UPDATE:Read an entire story on the early signing period at end of this article.
SEC coaches are split on an early signing period. Phil Fulmer and Nick Saban favor the mid-December signing period. Saban advocates the position because it means less time worrying over players who already have verbally committed. Leading the opposition is Mark Richt of Georgia. Richt is worried changes would make recruiting even “nuttier,” according to Ron Higgins of The Commercial Appeal.
“A lot of high school coaches are opposed to having it (an early signing period) before a senior year, and I can understand why,” Saban said. “But I also feel we spend six weeks after Christmas chasing down guys we’ve had committed for six months or year, worrying about whether they are going to flip on you.
“With an early signing period, we could spent a lot of time on the guys who haven’t committed yet and learning about the younger guys in an evaluation process.”
Tennessee’s Phillip Fulmer said he sees both sides of the argument, but now is swayed for an early period.
“There’s no reason you can’t get some of the guys off the board, and spend that time and money babysitting kids the entire month of January,” Fulmer said.
Last year the league discussed the early signing period, and voted it down 9-3. Fulmer was on the fence last year, saying he saw both sides of the issue. Voting for the proposal last year were LSUâ€™s Les Miles, Vandyâ€™s Bobby Johnson and Kentuckyâ€™s Rich Brooks.
Urban Meyer was against it. He cited difficulty in getting to know players with an early signing period.
With the move by Saban and Fulmer to favoring the rule change, the vote is tightening.
UPDATE: Here’s a story from The State.
Tuberville seems to support the rule change. Spurrier, Croom and Petrino sound like they are opposed. The story cites a survey by the American Football Coaches Association; the survey claims 70-percent of college coaches favor the idea of an early signing period.