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NCAA unveils updated details on proposed legislative autonomy

Mark Emmert and the NCAA announced another significant change in the college football structure. (LM Otero/AP) Mark Emmert and the NCAA announced another significant change in the college football structure. (LM Otero/AP)

Earlier this month the NCAA announced consideration for a degree of legislative autonomy for the five major conferences. This week the NCAA unveiled a more detailed proposal in that direction.

A proposed model of governance for the NCAA would give the five major FBS conferences -- the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC -- 37 percent of the vote from a 34-member group tentatively called "the Council." The group would be comprised of the 32 NCAA conferences and two student-athletes, with each group's votes weighted.

The suggested system would split the FBS into two factions, giving five conferences four votes and the other five two votes. The remaining 22 conferences and the two student-athletes proposed for the Council would each count once. Under this structure, no single group would have a majority.

The NCAA said members of the steering committee are expected to continue discussions of autonomy at spring conference meetings, but the committee want to ensure that any autonomy is "driven by the values and principles of student-athlete welfare and not competitive advantage." The NCAA hopes to present a potential model at its April 25 board meeting.

In other news, the NCAA also announced further plans to revamp the Division I Board of Directors. Under the new proposal, an athletics director, a student-athlete and a faculty athletics representative would be present as voting members. The Board was previously comprised entirely of university presidents.

“The steering committee believes the non-presidents on the board should be defined by their positions within different organizations,” said steering committee and board chair Nathan Hatch, president of Wake Forest University. “But we feel very strongly that they should be voting members of the board.”

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