The NCAA did something right! And then did another thing right! And another??

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

It’s time to play Say Something Nice: the NCAA made a couple of very good rule changes! Sure, a person could go all IT’S ABOUT TIME or DROP IN THE BUCKET or STORM INDIANAPOLIS AND FEED MARK EMMERT TO THE RACCOONS*, but let’s focus on the positive.

First, theNCAA will no longer allow Division I teams to tell former students — AKA transferring athletes — which schools they may and may not consider as transfer destinations. There’s a simple new process and everything:

The Division I Council adopted a proposal this week that creates a new “notification-of-transfer” model. This new system allows a student to inform his or her current school of a desire to transfer, then requires that school to enter the student’s name into a national transfer database within two business days. Once the student-athlete’s name is in the database, other coaches are free to contact that individual.

There are still conference-specific rules to navigate, plus other restrictions that could use some loosening, but it’s a start. This hopefully means the end of “Mean old Coach X blocks 37 schools from Helpless QB’s transfer list” headlines. And no, this isn’t gonna turn college sports into total transfer anarchy.

On the even more adventurous front, football players can now participate in up to four games without burning their redshirt years.

This change promotes not only fairness for college athletes, but also their health and well-being. Redshirt football student-athletes are more likely to remain engaged with the team, and starters will be less likely to feel pressure to play through injuries. Coaches will appreciate the additional flexibility and ability to give younger players an opportunity to participate in limited competition.

This is something coaches have long wanted, for obvious reasons. Bowl games and games against cupcake opponents can now sort of function as preseason games, with coaches (and fans!) getting an early look at hyped freshmen. This also essentially expands each team’s active roster, which will be highly valuable deep into November and beyond.

Like most new rules, it’s great for Alabama, the team that usually has the best freshmen, but it’s nice for pretty much every team.

Finally, the NCAA announced it’s imposing a little bit of order on the rapidly expanding bowl season. Not too much order, just setting a cap on the number of predetermined bowl ties each conference can have, based on the numbers of bowl-eligible teams in previous years. This is especially nice for most of the mid-major leagues, who usually have to scrape for leftovers that the big leagues can’t fill.

NCAA, keep this little hot streak going. Here are some more good ideas!

* Please do not do this.

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