Debbie Mayfield Wants Four Year Colleges in Florida to Have More Access for Intercollegiate Sports

More intercollegiate  sports could be coming to the Sunshine State if state Sen. Debbie Mayfield, R-Melbourne, gets her way.

Last week, Mayfield introduced the “Baccalaureate Degree Access” bill which will “allow four  year state colleges to participate in four year sports programs” and she showcased the legislation this week.

“This bill will allow more student athletes an opportunity to attend college and participate in sports,” she said on Wednesday.

Her office offered the rationale behind the proposal.

“Currently Florida Statute specifies that state colleges shall ‘not participate in intercollegiate athletics beyond the two year level.’  This outdated provision was written when state colleges were only permitted to be two year community colleges.  Today, thousands of college students are seeking their bachelor degrees from one of Florida’s 28 state colleges,” Mayfield’s office noted. “This legislation would remove this condition from the existing statute, allowing state colleges the opportunity to implement four year athletic programs and retain talented student athletes.”

Jeff Carr, the athletic director for Eastern Florida State College, approved the legislation,” saying it will help

“Eastern Florida State College has approximately 2,000 students enrolled in 20 bachelor degree tracks.  The allowance of Eastern Florida State College to participate in four year athletics will provide many more student athletes the ability to acquire the outstanding education provided by Eastern Florida State College greatly assuring their future success,” Carr said.

So far, there is no companion bill over in the House.