New Air Force policy eliminates two-year military requirement for athletes

When it comes to the military academies on the football field, they don’t get a ton of love from some recruits because of requirements after school is over. Now, it looks like Air Force is going to make a big impact going into the 2016 season.

This week, they announced that football players and any other athletes looking to pursue a career in professional sports will not have to fulfill their two-year requirement following their graduation from the academy.

“It’s huge,” two Falcons football assistants told The Gazette‘s Brent Briggeman on Monday. “It immediately levels the playing field.”

This will likely allow Air Force to follow the same path the Naval Academy took not too long ago. They allowed former quarterback Keenan Reynolds to put off his commitment so he can play in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens.

“Keenan Reynolds may end up being the greatest thing to happen to Air Force baseball,” Falcons baseball coach Mike Kazlausky said.

One player that this new policy will help out a lot is current New Orleans Saints tight end Garrett Griffin, who will visit high schools as a recruiter while playing in the NFL.

“I’m happy to do whatever,” he said. “It would be awesome to pursue the NFL stuff, but at the same time I know why I went to the academy and it wasn’t to play in the NFL – that was just something that happened. If I go to my duty station on Aug. 1, I’m happy with that.”

This will certainly affect what the Falcons are able to do in the recruiting game now that they can tell players they don’t have to put their professional careers on hold to serve in the military.

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John Franklin III winning respect of teammates
John Franklin III winning respect of teammates