National Signing Day History
National Signing Day marks the start of the college football signing season. There are signing dates for other sports, but football's is the most popular one. From this day forward, high school football players can sign a National Letter of Intent to play football for a university in the National College Athletic Association (NCAA). The National Letter of Intent is a binding agreement between a potential student-athlete and a NLI member institution. Once signed, the agreement requires the athlete to attend and represent the institution for at least two semesters or three quarters, and in return, the institution must provide athletic financial aid for the same duration. National Signing Day marks the start of many football players' careers as they transition into a more professional setting.
National Signing Day was established in 1981 by the College Football Association in an effort to eliminate separate conference signing dates and force student-athletes to commit to only one NCAA institution. Prior to 1981, NCAA football conferences required recruits to sign separate letters of intent since conference letters only restricted signing within the conference itself. National Signing Day is now held on the third Wednesday of February annually.
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National Signing Day References and Related Siteswww.nationalletter.org: National Intent Letter NCAA: Scholarships NCAA: Recruiting Athletic Scholarships: Spending Money Aspen Institute: The History Behind the Debate Over Paying NCAA Athletes