Thursday, June 20, 2024

Three-Point Stance: Ohio 7-on-7, New NIL Proposal, Dierre Hill Jr.

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Rivals national recruiting analyst Greg Smith has thoughts on Ohio’s 7-on-7 reversal, the NCAA’s new NIL proposal and the recruitment of a Midwest four-star RB.

MORE SMITH: FutureCast for a trio of Midwest stars

OHIO FINALLY GETS IT RIGHT

It’s about time for Ohio 7-on-7.

There’s a big change brewing in the Ohio high school football landscape. It’s now expected that the state will reverse its ban on its high school football players participating in 7-on-7 tournaments in the offseason.

It was an odd rule in the first place that really didn’t help athletes in Ohio. Players from cold weather states already fight a lot of perception issues when being compared to their peers in the Southeast and out West. So to take away opportunities for them to get exposure doesn’t make a lot of sense.

I’ve talked to several athletes over the years about playing 7-on-7. They are consistent about it being a great way to meet new people, challenge themselves outside of their own comfort zone and visit places they wouldn’t have been able to before.

Good for four-star defensive back Trey McNutt for getting the ball rolling on this by bringing the spotlight to the issue. Several players are already lining up teams to play with in big-time upcoming tournaments.

You can bet that increased exposure will lead to increased scholarship offers soon.

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NIL PROPOSAL

There was a report from Yahoo Sports’ Ross Dellenger that colleges are getting closer to having a bigger hand in Name, Image and Likeness for their athletes. It’s just the start of the news cycle on this but it certainly has my attention.

The NCAA’s NIL working group has introduced a proposal that permits schools to provide “assistance and services” to its athletes in pursuit of NIL opportunities, including identifying opportunities for them as well as even facilitating deals with third parties.

The proposal is on a parallel track and interconnected with the NIL “protections” legislation that the NCAA adopted in January. That legislation creates a voluntary registration process for NIL professional service providers such as agents and advisors; a disclosure database of athlete NIL deals of $600 or more; and standardized NIL contracts as well as a comprehensive educational plan.

There are two things within this set of proposals that could spur major change within the NIL space.

First, the overall idea that NIL would become more of an “in-house” operation run at least in part by schools. That is the way it always should have been. The current setup allowed for many collectives and agents to make money grabs in the name of helping athletes. It makes so much more sense to have this all be in-house and cut out a lot of extra shady people.

Second, the disclosure database could potentially clean up a lot of issues that we currently see. Especially in football, basketball and volleyball transfers. If it’s public what players are getting over $600 then it’s less likely for a school to lie to sway a kid to get into the portal. It keeps everyone honest.

The NIL space is a mess right now as things stand. Anything that starts to move us in a better direction is welcomed. Two things are true at once on this whole topic. Players deserved their piece of the pie in the multi-billion dollar machine. And the NCAA messed it all up from the beginning leading us to a broken system.

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DIERRE HILL HEATING UP

Dierre Hill Jr.

Dierre Hill Jr. (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

Every year the Midwest produces good running backs and one of the best in the region this cycle is Illinois four-star Dierre Hill Jr.

Hill was the Gatorade Player of the Year last season in Illinois. He rushed for 1,788 yards and 23 touchdowns while averaging 13.6 yards per carry. It’s easy to see why Hill came into April with close to 20 scholarship offers. He’s picked up offers from Ole Miss and Ohio State in the last couple days.

Hill tells me that he does want to visit Ole Miss soon. The connection with Ohio State is stronger already than you might think, as he has a great relationship with new running backs coach Carlos Locklyn. The Ducks were one of the leaders for Hill and Locklyn was a big part of that.

Locklyn is looking to put his stamp on the Ohio State running back room. Look for things to pick up quickly between the Buckeyes and Hill, who may prefer staying in the region to play his college ball.

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