Jay Jacobs watched the proceedings during football signing dayin February
By Charles Goldberg
Jay Jacobs wants to make sure everyone will be on a level playing field in college athletics, and that's why the Southeastern Conference is considering proposals to limit recruiting satellite football camps and making sure the cost of attendance supplementsto athletes reflect the true cost of every student.
Auburn's Director of Athletics, the chairman of the league's ADs, will be on hand as the Southeastern Conference begins its annual spring meeting in Destin on Tuesday with nine proposals on the agenda, ranging from protecting the SEC's turf, to increasing travel squads for some sports, to increasing compensation for NCAA basketball travel, to limiting artificial noisemakers in all sports.
The league will also begin to reap the benefits of the SEC Network, with an announcement Friday that will include payments of millions to each school reflecting the last 10 months of revenue generated by the new venture.
The headlines, until then, will come from these proposals: Making the transfer rule for undergraduates the same as graduate students, a rule Auburn is in favor of; sending a proposal to the NCAA to limit football satellite camps, in which Auburn is definitely in favor of; and making sure the cost of attendance supplements to athletes cannot be manipulated, a proposal Auburn also supports.
These spring meetings will be the last for commissioner Mike Slive, who is retiring; and a chance for the coaches from football and men and women's basketball to discuss issues for their sports.
Jacobs said the satellite camps, in the news because Michigan held one in Alabama, should be restricted by the NCAA. The SEC already limits the scope of satellite camps.
"We're not going to be at a competitive disadvantage," Jacobs said. "We're going to do what's best for this league first, and what has been best for this league is not to get into the business of leaving our campus.
"The SEC leads the nation in Top 10 recruiting classes, and we don't need satellite camps to enhance our recruiting."
Auburn proposed one of the rules on the cost of attendance legislation.
"The legislation is to make sure nobody has the ability to change their cost of attendance drastically," Jacobs said. "At Auburn, athletics doesn't have anything to do with that. That comes from the financial aid office. It's a good step to make sure that there are some checks and balances in place and some transparency because if the numbers do change, we can explain it.
"Each institution has a different way to calculate that number. It would serve the conference well to know when numbers change and why."
Jacobs said schools are unlikely to change the cost of attendance for all students in order to forward more money to athletes because they represent "such a small percentage of the student body."
Auburn's compensation to athletes will be among the tops in the SEC at approximately $6,500, counting summer school.
Jacobs also said the league should have the sametransfer rule for graduates who have a year of eligibility remaining as it does for undergraduates. Graduate students presently have to meet a higher standard to enroll.
The league will likely approve a rule that prohibits athletes from transferringfromone SEC school to another if they were suspended for serious misconduct, including assault, domestic violence and physical violence.
The proposal on artificial noisemakers would not affect Mississippi State fans from bringing cowbells to their football games.
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine