As the National Collegiate Athletic Association contemplates how it will redesign its governance and membership structure, some groups, including conference commissioners, the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics and the Division I Faculty Athletics Representatives Board, have suggested or at least been open to the notion of the largest athletic programs forming their own division. That would allow more leniency in how they could recruit and provide financial aid to athletes.
But the group that represents FARs in all divisions, the Faculty Athletics Representatives Association, wants Division I to stay intact. In a position statement obtained by Inside Higher Ed, the FARA Executive Committee argues that Division I institutions are committed to a group of core academic and athletic values and primarily compete against each other, so retaining the current division would be "the most practical option."
The FARA also wants the Division I Board of Directors to comprise a "small group" of university presidents (as it does currently) and CEOs "looking to position intercollegiate athletics through the changing and challenging landscape of American society." The group would not make policy but would set an overarching agenda and oversee NCAA leadership at lower levels. FARs, athletic directors, coaches, athletes and other stakeholders would have a say in policy development, and would be entitled to seats on the various boards, councils and committees that make rules.
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