I agree with you on everything except on one point. I don't think the NCAA (by moving the dates later) is going to change anything especially with P5 schools. These guys are out recruiting through travel coaches and others 24x7x365. I see a cottage industry growing even more for P5 scouts to feed recruiting information to college coaches because the time frame is shorter. I do not see recruits empowered by the NCAA because there is less time to shop around to really figure out what a recruit wants...at least in my personal experience. On the contrary.
Son was recruited by a couple D1 P5s, a handful of D1 mid-majors, Ivy, Patriot and D3 schools over 20 months. It took him time to figure out what he wanted, see these schools, and meet the coaches. By moving the dates up, this would have limited him in making a major life decision. I was fine with the previous dates, but my thing is the new school commitment date and recruiting timeline is limited by the NCAA. I'd rather see the schools/coaches empowered through a financial or academic acceptance commitment when a recruit is ready to make that decision. We don't need the NCAA's guidance or backwards wisdom. We need the schools financial commitment when a recruit verbals so both are committed. Money talks and bullsh*t walks.
As always, JMO.