USA Today – Plantation (Fla.) running back Alex Collins capped his strange and winding recruitment by having his father sign his National Letter of Intent, paving the five-star prospect’s path to Arkansas.
It took Collins 24 hours to send his papers to coach Bret Bielema and his staff, however. Prior to a signing announcement on Wednesday, Collins’ mother, Andrea McDonald, confiscated her son’s letter of intent and disappeared, essentially preventing Collins from signing with the Razorbacks – or signing with any school, per NCAA rules.
For recruits under the age of 21, a legal guardian needs to put his or her signature on signing papers for it to be considering binding by the NCAA. Collins was able to send an official document to Arkansas by having his father, Johnny Collins, sign his National Letter of Intent.
Mom runs off with your National Letter of Intent? Well here comes dad to save the day. The day after Alex Collins’ mom, Andrea, stole his letter of intent to Arkansas, his father, Johnny showed up to sign his documentation. I guess its a NCAA rule that anyone under the age of 21 needs their legal guardians signature. And with Andrea wanting her son to go to Miami, that wasn’t happening. Alex claims he doesn’t blame his mom as he knows ‘she was just giving him more time to make his choice because she knew how big of a life changing decision it was.’ Yeah, dude. Thats what she was doing. She stole your paperwork so that you’d have more time to make your choice. A simple conversation with you wouldn’t have sufficed. I guess that’s why she’s also hiring an attorney over your decision to sign with Arkansas.
I would no doubt lose my shit if my mom pulled this kind of shit with me. I can’t take going to school and trying to sign up for classes only for them to tell me I need to re-sign up for financial aid, or that my credit limit has been reached, or that the class has been filled out. My head starts to spin and my blood pressure gets higher than Tyrann Mathieu when he was at LSU. Don’t worry about where I’m going to school. I’m the one going there, not you. You’re not paying, the school is. My skills as a football player are. Let me live my life.
A more disturbing issue is that the NCAA require a legal guardians signature up to the age of 21. You can literally live by yourself at 18 and attend school, but if you decide to play on a sports team and receive a scholarship, you need mommy or daddy’s signature to make it official. That blows my mind. Its almost as dumb as receiving financial aid for school and living on your own, but being required to list your parent’s income as well. Like it makes a difference how much your parents make if you live in a different city or state. Yeah, my mom makes $60,000, but I’m 20 and haven’t lived with her in 2 years. That’s literally what students are left saying. I can remember signing up for financial aid and being dumbfounded by that. Granted I lived with my mom, so it was required either way, but if you’re working and financing yourself, your parents income should make no difference. Same thing with be a student athlete.
If you’re 18, 19, or 20 and taking care of yourself, your parents should have no impact on your letter of intent. That school wants you, not your family. If unnecessary rules like this weren’t created, Alex’s mom would have had no reason to steal her son’s paperwork, his signing day wouldn’t have been ruined, and his father wouldn’t have had to be called in to sign his son into college. If you’re legal to gamble, smoke cigarettes and fight for our country at 18, then you can sign your own letter of intent without a parent’s consent at 18.