TYLER, TX (KLTV) -
By October 1st, the power five conferences will submit their own legislation to the NCAA. That would permit its schools to offer cost of attendance stipends as well as better insurance benefits. This could have a major impact on the smaller mid major programs, such as Stephen F. Austin. SFA athletic director Robert Hill spoke with the South Tyler Rotary Club on Monday and East Texas sports was there to find out how these new rule changes could impact SFA's future in athletics.
An upset win over Virginia Commonwealth in the NCAA Tournament put Stephen F. Austin on a national map. But with the power five conferences in the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, SEC, and Pac-12 expected to approve legislation that would allow cost of attendance stipends and possibly more, it may become hard for SFA to dream big.
"It's going to take some planning and careful consideration on how we might be able to do that," Hill said. "Its going to get much more expensive and money is an issue."
Being a mid-major program, the Jacks might have to pick their battles in which sport to spend the most money. Hill made it clear, he wants the SFA men's basketball program to remain relevant. "I think those schools willing to look at cost of attendance for things like basketball, that's an opportunity there that if you really want to be player," Hill said. "That is something you are going to have to consider."
Competing on the FCS level in Football does allow SFA to focus on the other division one sports. And with the top prospects in the country already committing to schools like North Carolina and UConn, Hill feels the Jacks will still get the players they target.
"We are not going to beat Duke out for a player," Hill said. "But that second team guy or something like that who could really help us and develop into a great player, we still feel like we have a chance on that."