The San Francisco 49ers open phase 3 of the 2016 offseason workout program on Tuesday. This means OTAs and the eventual mandatory minicamp in June to close out the program. The OTAs are voluntary, but the 49ers have reportedly had solid participation thus far.
Rookies took part in mandatory minicamp a little over a week ago, and most will likely return on Tuesday for OTAs. I say most because NFL rules create an issue for some rookies. If a player has not yet graduated from college, he cannot participate in his new team's offseason workout program until his school has complete finals. There is an exception for rookie minicamp.
This rule impacts players from schools that are on the quarter system. The semester system usually has exams in early-to-mid May. The quarter system usually has exams in early June. I did a search and among the 49ers rookies, three schools are impacted by this rule. Oregon, Stanford, and Louisiana Tech all appear to be on the quarter system.
This would potentially impact draft picks DeForest Buckner (Oregon), Joshua Garnett (Stanford), and Jeff Driskel (Louisiana Tech), and UDFAs Alex Balducci (Oregon) and Devon Cajuste (Stanford). Buckner already graduated, so he can participate in everything. Driskel graduated from Florida, and was a graduate transfer to Louisiana Tech, so he can participate in everything.
Fooch's update: According to Matt Barrows, Balducci and Cajuste both graduated already, and thus can attend practice. Garnett cannot.
Garnett, Balducci and Cajuste are all question marks, as I cannot determine if they have graduated. Matt Barrows seemed to write in the context of Garnett not having graduated yet. I have not found anything else regarding Balducci or Cajuste regarding graduation. It is worth noting that Cajuste is a fifth-year senior, so it is possible he has done enough to complete his degree already.
If that is the case, they will be impacted by their final exam schedule. Stanford final exams run June 3-8, and Oregon final exams run June 6-10. The 49ers OTAs wrap up June 2, and are followed by mandatory minicamp June 7-9. That would mean Garnett and Cajuste would basically be eligible for the very end of minicamp, while Balducci would not if he has not graduated.