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NCAA tables talk of extending football signing period

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The more the NCAA thought about it, the less likely they were convinced to sign on to a new football signing period.

The NCAA has tabled consideration about adding a three-day signing period in December in addition to national signing day for those players who are ready to sign and who want to skip the whole furor over signing.

FSU coach Jimbo Fisher has favored an early signing period, but he is on record as wanting it to be in August, before a player’s senior year. The Seminoles are among the leading schools in the country with early commitments.

“If a player knows what he wants to do, then do it,” Fisher said in the ACC spring meetings. “It helps them academically, it helps them emotionally, it helps the whole ‘zoo” of recruiting.”

Critics say that the early signing period would put extra pressure on athletes to rush their visits. They say it would limit a player who didn’t blossom until his senior season.

Fisher said that if a coach left to go somewhere else or was fired, that signee would be released from his contract.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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