At last weekend’s General Conference in Salt Lake City, church leaders announced they were lowering the minimum mission age from 21 to 19 for women and from 19 to 18 for men. The policy change, which takes immediate effect, is expected to have a profound influence on college life across Utah, whose universities bid a temporary farewell each year to thousands of students answering the call of their church.This will likely mainly affect schools in Utah, which is important for the Big Sky, which features both Southern Utah and Weber State.
Rob Dauster, who writes pretty much everywhere in the college basketball world, wrote a nice article on this issue for SI, and how it will be good for colleges, because it may help them in their planning.
While the rule change will make it significantly less likely that a school recruiting an LDS player intent on going on a mission will see an immediate impact from him, it's actually a change that will be beneficial to the programs.While there will be some issues during the implementation phase of this, it seems like it will be to the programs' benefit over the long-run. However, I know a lot of readers are a lot more tuned in on this issue than me, so I would love to hear your thoughts on what impact it will have?
"It's actually what we would prefer," said Stew Morrill, the coach at Utah State, a program that he estimates has between three and five missionaries on scholarship every season. "What we've always done is if a kid's old enough, if he's got a birthday that makes him 19 before he would enter college, about half the time that's the case, than we encourage them to go right away."
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