The Air Force Academy has decided it will not allow its athletes to defer two years of active duty and immediately join a professional NFL team, according to Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post.
No new Department of Defense policy has been signed but the Air Force Academy will not approve applications for ready reserve, according to Jhabvala.
The Air Force issued the following statement:
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“The Air Force notified Academy officials (Thursday) that the service would not approve requests to waiver active duty military service commitments for cadet athletes. Cadets will be required to serve two years active duty prior to entering Ready Reserve status which would permit their participation in professional sports. The Air Force places tremendous value on our cadet athletes and their contributions to the nation as we continue to build leaders of character, engage in combat operations overseas and continue to ensure our highest military readiness at home.”
The decision was made before the NFL draft, which is unfortunate news for Jalen Robinette who could be drafted on the final day of the draft. According to the new 2016 policy, Robinette spent a year preparing for the NFL draft and was just told that he will not be able to turn professional.