College football program staff sizes have ballooned in recent years, especially at the off-field support level, but a new proposal could put a cap on them.

Legislation introduced into the 2017-18 cycle by the Division I Council, if passed, would require schools to designate 30 individuals who will participate in on-campus football recruiting activities in FBS, according to If passed, the proposal would become effective Aug. 1, 2018.

Those people would be able to initiate written and electronic correspondence with prospective student-athletes, their parents or legal guardians.

Current staffs have a head coach and nine assistants, but that will increase on Jan. 9 to 10 assistants. It also would include all graduate assistant coaches. FBS schools are allowed a maximum of four graduate assistants in football. There is no limit on off-the-field assistants such as quality control staff members.

Each school would be required to declare those designations before its first preseason practice.

Schools could make changes to the designations only because of attrition, and any change would require the approval of the director of athletics.

Under the proposal, all designees would be required to pass the NCAA recruiting exam every year before engaging in any recruiting activities.

“We feel we have reinforced the rules that are already on the books,” said Bob Bowlsby, chair of the Football Oversight Committee and commissioner of the Big 12 Conference. “The head coach, the soon to be 10 assistants and the four graduate assistants are the people who are supposed to be coaching student-athletes, preparing them for the game and doing the recruiting.”

Bowlsby and Alabama coach Nick Saban have been on opposite sides of this issue for months. It racheted up in the spring when Saban reacted to Bowlsby, who said the NCAA Football Oversight Committee he chairs will take a “deep dive” on personnel in the next year with the potential goal of regulating the number of people an individual program employs, reported. Bowlsby mentioned that one unspecified school employed a football staff of 97 people that included analysts, coaches and other administrators. The assumption was that Bowlsby was talking about Alabama, reported.

“All these people who complain about staff sizes — we pay interns, really, really little money, a very small amount of money,” Saban said. “You would be shocked at how cheap the labor really is — almost like criminal. And why we have administrators complaining about how many cheap-labor people you have, trying to promote the profession, trying to do something to develop our game and the coaches in our game because how else do you develop guys?”