SEC Coaches push for early signing period

DESTIN, FL – The football coaches of the SEC voted 9-3 here Wednesday to establish an early signing period in December.

The proposal faces many hurdles before it can become an NCAA rule, but it crossed a significant milestone by reaching a majority of SEC coaches for the first time.

 Georgia head coach Mark Richt has long been an opponent of an early signing period but changed his mind because of a stipulation that was added that would make players who take an official visit ineligible from signing early. That would keep players from making official visits during the season, which most every SEC coach opposes.

 "It makes a lot of sense to me," Richt said, "but it didn't until that stipulation there."

 The new signing period would be the Monday before Dec. 1, according to the SEC's proposal, by which time most colleges now have their classes mostly finished.

 Colleges could have 18-22 players signed in the early period, LSU head coach Les Miles said. That would leave the traditional February signing period, which has become an annual holiday for some fans, as a non-event.

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