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"Seismic policy shift frees Air Force Academy grads to pursue pro sports without 2-year commitment"

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by AztecBuff, Jul 11, 2016.

  1. AztecBuff

    AztecBuff Club Member Club Member

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    Be interesting to see how much (or if) this affects the Academy's athletic performance over the coming years.

    Thread title is headline of this article- http://gazette.com/seismic-policy-s...rts-without-2-year-commitment/article/1580109

    "A policy shift will allow service academy athletes to pursue professional sports immediately after graduation instead of waiting for two years, a move that could have a seismic impact at Air Force.

    "It's huge," two Falcons football assistants said Monday.

    "It immediately levels the playing field," said another.
    ...

    A new policy provided by the Air Force Academy on Monday, reflecting changes made in May 2016, states that a "service member can request to be tendered an appointment in the reserve upon graduation and satisfy their commissioned service obligation in the Ready Reserve."

    Athletic director Jim Knowlton said that, though graduates can apply to serve on reserve status instead of active duty, the decisions would be made on a case-by-case basis by the Air Force. Also, the policy would require a secured contract or binding commitment by a professional sports team, so it's not as if a second lieutenant would be able to opt out on a whim.

    Still, the change is immense. Throughout their existence, service academies have competed with recruits who largely understood a pro sports career would not be an option - notwithstanding the rare exceptions like Air Force's Chad Hennings and Navy's David Robinson. And while the odds of a pro sports career might be remote, the prospect of a required two-year commitment weeded out a high percentage of high-caliber athletes.
    ...
    "
     
  2. buff4bcs1985

    buff4bcs1985 Hail to the King

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    I got a buddy on the Rapids who played at the Naval Academy. He was drafted by the Rapids and joined the club for a couple of months and then headed to his deployment. he was expecting to be held to his full Service requirement only to be suddenly released back to the team 2 weeks ago.. This is gonna help the academies and its gonna be fun to watch
     
  3. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    This could make AFA very intriguing as a member of an expanded Pac-12.
     
  4. buffaholic

    buffaholic Club Member Club Member

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    Just jumped to head off the list for me
     
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  5. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    You would think the Big-12 would be all over them (again).
     
  6. Shldr2Shldr

    Shldr2Shldr Club Member Club Member

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    Still would be limited by their P.T. requirements a bit, but I could see them now adding athletes that could make that triple option they run absolutely lethal.
     
  7. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    Might not be as big a deal as we are making it out to be. The academies are still very tough places to get in to. It takes a special kind of person to want to go through four years of that, even with the possibility of a pro career afterwards. I'm sure the Air Force recognizes that they get better publicity from a professional athlete serving in the reserves than they do from that same guy siting in a missile silo for two years.
     
  8. BehindEnemyLines

    BehindEnemyLines beware the habu Club Member

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    Might the ACC pursue the Naval Academy? B1G go after Army?
     
  9. Uncle Ken

    Uncle Ken Orr no morr Club Member

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    1. Mercenaries make great mercenaries.

    2. If they join the Pac 12, then I'll update my "most hated school in the Pac" post.

    3. At least we won't have to listen to announcers poop all over themselves while discussing the amazing sacrifice of the great young men on the field committed to defending the Constitution. 'Cause, you know, many will be there for perfectly selfish reasons.

    What a horrible idea.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2016
  10. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    Heh.

    What's next? Ivy League athletic scholarships?
     
  11. TSchekler

    TSchekler Darth's Hero Club Member

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    I don't see how this really levels the playing field at all. It's still an academy that requires an assload of requirements to get in, physical fitness standards are not conducive to dominating football, and this only affects the 1 or 2 guys every year or every other year that have a realistic shot at the NFL. Their coaches biggest sales pitch to better athletes would be what?? "IF you prove to be good enough and make it through 4 years in the academy, you might have the opportunity to forego your commitment and go to the NFL"? I don't buy it.
     
  12. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    I tend to agree. It's not like this is going to open the floodgates for a bunch of 5* players to go to the Academy. It's still a place that takes a special kind of person to go there.
     
  13. TimmyDUBs

    TimmyDUBs Dirty haole Club Member

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    #FrontRangeRotationSchedule
     
  14. TSchekler

    TSchekler Darth's Hero Club Member

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    Exactly. They aren't all of the sudden fishing in a different recruiting pond.
     
  15. Scotch

    Scotch Registered User Club Member Junta Member

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    Yeah but what if they add the Naval Academy?
     
  16. The Ogre

    The Ogre Club Member Club Member

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    It's not policy, but it looks like it is. Kenyan Reynolds, Navy's QB, was told at graduation by Ash Carter that he is free to make the Ravens roster at receiver. He stands a good chance.

    They had a D-lineman who might have pro potential, too. Don't think he gets the same deal.
     
  17. BuffPride88

    BuffPride88 Club Member Club Member

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    They wouldn't be skipping out on their commitment. Simply going a part time reserve or National Guard route, is how the article reads to me. The AFA education compares to an Ivy League so no way is the government going to let those guys walk away from their commitment and the governments money. I am with Sackman and TSchek and don't see this doing much for any of the service academies. Unfortunately the selflessness that goes into the military may not be possessed by the players eyeing the NFL from high school.
     
  18. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    Well it definitely won't hurt. I think Navy and AFA could be mediocre in the Big-12/ACC. The offense they run is hard to prepare for and there are some bad teams in those conferences.
     
  19. Highlander

    Highlander Club Member Club Member

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    I have really mixed feelings on this one.

    I remember the announcers during an AF-ND game talking about the AF coaches behind closed doors discussing whether or not it was a good idea to be subjecting their 240 pound lineman against 320 pound ND players - there is serious risk for injury.

    On the flip side - why should my tax dollars pay for a kid to go to a military academy where, if they hit the lottery and sign a contract with a team (the stipulated rules), they don't have to pay back their scholarship? To my knowledge, no one else is afforded a reserve commission to fulfill 4-5 years of scholarship via a 2 year reserve stint. From this perspective, it's total bull****.

    I honestly think the academies would be better served stepping down a level and playing Ivy League schools, etc. in sports. Why should they be trying to compete in D1A in the first place?
     
  20. TSchekler

    TSchekler Darth's Hero Club Member

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    It obviously doesn't hurt, but it's not going to make a noticeable difference. And the problem with AFA/Navy in a P5 conference is that the athletes they currently have aren't good enough to beat or hang with P5 programs on a week in, week out basis, and once the natural bump in recruiting occurs from being in a P5 conference (which still won't be close to the other programs), there will be enough tape on them where defenses will have no major issues preparing.
     
  21. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    It's not about film on a team, it's about facing something you don't see very often and reps against it. You give a team two weeks to prepare for option offenses and they get way more reps in practice to get used to it but during the season there isn't enough time.
     
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  22. Uncle Ken

    Uncle Ken Orr no morr Club Member

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    I'll hate them almost as much.

    If Service Academies exist to create leaders to defend our Constitution, let's not muddy the waters in the name of sports glory. We've seen what that misplaced focus on sports has done for baylor and Penn State.

    It's imprudent to sacrifice the mission for something else, in my opinion.

    But yeah, I understand your question. I don't love the Naval Academy grads either, in many cases.
     
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  23. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    How is allowing them to serve out their service commitment in the reserves "muddying the waters". These are still leaders. The reserves and National Guard need leaders too. I don't see how this changes the academies mission. We are talking about maybe two or three guys per year at the most.
     
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  24. TSchekler

    TSchekler Darth's Hero Club Member

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    Stopping the option is about fundamentals, discipline and great coaching schemes, especially when they have inferior athletes. P5 players wouldn't need many reps to be ready for Air Force; the coaches just need to understand how to stop it and implement that game plan just like they do every week.
     
  25. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    You really think the coaches don't know how to stop the option? All they need is film to stop it? Come on now this goes against everything coaches say about defending the option in the middle of the season. They all say the option is no big deal the first game of the season, for a bowl game and off a bye week for a reason.
     
  26. Uncle Ken

    Uncle Ken Orr no morr Club Member

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    Part time reserve or National Guard is a pretty large disservice to the taxpayers. Look, if they're not deployable (hint: they won't be) they're letting their service team down.
     
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  27. TSchekler

    TSchekler Darth's Hero Club Member

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    I think AF has some OK success in the MWC because the other programs spend one week scheming and preparing for it and have athletes that are similar in talent level to AF. If AF joins a P5 conference, they would get crushed week in, week out. Maybe they would be able to be competitive against a CU or Oregon State, but they would never be a mediocre P5 team unless they somehow allowed all football players to forego their military obligation, regardless of NFL potential.
     
  28. zbuff

    zbuff Club Member Club Member

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    They could take Baylor's place.
     
  29. Uncle Ken

    Uncle Ken Orr no morr Club Member

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    Yes, the best way to keep up morale, is identify a few exceptional teammembers and treat them differently.

    To answer your question, Academy grads serving in the Reserves absolutely muddies the waters. It's exceptional treatment and undermines everything the Academies are supposed to be about. Not that they actually are, but once this emerges on the policy level, I think it's a pretty slippery slope.

    It could be argued that David Robinson never really served. He brought positive attention to the Naval Academy, but I have some real questions about his release from service as a taxpayer.
     
  30. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    We are talking about an exceptionally small number of people here. Roger Staubach, David Robinson, Chad Hennings...

    I guess I just don't see the problem, but I admit that's an opinion formed outside the experience of military service.
     
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