NCAA’s Reevaluation of Sports Wagering Rules Prompted by Noah Shannon’s Yearlong Suspension

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IOWA CITY — Iowa defensive lineman Noah Shannon might have a path to playing college football again after all.

The NCAA’s Division I Committee on Student-Athlete Reinstatement and Legislative Committee will “reexamine” its sports wagering reinstatement guidelines, the collegiate sports governing body announced Wednesday.

If the proposed policies are approved later this month, first-time offenses for athletes who did not bet on their own team — which would include Shannon’s situation — would no longer result in a suspension.

“This is an important step toward modernizing the NCAA’s approach to sports wagering,” NCAA President Charlie Baker said in a news release Wednesday.

The NCAA committee is expected to “complete its review and finalize recommendations” by mid-October, and a final vote will be at the end of the month, according to the news release. The new policy could be implemented retroactively, leaving the door open for a possible return for Shannon.

Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz said his first reaction to the NCAA’s announcement was “happiness.

“I just hope it does go through, and I hope Noah gets to get on the field this year because it would be so well-deserved,” Ferentz said on his weekly radio show.

Ferentz, who has been a frequent critic of the NCAA during and after the sports wagering investigation, also expressed a desire for an expedited approval process.

“You would think, since we had this breakthrough revelation, that maybe we could act on it in the next couple of days,” Ferentz said. “Have an emergency meeting. … You’d think it might be something they could address in the very near future, but I realize we’re all busy too.

If the NCAA indeed approves the changes and applies it retroactively to Shannon — albeit a big “if” — it could theoretically open the door for Shannon to play in the last four regular season games. The former all-Big Ten honorable mention does not have any remaining eligibility after this season.

“Could this maybe have taken place somewhere in May, June, July?” Ferentz said. “Any time before this season actually started and somebody’s life was impacted.

The NCAA’s proposed changes would not apply to athletes who allegedly bet on their own teams, including former Iowa football players Aaron Blom, Jack Johnson, Arland Bruce IV and Reggie Bracy.

Ferentz previously said Shannon bet on a different University of Iowa sports team on campus. The NCAA handed him a one-year suspension, which seemed to effectively end Shannon’s college football career.


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