WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIS) - University of South Carolina Harris Pastides has been elected Chair of the NCAA Division 1 Board of Directors.
"It's a high honor and an endorsement from nearly 350 universities," said Pastides exclusively to WIS. "It's a time of great reform and transformation."
Pastides was busy in his first week as Chair, the NCAA passed new legislation that increases the value of an athletic scholarship by several thousand dollars to cover the federally determined actual cost of attendance.
Pastides said that the increase will apply to all full scholarship athletes. USC has about 450 full scholarship student athletes.
"Every student athlete who come in is given a package that covers tuition and fees, books and living expenses, food and things like that, that scholarship will be increased by several thousands of dollars," said Pastides.
Legislative autonomy for the Big Five - the Big Ten, Big 12, Atlantic Coast Conference, Pac-12 and Southeastern Conference - was voted in last year and Saturday at the NCAA convention was their first chance to use.
The group of 65 schools is now allowed to pass legislation on its own, without the support of the schools in the other 27 conferences that make up Division I.
The legislation passed was permissive, not mandatory. Schools outside those conferences could also follow these new rules, but they are not required to do so.
President Pastides said they also passed new polices that will help universities do a better job managing concussions and will put physicians in charge determining if a player can return to play after a head injury.
Pastides said though he has taken on more responsibility, USC will always be his top priority.
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