes electronically - including text messages, over the phone, email and video conference - but no on- or off-campus contact is allowed. That includes unofficial and official visits to campus. Coaches are also not allowed to perform in-person evaluations, meaning they won't be able to travel to high school games this season. All evaluations will have to be based off film.
Earlier this year, the NCAA also announced that coaches were temporarily allowed unlimited phone and video calls with prospects in the 2021 class. Under the normal dead period rules, coaches were limited in how many times they could contact a prospect in a given week.
From the outside looking in, this should have a big impact on many of Penn State's top remaining 2021 prospects. Offensive lineman Diego Pounds has never been able to visit Penn State. He and his family were considering a tour on their own back in the summer, but they ultimately weren't able to make the trip to State College that weekend. Since then, his in-state school, North Carolina, has also extended a scholarship offer. Last month, I placed a FutureCast for Pounds, and I still believe the Lions have a real chance, but the Tar Heels have certainly made this closer than Penn State would prefer.
Another player that could be interesting to watch is Pittsburgh safety Derrick Davis. During an interview with his father later month, he said that he and his son wanted to visit LSU at some point. A true visit with Ed Orgeron and his staff now looks unlikely, as Davis is planning to enroll early. Sources have also told Blue White Illustrated that he's considering a commitment date around the beginning of November, although that's yet to be officially announced by the family.
One other prospect who comes to mind is defensive end Davon Townley of Minneapolis. Last year, Townley played football for the first time and had a breakout season that went under the radar for months. Because he considered himself more of a basketball recruit, Townley didn’t release his football film until after basketball season in March, just as pandemic-related restrictions were being put in place across the country. He’s now up to 15 football scholarship offers and likely won't be able to take a true visit with any of his top schools.