NCAA Transfer Rules: What Changes Are Coming?

June 6th, 2018 | by CollegeAD
NCAA Transfer Rules: What Changes Are Coming?
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NCAA transfer

NCAA transfer rules, which have long conflicted with major conference wishes as well as the best interests of the student-athletes, appear to have some welcome change on the horizon. Next week, on June 11, the NCAA transfer working group meets and will likely change the transfer model from a permission-based to a notification based one.

The existing rules state that Division I athletes must seek the permission of their coaching staff if they wish to transfer to another school; concurrently the new school must get permission to recruit for the student-athlete to receive financial aid–a scholarship.

The new rules proposal allows the athlete to notify the coaches, and at that point, they are free to be recruited by other schools. When the athlete notifies the school of their intent to transfer, their name will go into a database maintained by the NCAA so they know who is eligible for recruitment. Stronger rules against tampering are in the works to alleviate coaches concerns about illegal recruiting.

Although the proposed NCAA transfer rules change put most of the control back in the student’s hands, they still are required at sit out a year in the two most high profile sports, football and basketball. There are NCAA waivers available to athletes in unusual situations,–if the recruiting coach leaves, if the current school is facing NCAA sanctions and the athlete is not involved. The SEC passed a rules change last week that allows in-conference transfers (from school’s facing NCAA sanctions) to play immediately if the NCAA grants that waiver.

The question of athletes sitting out a year of eligibility is a thorny one for the NCAA and the transfer working group is not expected to address this component of the transfer issue this year. The two major points on that topic are allowing a student to transfer without penalty if there is a coaching change after they sign a letter of intent, and requiring schools to commit to graduate scholarships for the duration of the program, not the time the athlete participates in the sport.

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