For some time I have commented that the MAC, like all G5 conferences, would come up with any funds needed to offer Full Cost of Attendance. Many nay-saying fans of the P5 and the wanna-be P5 fans rooting for teams in the American Athletic Conference have speculated that the MAC, Sun Belt, and perhaps Conference USA would fold under the weight of FCA.
I've even heard more than one self-deprecating MAC fan imply they think it was a bridge too far.
Today the conference announced that they will indeed go along with redefining the grant-in-aid of Student Athletes to include the Full Cost of Attendance.
So sayeth the MAC:
Cleveland, Ohio – With a strong commitment to sportsmanship, integrity and a student-first student-athlete experience, the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Council of Presidents affirms its commitment to the collegiate experience. The MAC will support the redefinition of an athletics grant-in-aid to include cost of attendance if autonomous legislation is enacted during the annual NCAA Convention in January, 2015.
The presidents of the MAC are committed to remaining a strong, vibrant and values-oriented NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision Conference, focused on the overall campus life experience of the individual student-athletes which includes academic success and graduation, social growth and teams competing at the highest competitive levels.
"The MAC is dedicated to supporting our student-athletes in the classroom, the community and on the playing field with the ultimate goal of graduating and having a great collegiate experience," said MAC Commissioner Jon Steinbrecher.
While I personally am not for pay-for-play athletics on our college campuses I can say with total comfort that a measure like FCA, which is a documented standard set by the university for all students, will be a healthy and appropriate compensation.