They’ve got it backwards.
Yesterday, the news broke that the NCAA is consideringlegislation that would end post-collegiate athletes competing in college meets. Two weeks ago, our CC regional rep, who does a fantastic job, sent along the new legislation for us to look over. After confirming with him that indeed this would eliminate non-college athletes from competing in college meets (Think Stanford, TX Relays, Florida Relays, or almost any meet really), I sent the info to the TFAA to get the word out because as someone who coaches 5 post-collegiate athletes in addition to my college coaching duties, this would effectively kill sub-elite racing, destroy the field events, and hamper all but maybe the top 10 in the U.S. in their events.
Why is there a move towards this direction?
Put simply, it's an attempt to grab "fans." To make track more popular.
As best as I can tell, it’s part of a trend that is coming from within some track coaches and also the NCAA. There is a trend towards trying to make track like “other sports.” That trend includes emphasizing scoring every single meet. It makes sense to the non-track orientated person that every sport is scored. So why shouldn’t track be the same?
The same trend has created a push for dual meets, which is perhaps a yearning for back in the day when dual meets reigned supreme. Us young folk are regaled with stories of Oregon vs. UCLA or whatever other historic team you want to talk about. We hear about the glory days and about how people showed up to watch track.
To get to the heart of the matter we need to explore these two premises before finishing off with the rule changes.