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Will winter athletes get extra year of eligibility? It sounds likely

This could change the game of basketball in a lot of ways.

NCAA Basketball Tournament - West Regional - Anaheim Photo by Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

The NCAA has already ruled that all participants in fall collegiate sports will get an extra year of eligibility. It is unclear right now how that will impact Kentucky, but there are several potential positive implications down the road. Now this issue has been passed on to winter sports, including college basketball.

The Division I Council continues to meet on issues related to winter sports, and have made some decisions already. However, the vote on extra eligibility has yet to come.

One decision that has been made is an affirmation of the reduction in schedule. At this point, teams will play a maximum of 27 regular season games. So for those of you ready to print those 40-0 shirts, you may want to make some adjustments.

Basketball analyst Jeff Goodman reports that the final vote on the extra year of eligibility is set to come next week. And while the consensus seems to be that something needs to be done to support these athletes, not everyone is sure what that should look like.

However, Goodman reports that a source close to the situation told him that it is almost a done deal. “It should pass based on precedence with fall sports,” the source said.

As discussed previously, this could have major implications on the Kentucky basketball program. Not only could we get an extra year from guys like Jacob Toppin and Dontaie Allen, but Olivier Sarr’s case for immediate eligibility could get a boost if he has two years of remaining eligibility instead of one.

Stay tuned.