NCAA Mid-year Transfer Reminders

Rick-Allen-Thumb-150It is common for athletes to transfer from one school to another in the middle of the academic year.  Here are some general reminders about midyear transfer situations.

1. Baseball players transferring TO an NCAA Division I program at midyear cannot be eligible until the following academic year.  This is true regardless of whether the athlete is transferring from a two-year or four-year school.

2. The above is also true for Division I basketball.

3. 4-4 transfers in bowl subdivision football and men’s ice hockey, as well as in baseball and basketball, are ineligible to compete during their first year in residency.

4. Athletes in baseball or basketball looking for immediate eligibility upon transfer need to look at NCAA Div. II, Div. III, NAIA, or a two-year college.

5. Find out when your grades from this term will be posted to your transcript.  Request a copy of your transcript ASAP.

6. You must have written permission from your present NCAA Division I or II school before speaking to another Division I or II school about the possibility of a transfer.  Request this “permission to contact” before the athletic offices are closed for the holiday break if possible.

For more detailed information, you can search the blogs on our website, or contact us for assistance at 913-766-1235.

About Rick Allen

25+ years NCAA Rules Expertise, including Director of Compliance at 2 major DI schools

Former President of National Association for Athletic Compliance (NAAC)

Conducts compliance reviews and audits at NCAA Schools throughout the U.S.

Consulted with NAIA schools transitioning to NCAA membership status

Dad of a DI & DII student-athlete

More posts by
View Comments

331 Responses to NCAA Mid-year Transfer Reminders

  • GregO

    Rick,

    Enjoy the site – just a quick question for you following up on this topic – Mid-Year Transfer Reminders…

    I spoke to someone at the NCAA today regarding a D1 baseball transfer – if a player transfers from a D1 school after the Fall semester to another D1 school – they will count the Spring and the following Fall semesters as the 2 full semesters that the athlete needs to sit out and the player would then be eligible to compete in games that following Spring. Is this your understanding as well?

    Thanks.

    Greg

    • Greg, I agree with the answer you were given by the NCAA staffperson regarding your particular question, but there’s an extra issue to keep in mind. The player must be eligible from an academic standpoint at the beginning of the academic year in order to play in the spring. In your scenario, if the athlete does not satisfy the requirement for degree hours needed at the start of the academic year, but achieves that number at the end of the fall term, he would not be eligible to play in the spring.

    • LC Jr.

      Rick,
      I’m a first time freshman, I was recruited by a D3 school for basketball, I have practiced but has not dressed out or played a game or traveled with the team, It’s a very expensive private school and I can’t afford to stay after this semester, this has been a stressful financial situation for me and my family. I am transferring to a D2, I’m considering walking on the football team. My current D3 school do not have football. Although I’m not being recruited by the D2 and it’s for a different sport do I have to sit out a year and do I need any form of waiver or written permission from the D3 basketball coach?

      Please inform
      LC, Jr.

      • Hi LC,

        Because you are a Div. III athlete since you were recruited by the school and have practiced with the team, you will need permission from your current school before the coaches at the Div. II school can speak with you about a possible transfer. Since you will be transferring for a different sport, you should not have to sit out a year.

        Rick

        • Dan

          Rick,
          I am a baseball player at a NAIA school in Kentucky. I am from California and want to transfer back to an NAIA school back home. I received a scholarship and was wondering if that can prevent me from playing in the spring if I transfer after the first semester even though the schools are in two different states.

          Dan

          • Dan,

            You would need to be released from your scholarship at your current school in order to be eligible at the next school. You will also need to see if playing in Fall games for school A will effect your eligibility to play for school B in the Spring.

            Rick

    • Brett

      Rick,

      I am currently a division one baseball player but I am going to transfer to some other division one school back in my home state to save money. I was wondering if I go through the season and get my request then will I be able to apply into a school that late? I know regular student transfer deadlines are around April and I am wondering if I get my permission to talk to coaches in the first week of June if ill be able to apply to whatever school I find fit to continue playing ball?

      Brett

      • Hi Brett,

        That depends upon the policies of the school that you choose to attend, and as part of those policies, how much influence the coaches can have on helping you through the admission process. Your question is definitely one you should be thinking about, but the answer will vary from one school to another. You may want to anonymously contact the transfer admissions office of the schools you are considering and ask them what their policies are for late admission applications.

        Rick

        • Lori

          Dear Rick, 12/1/2013
          I talked to the NCAA and they said “in the last 5 months the recent interpetation of the law is that if you have a letter of acceptance from the school in which you want to transfer to you may contact the coach without a letter of permission to contact from your current school.” My question is if my son doesn’t sign a NLI or a Big ten tender at the spring signing is he free to sign with another big 10 school when the academic year is over? Is the NLI null and void after the first year served? Or does he still need a complete release to play for another Big 10?
          Thanks
          Lori

          • Lori,

            The NLI and the release involved in a transfer are two different processes. After attending the school with which he signs an NLI (assuming he does) for one full academic year, the NLI is no longer a factor. He will still need “permission to contact” and a release to transfer to another NCAA school whether within, or outside, of the Big 10.

            Rick

  • Brad

    Rick,
    My son plays baseball for a D1 school and isn’t happy with the amount of playing time given to him. He would consider a transfer to another school but actually likes the current school culture and his major. Can he get in his required year of sitting out of D1 baseball by continuing to attend his current college next year and not play baseball on the team, and then transfer to another D1 the following year and play baseball? Also, as a related question, assuming he can stay at his current school, could he register to have a ‘PE’ class at a nearby JC and play baseball for them during his “off year”, while attending his current college for academic classes?

    • Hi Brad,

      I admire the “outside the box” thinking, but the answer to both questions is no. When a player has to “sit out” a year when transferring from one Div. I program to another, the official term used is that they are serving “a year in residence” at the school where they intend to play ball, so your son won’t be able to do his “sit out” year while attending his current college.

      Also, to be eligible to play for a JC, an athlete must be enrolled at the JC as a full-time student, so registering for just a PE class won’t be sufficient.

      Rick

  • laurie

    can my daughter attend a junior college in the fall of her freshman year and then transfer to an NAIA school and participate in the spring?

    • Hi Laurie,

      Yes, your daughter can attend a junior college for her first semester of college and then participate in the spring at an NAIA school. However, if she’s in a sport that competes in both the Fall and Spring semester (golf or tennis, for example), keep in mind that she could be charged with two seasons of competition within the same academic year.

      Rick

  • Paul Dignan

    Rick,

    My son is swimming at a d-3 school and is considering transferring to a d-1 school
    Does he need to get a “permission to contact”?
    Does his coach?
    Will he have to sit out at all?
    Will he still be eligible for his student loans?

    Thanks, Paul

    • Hi Paul,

      Yes, your son will need to get permission to speak with coaches at Division I schools about a possible transfer. If his coach is going to help your son with the transfer process, he can talk to other coaches with no restrictions. Your son should not have to sit out this year, as long as the Div. III school doesn’t object to the transfer and as long as he’s academically eligible. As far as his student loans are concerned, you’ll need to check with the financial aid offices at the Div I schools that he is considering.

      Good luck with this transfer.

      • Eric R

        Rick-

        Does Paul’s situation apply for baseball as well? If I was to attend a D3 school and play my freshman year, could I transfer to a D1 or D2 without having to sit out a year?

        Thanks

        • Hi Eric,

          Based on the conversation that we just had and the fact that you’re not yet registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center, I suggest you read the article on our website titled “Attending Junior College? Make Sure You’re a Qualifier.”

          Good luck!

          Rick

  • Tucker Smith

    Dear Rick,

    I need your help for my understanding. This is my predicament…if i graduated highschool in the spring of 2010, and was then enrolled at a NAIA school on a football scholarship in the fall of 2010, were I was then redshirted as a freshman. I then left the spring semester of 2011 due to personal reasons. I am now currently enrolled and I am contemplating on attending and transferring to a JUCO this fall of 2011. If successful can I then transfer to a Division 1 school and be eligible that coming fall of 2012 after only one semester at the JUCO and? If not what are my options and the rules? And possible what could be the penalties of this action? Also I still have four years of eligibility left.

    • Hi Tucker,

      Your situation is one that’s more appropriate for an individual consultation. I’ll follow up with a private e-mail to you regarding your questions.

      Rick

  • Chuck

    Rick,

    Would a Division II student athlete that plays a spring sport lose a year of eligibility if he/she participated in workouts and scrimmages in the fall, but, decides to transfer to another school in the spring (even if he/she didn’t play at the new school in the spring)?

    • Hi Chuck,

      As long as the student-athlete didn’t play in any games or scrimmages in the Fall against outside competition, he/she would not lose a year of eligibility.

      Rick

  • Tad

    Rick,

    If I am a D1 golfer and plan on transferring after this fall semester. Will I have to sit out at all? Are there any requirements I must follow? Not sure of all the rules I must follow if I could get your help that would be great. Thank you in advance.

    Tad

  • Dave

    Rick,

    If I am a D1 basketball player and I get released from the team mid-semester, and plan on transferring after the semester is up, would I still be able to attend the institution for the rest of the semester without fee or reimbursement? Or would I have to leave immediately for no fee to be given?

    Dave

    • Hi Dave,

      This will largely depend upon your circumstances for being released from the team, as well as the athletic department’s policies. There are limited circumstances under which a Division I program can immediately cancel an athletic scholarship in the middle of a term. And, in some cases, athletic department’s may not immediately cancel the scholarship, even though the NCAA rules make it permissible to do so.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Jeff D

    I am currently a D1 baseball player. I am looking to transfer to a junior college after the fall semester and play baseball in the spring. Academically, I have a 3.4GPA and have been a full time student at the D1. My questions are, first can I play baseball at the junior college in the spring and second, are there any restrictions to me transferring to another D1 program in the fall and still be eligible to play the following spring? What about D2 and D3 schools?

    Thanks

    • Hi Jeff,

      These multiple questions about Div. I, II, and III are more appropriate for a private consultation. I’ll follow up with a direct e-mail to you regarding your questions.

      Rick

    • Hi Coach,

      It’s possible for a Div. III athlete to transfer to a Div. I program and play immediately as long as the athlete was not recruited by the Div. III program and has not received an athletic scholarship. As you know, that’s true for a large percentage of Div. III athletes.

      Rick

  • Coach Stevenson

    I have a former female athelte that is now attending a Div I program she is not happy and is interested in transfering closer to home. She is willing to play D II or NAIA, if she transfers before the end of the year would she be eligible to play this season or will she have to sit out the remainder of the year.

    Thank you for your insight I would like to advise her

  • Mike Lindsay

    I started out at a NAIA School out of high school (VCSU DII) I went there for a year… (Fall 2010-Spring 2011) At the end of the year I transferred to a (Fall 2011) (NJCAA DIII) junior college to play basketball…I got dismissed from the team a few days ago…I played in 6 basketball games so far… Another school (NCAA DIII) wants me to join them half way through the year (Spring Semester 2012)….am I able to play right away…or do I have to wait for fall of 2012 to start over and be able to play….

    • Mike,

      As a 4-2-4 transfer with only one semester of attendance at the junior college, and having already played in 6 games this season, it is highly unlikely that you can be immediately eligible at the Div. III school. You’ll have to wait until the Fall of 2012, unless there is some kind of waiver that the Div. III school could file. The chances of that are slim, but you would have to check with their athletic administrators to be sure.

      Rick

  • Kevin

    My daughter plays softball at a junior college. Can she transfer to an NAIA school after Christmas and participate in softball.

    She is a Sophomore this year. She played Junior College softball as a freshman. If she goes to an NAIA school this spring, will she still have three seasons to play?

    • Hi Kevin,

      Yes, your daughter can transfer to an NAIA school after Christmas and participate in softball as long as she is certifed as eligible by the NAIA Eligibility Center. As a junior college transfer, if she didn’t register with the NAIA Elig. Center when she was in high school, she’ll need to do that. You can learn more about that at http://www.playnaia.org.

      She will have three seasons to play.

      Good luck,

      Rick

      • Kevin

        Thanks Rick,

        The Junior College is trying to strong arm my daughter by telling her that since she played in the fall (non-counting games as the real season is in the spring) that she would lose a year of eligibility and only have two years left. In essence, they are telling her that this one school year will count as two years of her eligibility plus the year that she played last year as a freshman and would leave her with only one year of eligibility left after only being in college four semesters after this spring……..which doesn’t make any sense.

        • Kevin,

          I may have been mistaken when I told you that she would have three seasons to play, so if you have a particular NAIA school in mind that your daughter was going to transfer to, I encourage you to contact that school to inquire about her eligibility. (At most NAIA schools, the Faculty Athletic Representative is responsible for certifying eligibility and interpreting the NAIA rules.)

          There is an NAIA rule that states that an athlete cannot be charged with more than one season of competition in an academic year. That’s the rule that I had in mind when I answered your question. However, after more research, that only appllies when an athlete transfers from one NAIA school to another. It is possible for an athlete to be charged with more than one season during an academic year if the athlete was previously competing under a different organization (in your case, NJCAA) and that organization charged a season of competition.

          Rick

  • jeff

    my son is currently playing baseball at a d3 college and is looking to transfer to a juco college to play in the spring, would he lose a year of eligibility by doing this or would he be able to play immediately?

    • Hi Jeff,

      Did your son play in any games or scrimmages against outside competition for his Div. III team this Fall? If so, he probably won’t be eligible at the JUCO this spring. If not, he should be able to transfer with immediate eligibility.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

      • jeff

        he played three innings in their final scrimmage against a junior college down the road from the school. Do you think this would actually effect his eligibility?

        • Jeff,

          According to the NJCAA rules, Fall participation in the sport of baseball at his Div. III school won’t prevent your son from competing for a junior college baseball team this spring as long as he satisfies the NJCAA transfer eligibility rules. Be sure to check those rules with the junior college your son is transferring to. If he earned 12 degree credit hours in the Fall and has a GPA of at least 2.000, he will probably be eligible, but be sure to confirm that with the junior college.

          Good luck!

          Rick

  • jake

    i currently play for an NAIA football team and want to transfer to a NCAA D1 school. would i lose a year even tho im a red shirt freshman?

  • Joel

    I just finished my second year swimming (im a sophomore) at a 4 year D1 school. I want to kow if i can transfer to another D1 school and not have to sit out?

    • Hi Joel,

      Yes, you can transfer to another Div. I school without being required to sit out a year. (This may not be true if you try to transfer within the same conference, however. There are usually intraconference transfer restrictions which might require you to sit out.) Keep in mind that to be eligible immediately upon transfer to another Div. I program, your current school must be able to certify on a transfer information form that you would be eligible if you were returning to your current school instead of transferring.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Tom

    Can a DIII soccer player that transfered in the spring to a DI school play in the DI spring short season ? Permission to contact has been given. The player played in the fall for the DIII team.

    • Hi Tom,

      As long as the athlete met the academic requirements for immediate eligibility (passed at least 6 credit hours in the Fall, etc.) upon transfer, yes, he/she should be eligible to play in the spring season at the Div. I program.

      Rick

  • JOHN

    My son transfered to a D1 baseball school this spring.He had been released from National Letter of Intent from another D1 program in the fall.He has been practicing with the team and dressing for home games. Obviously he is not eligble to play in games due to the transfer. My question is what restrictions are there concerning monies or free uniforms/equipment/etc. that he can receive from the school.Since he is a redshirt transfer and not on scholarship or a medical redshirt, does this have any bearing on what benefits he is eligable to be given.

    • Hi John,

      Frankly, I’m surprised that your son is dressing for home games since he’s not eligible to play. Anyway, he is eligible to receive items necessary for him to practice, such as practice apparel, cleats, bats, glove, etc. However, there is no requirement that the school provide him with this – these are things they are permitted to provide, but not required to provide. The same is true for academic support, such as computer labs, tutors, etc. It largely will depend upon how well the baseball program is funded.

      Rick

  • daniel

    i am a DI football player contemplating transferring to another school, but not playing football. how do i go about leaving my current school/team?

    • Hi Daniel,

      At the end of the school year, you should inform your coach of your plans to transfer to another school, but make it clear to him that you’re not planning to continue playing football. If you are on an athletic scholarship, be aware that if you tell the coach you are quitting the team and quitting football, that your athletic scholarship can be cancelled immediately upon quitting the team. That’s why I advise waiting until the end of the school year to inform your coach about leaving.

      However, if you are not on an athletic scholarship and if you are certain that you are not going to continue to play football, you may want to consider telling your coach before you get too far into spring practice so that the coach can give the practice reps to somebody else at your position. Don’t do this until you are certain of your decision, however, because if you change your mind and do continue to play, you’ll be behind the other guys at your position when fall practice starts up in August.

      Good luck,

      Rick

    • Hi Khari,

      That depends upon whether you met the academic requirements to be a Division I Qualifier when you graduated from high school. If so, it is possible to play Div. I basketball after just one year of junior college enrollment. If not, you would have to graduate from the junior college and earn at least 48 academic credit hours that are transferable to a Div. I program and acceptable toward a specific academic degree at that university.

      Good luck!

      Rick

        • Khari,

          In order to use the GED to be certified by the NCAA Initial Eligibility Center, you must have provided the GED to the Eligibility Center prior to your enrollment at the JUCO where you’re playing basketball.

          Rick

  • Percy

    Hey Mr. Allen,

    I am thinking of attending an NAIA school for a year and playing basketball there. Would it be possible to transfer after a year to a D1 program and not have to sit out a year? Does being recruited by the D1 but not the NAIA change anything?

    -Never transferred before
    -Not recruited by NAIA

    Thanks

    • Hi Percy,

      It would be possible to play basketball for your freshman year at an NAIA school, and then transfer to a Div. I program without sitting out a year, AS LONG AS you were not recruited by the NAIA school and did not receive an athletic scholarship there. There are other requirements you would have to meet, such as being cleared through the NCAA Amateurism Clearinghouse and meeting the academic requirements for a One-Time Transfer Exception, but it is possible.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Carl

    My son plays Baseball for a NJCAA Div III NY Region 3 school

    He was admitted to the school in Fall of 2011

    There was no competition in the Fall of 2011 – play began Spring 2012

    Planning to transfer to NJCAA Div II NY Region 3 school for Fall 2012

    Will there be any sit out time required? He will be transferring with a 3.0 GPA and 37.5 credits

    • Hi Carl,

      Given your son’s GPA and credits earned, there should not be any sit out time required as long as his current school will provide an NJCAA Transfer Waiver Form signed by their AD and by their President (or designee).

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Pete

    Im currently a junior at a NAIA school. I played baseball my first two years here but did not play this year. I am going to graduate after the first semester of next year and was considering applying for the spring semester of next year at a Division I school to finish some prerequirements i need for Pharm School. Will I be eligible to play in that spring semester since I am technically not transferring and I havent played in a year?

    • Hi Pete,

      I apologize for the delay in responding. You may not technically be transferring, but under NCAA rules you will still be considered a transfer. And because you will be making this move at mid-year, the NCAA Div. I rules won’t permit you to be immediately eligible in the Spring 2013 semester. This is because they have a rule that prohibits immediate eligibility for midyear transfers in baseball and basketball, regardless of whether the transfer is a 2-4, 4-4, or for a graduate or professional school.

      Rick

      • Pete

        Rick,
        Thanks for getting back to me. Are there any other options I could possibly take because I do not really want to lose credits by transferring at the beginning of the year. If I appealed it or anything like that do I have any chance of being eligible for Spring 2013 semester? thank you again.
        Pete

        • Pete,

          Were you on a baseball scholarship or were you recruited by your NAIA school? If the answer to both is No, you could transfer to a Div. I program and be immediately eligible if you can take the remaining courses you need and graduate this summer, so that you can transfer to the Div. I university at the start of the academic year.

          Your other option is to have the Div. I program submit a waiver to the NCAA on your behalf and request that the NCAA allow you to be immediately eligible at midyear because you have earned your bachelor’s degree and transferred to the Div. I for an academic program that your NAIA school doesn’t offer. There are no assurances that the NCAA would approve the waiver request. In addition, it would be the choice of the Div. I program whether to submit the waiver, and they may elect not to do so, because they are selective about how often they submit such request. They also weigh the likelihood of a successful waiver before they choose to submit, and – to be quite honest – assess whether the waiver is “worth it.” Because you haven’t played baseball in a year, they would take into consideration how much contribution you can make to the team.

          Good luck!

          Rick

  • Kelso Stevens

    Hey Mr. Allen,
    I am currently a freshman baseball player at a Div-III school in the NESCAC conference. Scholarships are not allowed in the NESCAC, so I am not on any scholarship. I am looking to transfer to a Div-I school next year, but decided this after the application deadline for fall enrollment. If I talk to the coaches and admissions of the school I am looking at, and work out transferring for Spring semester of next year, will I be required to sit out a year? And if so, does this still apply if I took next year off from school and re-applied the following year?

    Thanks,
    Kelso

    • Hi Kelso,

      If you transfer at midyear to a Div. I school, you will not be able to be immediately eligible. Div. I rules prohibit this for baseball and basketball. If you were not recruited to the Div. III school, you could transfer at the end of next academic year to a Div. I school and be immediately eligible. Keep in mind that you need written permission from your current school before you can talk with coaches at a Div. I program.

      Good luck!

      Rick

      • Kelso Stevens

        Thanks so much for your advice.
        One last question. I know this is a longshot, but if I were to take the first semester off from school next year, would that make me eligible for the Spring? or is taking the year off my only option?
        Thanks again,
        Kelso

        • Kelso,

          Taking the first semester off won’t benefit you. If you were not recruited to the Div. III school, you could transfer at the end of next academic year to a Div. I school and be immediately eligible, otherwise you’ll have to sit out the Spring of 2013 from baseball at a Div. I program.

          Rick

  • Ryan

    Can a d1 football program recruit a NAIA football player? Or does the NAIA player need to reach out to the d1 school?

    • Hi Ryan,

      A Div. I football program cannot recruit players from any other four-year college – NAIA, Div. II, or Div. III. The NAIA player needs to obtain written permission from that NAIA school before Div. I coaches will be able to discuss a possible transfer.

      Rick

      • Ryan

        Thanks! Do you think the coach would think any differently of his starting qb getting permission to talk to d-1’s?

        • Hi Ryan,

          Your coach is probably not going to be happy about his starting QB thinking about transferring to a Div. I program rather than being fully committed to his program and being a team leader. Keep in mind it’s quite a step up from NAIA to Div. I. How will you feel a year or two from now going from starting every game, to possibly sitting on the bench the rest of your college career?

          Good luck,

          Rick

  • Alexandra Hernandez

    Hi Rick,

    When you say an athlete needs a written permission from a coach to talk to other schools, is that different to a released paper? I would like to talk to other schools to transfer but I do not want to lose my scholarship before knowing what these other schools have to offer me.

    Alexandra

    • Hi Alexandra,

      When people refer to a “release” it could mean a couple of different things. It could mean a release from an athlete’s commitment to the National Letter of Intent. Or, it could mean a release to talk to other schools, which would be the same thing as “permission to contact” coaches at other schools.

      If you are concerned about losing your scholarship, you should wait to request permission to talk to other schools until you’ve signed your scholarship renewal for next year. However, if you wait until then to talk to other schools, those other schools may not have any scholarships remaining to provide you.

      So, you’re in a difficult spot. Do you ask for permission to talk to other schools now, knowing that the coach may choose to not renew my scholarship for next year, or do I wait until I’ve signed my scholarship renewal, and then ask to contact other programs. Only you can make that decision.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • luis ramos

    My son is currently a DIV I football player but there is a chance that he may become ineligible due to his grades and his coach has told him that he will not be back if becomes ineligible, what options does my son have if he becomes ineligible due to grades.
    Will he have to go the JUCO route or is there another option. Thanks.

    Luis

    Luis

    • Hi Luis,

      You don’t mention what year of college enrollment your son is in. If he’s a freshman or sophomore and has only used one year of eligibility, then JUCO may be his best option. Otherwise he can transfer to another Div. I or a Div. II school, but he will not be able to be eligible until he has served a year in residence. Also, since he won’t be eligible in his first year at the next school, it is unlikely that the next school will give him an athletic scholarship.

      Rick

      • Luis

        Thank you Rick, I appreciate your reply, he is actually a freshman, and he did play as a true freshman last year.

        Luis

  • Zach Lagier

    Rick,

    i was recruited and given a scholarship by division II school to play football after highschool and my freshman year i decided to red-shirt. After my freshman redshirt year i left that school interested in playing at a division I school. i have been attending a community college for one semester(spring) and if i wanted to attend a JUCO this fall for a season/semester would i be eligable to transfer to a div. I school and walk-on in the spring to play football?
    thank you.

    Zach

    • Zach,

      It’s not clear to me from your e-mail what you were doing last Fall. I don’t know if you were at a Div. I school, a JUCO, or not attending anywhere. Regardless of that, you would have to graduate from the JUCO and complete an average of at least 12 credit hours of transferable-degree credit for each semester of full-time enrollment at the JUCO. The hours must be transferable toward a degree at the college that you choose to transfer to. You would also have to be meeting the percentage of degree requirements at your new school based on the number of terms in which you’ve been enrolled in college as a full-time student if you’ll be entering your 3rd year of college – 40% completed by start of year 3.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Jerry

    My son played baseball and just finished his sophmore year at a JUCO and is not an NCAA Eligibility Center Qualifier and has not completed his Associates degree. I know he is not eligible to play DI or DII until he completes his Associates. Can he complete his Associates degree in the the fall of 2012 and be a mid-year transfer to a DII school and play baseball in the spring of 2013? Or would he have to sit out a year.

    • Jerry,

      Your son can be immediately eligible if he transfers to a Div. II school at midyear following graduation from the JUCO. In addition, Div. II rules provide another option that does not require him to earn his Associates degree, so he may be able to transfer for this Fall to a Div. II program.

      His other option is that he must complete an average of 12 credit hours per term of full-time enrollment that are acceptable for transferable degree credit to the Div. II school he will be attending. He also must have at least a 2.000 minimum GPA.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Jesus Alvarez

    Hi, i hope you ok, please help me, im a international student im talking with a baseball coach from a community college and he told me that he can give me only a year of baseball schoolarship because i will be 21 im january 2012 and i only can play until age 21 in njcaa because Ncaa putted that rule now? So i will take a english course for the first semester and then in my 2nd semester and 1 season i will study physical therapy, my question is can i transfer to ncaa or naia college after my first physical therapy semester and my first season? Please help me! Jesus_alvarez_17@hotmail.com

    All my best

    Thanks

    • Hi Jesus,

      Your best bet would be to transfer to an NAIA school after the community college. Even if you’re not immediately eligible to play upon transfer, you should only have to sit out one semester before being eligible to play.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Robert emerson

    If I attend a D1 aa for football right out of high school and I was redshirted at the end of my redshirt year i want to transfer to d1 a would i have to sit out a year?

    • Hi Robert,

      As long as you were not recruited to the Div. I-AA (FCS) school (see the post on our website with the definition of a recruited athlete), you could transfer to a Div. I-A (FBS) program and be immediately eligible as long as you met the academic requirements at the FBS program. If you are recruited to the FCS program, you would have to sit out in your first year of attendance at any FBS program.

      Good luck!

      Rick

      • Robert emerson

        For the year I have to sit out can I attend a comunity college then transfer there? And is a full 2 semesters or just the season

        • Robert,

          You must be enrolled at the school you plan to compete for when serving your “sit out” year. The official term is “year in residence” and you have to be enrolled there as a full-time student for one full academic year to satisfy the “year in residence” requirement before you can be eligible for competition.

          Rick

          • Robert emerson

            Would I be allowed to practice with the team during my year of “sit out”.

          • Robert,

            Some schools have limits on the roster size that may be caused by limited budgets or gender equity concerns, but from the standpoint of NCAA rules, yes, you would be permitted to practice with the team during your year in residency.

            Rick

  • Luke Untermann

    If I am enrolled at a div 2 school for football but i have only been there for this past spring semester, will i still have to sit out a football season if I transfer to a div 1aa school in the fall? I only participated in spring football camp at my prior school and was not on the team in the fall. Please let me know

    • Hi Luke,

      Your question is confusing to me because of the way you have worded it. Assuming that the Div. II school is the only college you have attended so far, you will have to serve an academic year in residence during which you won’t be eligible for competition if you transfer to a Div. I-AA (Div. I Football Championship Subdivision) program. However, you can be exempt from that rule if you were not recruited to the Div. II school and you meet the academic requirements of the One-Time Transfer Exception.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • John

    My son received a baseball award for an NAIA school in 2011/2012 season as a freshman and played the season.
    He will now be entering his sophomore year this August but the cost of attendance for his current college may be too much to afford due to parent income changes for medical reasons. If he decides to transfer to another school D1/D2/D3 or NAIA is he eligible to play baseball in the 2012/2013 year for any of those schools? In addition, the original contract is dated valid until June 2012 so does that mean he can converse with other coaches after June, 2012 and not violate any of the rules?

    • Hi John,

      Your son will need written permission from his current school before coaches at other schools will talk with him about a possible transfer, whether this occurs before or after June. He could be eligible to play in 2012-13 if he transfers to a school at any level other than NCAA Div. I, as long as he meets the academic requirements for immediate eligibility upon transfer.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • P16

    If my son finished high school with a core gpa of 1.92, to have freshman eligibility in DII immediately in the fall what does he have to do?

    • P16,

      To have freshman eligibility as a Div. II Qualifier, your son will need to retake one of his core courses this summer that he did not do well in and achieve a higher grade that will raise his core GPA to 2.00. Before he does that, you should recalculate his GPA to see if one course retaken will even raise his GPA enough to reach 2.00. I believe he is only allowed to retake one course, and if the desired grade in that course won’t be enough to raise his core GPA to 2.00, then it won’t be enough to help him attain the desired outcome. You can contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com for further information.

      Rick

  • Michael Ingram Jr.

    Hey , I am just enrolled into a JUCO and I start school summer semester monday, I am a member of the football team, and I would like to know would I be able to earn a scholarship from D1,D2, or NAIA schools after just my first year . (Summer,Fall,and Spring semesters)

      • Michael Ingram Jr.

        Yes sir , Im registered with NCAA eligibility and im eligible for a scholarship from all schools. D1(FBS),D1(FCS),D2 etc.

        • Michael,

          In that case, yes, you would be eligible to earn a scholarship after one year at a JUCO as long as you do well academically, and earn academic credits that will be transferable to a Div. I, II, or NAIA program.

          Good luck!

          Rick

  • J ay Gawronski

    Son playing at D3 School and is in his last year of eligibility. He will graduate in December. Wants to go onto Master Degree and current D3 school does not offer a Graduate Program. The Graduate Program he is applying to is D1 Institution can he play in Spring at D1 school? Would the NCAA allow exemptions/waiver and based on his circumstances he has a case.

  • Will

    Hey Rick,

    If I play a season of DII University Soccer this upcoming Fall, then after the season is over receive permission to talk to other Coaches, and by next year end up at a DI University, will I have to sit out a year since I am coming from a DII University?
    Thanks

    • Hi Will,

      As long as your current school will grant you a release, and you satisfy the academic requirements for immediate eligibility at the Div. I school, you won’t have to sit out a year.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Lynn

    Hi,
    My daughter runs track and received a release from her current d1 school to attend another D1school. She was offered a full scholarship contingent on having enough credits to be eligible to compete. She redshirted her freshman year and just completed her sophomore year, however, all of her credits aren’t transferring because she has several C-‘s. She’s attending summer school but will still be some credits shy of the 51 they’re saying she needs. Since track is a spring sport, can she compete as long as she has the credits by end of fall term?

    • Hi Lynn,

      The simple answer to your question is No. The reason is that any athlete who transfers from any four-year school to a Div. I school has to serve a year in residence before being eligible to compete UNLESS they satisfy one of the transfer exceptions. Since your daughter apparently won’t satisfy the One-Time Transfer Exception based on what the school is telling her, then she would have to serve a complete year of residence before being eligible for competition. Contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com if you have additional questions.

      Rick

  • Elizabeth

    Hi,
    My son is a D1 soccer player and is considering transferring to another D1 school. Since he is late in applying, he is considering taking first semester off of school and spending time in Europe to study (not an official study abroad), and then trying to join a D1 school in the Spring. Would his One Time Transfer Exception be impacted by that decision? Would the bar be higher for the number of units he would be required to have completed (instead of 40% would it then include the semester he is not enrolled in school?). He would definitely meet the one time transfer requirements if he were to go directly to another program in the upcoming Fall term, but I am not sure what happens if he decides not to attend school for the Fall semester.

    • Elizabeth

      Sorry, to clarify, he would be a redshirt Sophomore in Fall 2012, but would be considering not attending school in the Fall, and then joining a new school in Spring 2013.

      • Hi Elizabeth,

        The main thing to keep in mind is that the vast majority of European colleges (most colleges anywhere other than the US) don’t distinguish between full-time and part-time enrollment. Therefore, if your son takes classes from a college in Europe, he would likely be considered a 4-4-4 transfer and not be eligible for the One-Time Transfer Exception. So, it is probably better that he not attend school in the Fall, or that he find out if there are any colleges in Europe that have a specific “part-time student” status.

        The other thing to keep in mind, and which you may already know, is that NCAA Div. I has the “five-year clock” rule. An athlete’s “five-year clock” begins with their initial full-time collegiate enrollment, and the only reasons for stopping or pausing that five-year clock are a recognized church mnission (such as is common with Mormons) or military service. Your son’s five-year clock will continue if he takes a semester off from attending college. He may want to consider Div. II, since they follow the “ten-semester rule” and only count the terms of full-time enrollment toward the ten semester limit. Contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com if you have additional questions.

        Rick

  • Ken

    Hi Rick,
    My son swims D-I and is scheduled to graduate three semesters early in December. He currently has two years of swimming eligibility remaining. After graduating in December with his bachelor’s degree, he is considering transferring to another D-I school for post graduate studies. If he swims this fall semester and graduates, can he swim immediately upon transfer to the new school for the spring semester?

    If so, would he exhaust only one year of eligibility for one swim season split between two schools?

    • Hi Ken,

      The answers to your questions will depend upon a number of different circumstances, including your son’s scholarship situation, whether his current school will give him a release, and how the school establishes its swim schedule. I’ll follow up with a private e-mail to you.

      Rick

  • Brad

    Hi.
    I am playing soccer for an NAIA school however it is way to small for me. Is it looked down upon to transfer at the end of the fall semester? I have a scholarship but was recruited previously by the school I desire to be at and could walk on to the team. I made a mistake coming to the one I am at and care alot about the team however the school is not right for me. What should I do?

    • Hi Brad,

      It would be looked down upon if you were to quit the team or school now and not complete the season. Other coaches you might want to play for in the future could also question your commitment if you did that.

      However, there is nothing wrong (at least in terms of the rules, the head coach may not agree) with transferring at the end of the semester.

      Good luck!

      Rick

      • Brad

        Thank you. Also if I was to transfer at semester it would be to a Division II school. How would that affect my eligibility for next years team?

        • Brad,

          It would be possible to be eligible for next year’s team if your NAIA school grants you a release and if you meet the academic qualifications for a transfer to Div. II.

          Rick

  • Anna

    Hi,
    In 2007, I played NAIA soccer for 1 year in college, the quit and for personal reasons ended up leaving the school in 2009. In the fall of 2012 I will be attending another university, and am wondering if because I played 1 year of college soccer 5 years ago if I am ineligible to try out for the div 1 rowing team at my new school.

    • Hi Anna,

      Unfortunately, your eligibility has expired since you are at a Div. I school. It doesn’t matter whether you played that one season of soccer five years ago. What matters is the fact that NCAA Div. I has a “five-year clock” during which athletes can use their four seasons of eligibility. Your “clock” expired at the end of last year.

      If you truly want to compete in rowing or some other sport, you may want to consider an NCAA Div. II, III, or NAIA school, because they use a “10-semester rule” and only count the semesters during which you are enrolled as a full-time student. If you didn’t attend school as a full-time student during the last 3 years, you would have 3 years of eligibility remaining in those divisions. Contact me directly at Rick@informedathlete.com if you have additional questions.

      Rick

  • MissMoorer

    My son Transferred from a D1 football team to a D2 football team in order to get more playing time at the D2 school, which he did. But unfortunately he tore his ACL 2 weeks before the first game and was out all last season(medical red-shirt). While he was out they fired the coaching staff and bought in new coaches. The new new coach decided that he was not going to renew my son’s scholarship for this year. If he stays there and tranfers in Jan, how does this effect his years left of eligibilty to play. Can he play right away at another division 2 school, and can he use the two year no play exception rule to play immediately in division 1? and also how does his medical redshirt play into this situation; and do he need permission to contact from this school since they did not renew the scholarship

    • MissMoorer,

      I apologize for not being able to return your phone call today. I was in meetings from 8 this morning through a dinner with clients tonight that went until 9:30. I will be in meetings again all day tomorrow until about 5 Eastern time.

      If your son transfers again to another Div. II school, he’ll have to sit out one year. The two-year nonparticipation rule will only benefit him if he chooses to not participate in any practice activities this year and waits until 2 years since his ACL injury before he participates in any practice sessions.

      I’ll try to contact you tomorrow evening after my meetings are concluded to discuss your other questions.

      Rick

  • Carlos

    Dear Rick,

    I want to transfer to a Div. 1 school in January I’m a baseball player from a Div. 3 school, I qualify for one of the exception non-recruited player. Can I play right away in spring? there’s any exception or waiver for this bylaw 14.5.5.5 Baseball and Basketball — Midyear Enrollee.?

    Thank you

    Carlos

    • Hi Carlos,

      It would be very difficult to get a waiver of the rule that prohibits a Div. I midyear baseball transfer from being immediately eligible. You would have to be able to demonstrate a very thorough, legitimate, reason other than athletics that you had to transfer to a Div. I school at midyear, rather than waiting until next Fall, or choosing another Div. III, or a Div. II school.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Ashley

    I am transferring from a 4 year college (in which I signed an NLI) to a 4 year college back home, but only after the first semester. I do not wish to compete at this other school (it doesn’t even have the sport I play). I assume that I will have to forefit my athletic scholarship money as I won’t be at this school for the main race season in the spring. Does this mean that I must forefit my academic scholarship that is through the school itself as well? Please Help!

    • Hi Ashley,

      It’s most likely that your scholarships will be prorated for the time that you are enrolled and attending, and that you will receive both your athletic and your academic scholarships for this Fall semester while you are in attendance as a full-time student. However, you obviously won’t receive them for the Spring semester if you won’t be enrolled.

      Rick

  • Tyler

    I am currently a red-shirted freshman playing dII NCAA football, but i don’t like the school i am at and my dad is very sick so i am wanting to transfer to a NAIA school closer to home. I received an athletic scholarship to attend to the dII school i am currently at. If possible i want to come home mid-term either to attend the NAIA school immediately or wait until the fall. Will i be eligible for football at the NAIA school? And how will transfering affect my scholarship to the dII school? My fear is i will have to end up paying for my first semester since i transfered. Any advice? Im at a loss here..

    • Hi Tyler,

      You should not have to repay any of your scholarship for the first semester if you leave this school at midyear. If your Div. II school will grant you a release, and if they will be able to certify that you would be eligible if you were staying at their school rather than transferring, you should be able to be immediately eligible at an NAIA school.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Boe

    My son plays D-2 football. He enrolled early at the university to be involved in spring ball. He has played as as a true freshmen and as a true sophmore. He would like to transfer to a D-1 AA program after the season to particapate in the D-1 spring ball to get head start on learning the offense. Couple of questions 1 He needs to get permission to contact and a release? With that said can the D-2 deny his release? They will not be happy because he has started for them. His goal is to transfer use his redshirt year which he hasnt used as the year he has to sit out and will have two years of playing time. Does this sound right?

    • Hi Boe,

      Yes, your son needs to get permission in order to talk with other schools. His school can deny this request, but if they do he can appeal that decision, (if he has good grounds for an appeal). He will need to sit out his first year at a Div. I program (whether A or AA).

      Rick

  • Angel

    Hello Rick,
    I am currently a freshman playing D1 Soccer. And well I can honestly say that I am not really happy with the soccer and let alone the distance from home is really affecting my morale on a physical and emotional stance. I’m originally from California but I left to the East coast for college. I really don’t see myself at this school for 4 years. I was wondering if you know what would be the best option in looking for a transfer. Would I have a better chance in being eligible to playing right away if I looked to transfer mid-year or at the end of the school year? Also, just out of curiosity does this break any NCAA rule that could affect my scholarship or eligibility ?

    • Hi Angel,

      If you signed a National Letter of Intent with your school, you have committed to attend that school for one full academic year in exchange for your athletic scholarship. If you transfer at midyear, you will have eligibility penalties unless your school will grant you a complete release from your NLI commitment. That will obviously be a big factor in whether you can transfer at midyear, or whether you complete the academic year at your current school.

      Also, as you may already know, you must request written permission from your current school before you can talk with other schools about a possible transfer. If you request permission before the end of your season, it will probably affect your playing time.

      Rick

      • Angel

        Thank you so much for the much needed information Rick.

        Now in regards to getting permission from my school, Can I theoretically get that permission within next month to use an example if I wish to get transferred mid year?

        Will I be able to receive athletics scholarships or any types of financial aid from the schools that I talk about possibly transferring to whether it be mid-year or end of the year?

        • Angel,

          Yes, you can request that permission any time you’re prepared to do so. It will be possible to get a scholarship from the next school you transfer to, but that will be totally up to the school’s policies and whether they have any athletic scholarship money available at that time.

          Rick

  • Wayne

    Baseball player transfer D1 to D1.
    If a player plays 1 season and then transfers and sits for a year then upon return does that player have 3 years eligibility remaining or 2.

  • Aaron

    Hello,
    I have a question my son originally signed an NLI with a D1 but they dropped him because his jc would not post his A.A in time now he is on scholarship at a D2 he played 2 games and is now a medical redshirt. if he transfers during the spring and completes 24 units before the season begins will he be eligible to play that following year. To add to this he is already accepted at the other college an is taking online classes right now hes taking 6. When i called the ncaa the rep told me the reason athletes must sit out is because they must complete a full acedemic year i.e two full time semseters. If he does this before fall could he play. Let me know if the question i am asking isnt clear.

    thank you

  • JP Grako

    Hey Rick,

    I am a qualifier for Division 2, not division 1 because of my 5 year clock being up. If a school is in the process of transferring to Divison 1aa from Division 2, what are the eligibility requirements for that school? Do they remain division 2 until the transition is completed? Thank you!

  • Allen

    Hi, I’m a out of state student that walked-on to a D1 track and field team last year and before that I was at a JUCO. I had a great season last year but didn’t get a Scholarship for this upcoming school year which is my last year. My bills for the year our already crazy and as of right now I wont be able to come back for next semester which is when the season starts do to the costs of school. So my question to you is can I transfer to another school and be able to Throw without having to wait because this is my last year.

    • Hi Allen,

      Yes, you can transfer to another school at mid-year and be immediately eligible for the spring semester as long as your current school will be able to say – at the time that you transfer – that you would have been eligible if you were returning rather than transferring. For more details on the transfer rules and process, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Ty

    Say I am at a four year University school and am a athletic and academic sophmore who transferred from a juco after freshman year. I would be planning to play in the spring but am Worried I will be academically ineligable, say I wanted to play the spring of sophmore year at the Juco I transferred out of. Could this be done without having to sit out a year?

  • Angel

    Hello Rick,

    I was wondering if I could contact another school about my interest in transferring to that institution before getting permission from my current school’s athletic director? I read in an article that it says the school may not contact me or my parents about transferring until I get written permission but I may contact them.

    • Hi Angel,

      Yes, you may, but if that school then contacts your current coach before you have spoken to him to let him know of your intentions, it could negatively affect your relationship with him, and/or your playing time.

      Rick

  • Jegonz

    Hi Rick:
    My son is presently attending a D-1 college this fall (1ST year Junior transfer, 2-4) and is considering transferring to another D-1 College next spring.
    My son graduated from a Junior College in the spring 2012 and transferred to his current D-1 College in the Fall 2012. He was certified by the D-1 college compliance AD officer to be eligible to play baseball immediately in the Fall of 2012. My son played 2 years at the Junior College and has 3 year left in eligibility clock. He was considered as a non-qualifier (falling 1 class short) for D-1 College but a qualifier for D-2 College upon registering with the NCAA in 2010.

    Are there exception to the One-time transfer requirements? According to NCAA you must be a qualifier to be use the One-time transfer exception during the first year after they enroll at the new school. Does this applies since my son transferred from a junior college to the D-1 school he in certified to play now instead of attending a D-1 school initially from high school?

    What is his eligibility status if he were to transfer to another D1 College this upcoming 2013 spring or fall 2013 given the following facts:

    1. Never attended another 4-year college previously
    2. Transferred from Junior College to his first D1-College in the fall 2012
    3. Certified by his present D-1 College Compliance AD office to be eligible to play this Fall 2012
    4. He had not transferred previously from a one four-year school
    5. He was not recruited and never received athletically related aid from his present D-1 College.
    6. His is a walk-on and not a player at the present D1 College baseball team
    7. He has 2 years of eligibility with 3 years remaining on his clock
    8. He has received written permission from the current D-1 College to contact other colleges.

    Please help.

    • Hi Jess,

      Based on what you’ve stated, it is possible for your son to be immediately eligible at another Div. I school without sitting out a year, but he could not be eligible for Spring 2013, as Div. I does not allow mid-year baseball transfers to be immediately eligible. If you’d like more details on the transfer rules, you can contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Beth

    Hey Rick,
    My son was a standout high school player but due to the size of our school, lack of coaching help was not heavily recruited. He got a preferred walkon at a D1 school and has been there since June. He loves the football but really not loving the school. How do we “shop ” around a stand out scout team player with no films and stay in compliance? WE are lost and he is miserable would like to transfer after football season. Please help.

    • Hi Beth,

      As you may know, coaches at other NCAA schools can’t talk with your son about a possible transfer until he has written permission from his current school. He probably won’t want to request that permission until the end of the season. You may want to contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com to discuss his options and strategy for transfer.

      Rick

  • Angel

    Hi Rick,

    Just as a follow up on my last question, Is it possible to call a coach at a university in order to introduce yourself to the coaches and to let them know you’ll be contacting them more often as soon as the season is over because of your interest in transfering? Could you ask them to not notify the coaches at the current school in order to not endanger any playing time?

    • Hi Angel,

      You can do that, but you would have to trust them that they won’t call your current coaches to ask about your ability and your conduct on and off the field. I can tell you that I”ve heard within the last couple of months of two situations in which Div. III coaches did just that even though they have a specific rule that says they’re not supposed to contact the athlete’s school until 30 days have passed from the first contact.

      Rick

  • Kim

    Hi Rick,
    I am at a Div. 1 AA school and would like to transfer to a Div. 1 A school at semester. I’m a freshman on the track team and am not sure what all I need to do. I know I need to get permission to talk to another school, but if I do so now that would probably ruin my coach’s and I’s relationship. When is the best time for me to do this? Also, I am on scholarship, will I be stripped of my scholarship for this semester? I havent competed yet, but I was put on the roster for a cross-country meet, does this mean I will have to sit out once I am transferred?

    • Hi Kim,

      You are correct – requesting permission to speak to another school before the end of your season could ruin your relationship with the coach.

      You’re a freshman on scholarship. Did you sign a National Letter of Intent with your school? If so, you’ll also need a release from your NLI commitment if you don’t attend your school for one full academic year. You may want to check out http://www.national-letter.org, and review the FAQ’s on the right side of the page. If you want further details, you can contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Gabby

    Hi Rick,
    My son is a non-recruited preferred walk-on football player at a D1 school. He is on the scout team but is not play in the games. He is in his first semester of his freshman year. Football is his passion and he wants to transfer and get a scholarship at a school closer to home. How do we get him noticed by other teams/coaches if he only has his high school and all-star game film while staying within the NCAA rules? He is a very talented athlete and we really want to see him get a chance to play at school on a scholarship. How is it possible for him to transfer and obtain a scholarship at the end of his first semester? Any advice you can provide would be very much appreciated.
    Sincerely,
    Rhonda

    • Hi Rhonda,

      First off, your son needs written permission from his current school before coaches at other schools can talk with him about a possible transfer. Also, it will be hard for him to obtain a scholarship for the second semester, as most of them have already been awarded for the full year.

      Your best opportunity to get him noticed is to get the help of a former coach or instructor who will be supportive and contact schools on his behalf. Find a school that really wants him, no matter what level it is. Many athletes dream of Div. I, but in reality, most just want to get on the field and play, even if it’s at a lower level.

      Rick

  • Liv

    Hi! I am a freshman swimmer at a D1 school. I love the swimming, but not so much the school. I was thinking of transferring next year, probably to another D1 school, at which I may or may not be fast enough to be on the team. My current school doesn’t offer swimming scholarships, if that’s important, but I was just wondering if a) I would have to sit out a year/semester, and b) at what point should I tell my coach?

    • Hi Liv,

      You can ask your coach for permission to talk with other coaches in the middle of your season, but it may hurt your playing time, and or your relationship with your coach. If your school will release you, and you meet the academic requirements for the One-Time Transfer Exception, you would not have to sit out a year.

      Rick

  • Nate

    Hi Rick,

    I’m am currently a D1 baseball player and am looking to transfer to a junior college. We just finished fall ball and I did play in a couple of scrimmages this fall. I was wondering if I was to transfer after the fall semester would I still be eligible to play in the spring semester at the juco?

    Thanks,
    Nate

    • Hi Nate,

      As long as you earn 12 credit hours this Fall with at least a 2.00 GPA, you should be eligible to play in the Spring at the JUCO. But check with them to make sure that you won’t end up being charged with two seasons of eligibility for playing in the Fall at one school, and playing in the Spring at another.

      Rick

  • Adam

    Hi Rick,

    I play football at a D3 college right now and i am looking to transfer to a higher level. I was wondering if i transfer to a FCS school such as the University of New Hampshire would i lose a year of eligibility? Or would i just have to sit out a year.

    Thanks,
    Adam

    • Hi Adam,

      If you were recruited to the Div. III school, you will have to sit out a year if you transfer to a Div. I program. (You may want to review the blog on our website titled “NCAA Rules: Definition of a Recruited Athlete.”) You would then have three years of eligibility remaining.

      If you weren’t recruited, you can transfer and have the chance to be eligible right away at a Div. I school.

      Rick

    • Hi Wayne,

      The actual letter or e-mail that is sent to another school will be issued by the compliance office of the athletic department, but it will be based on the recommendation of the coach.

      Rick

  • Martin Tate

    Rick,
    My son is currently a walk on basketball player at a D2 school. He wants to transfer after the first semester to an NAIA school in our home town. What are the rules on this?

    Thanks-
    Martin

    • Hi Martin,

      As long as he passes 12 credit hours with at least a 2.00 GPA this semester, he should be able to be eligible at the NAIA school.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • tommy

    I am a division 2 basketball player transfering at semester I played in the pre seasoning game in Canada. I read that since this was a foreign tour I won’t loose my year of eligibility since it was not in the US and it was a pre seasoning game not even on are schedule.

    • Hi Tommy,

      According to the Div. II Manual, your participation in the foreign tour game will count as a season of eligibility used. The types of games that are excluded are participation in an alumni game, fundraising game, or “celebrity sports activity.”

      Rick

  • Shane

    I play D3 soccer and have applied to transfer in the spring to a D1 school.
    Now that my season has ended should I email the coach of the school?
    Or should I wait until my admission letter comes back?

    • Hi Shane,

      You should start by talking to your coach to request permission to talk to the coach at the Div. I school. If you don’t do that, and then contact the Div. I coach, he may then contact your current coach for background info on you, and coaches don’t like to be caught off-guard like that.

      Rick

  • M

    Rick,

    I have played in 2 games and received a scholarship to play basketball at the NAIA school that I am currently attending. Unfortunately, I do not want to be here and would like to transfer after this fall semester is over to a CC to finish my prerequisites. Would this be possible since since I don’t want to play basketball for the rest of the year?

    Thanks

    M

      • M

        Great! What about my scholarship for first semester though? I have already paid my balance and the scholarship was applied. Will I have to pay back first semester’s scholarship?

        Thanks!

        M

        • M,

          If you don’t quit the team and continue as a member of the team through the end of the semester, participating in all games, practices, workouts, etc. that they ask you to, you should not have to pay back your scholarship for this semester. If you quit before the end of the semester, then it is possible that the school might seek payback.

          Rick

  • M

    Ok, I am planning on continuing as a member of the team until the end of the semester.

    Thank you for your help! I really appreciate it!

    M

  • Joel

    My daughter is a freshman softball player. She is currently at a D1 school but NOT playing ANY sport and was never recruited by the school she is currently at. We have learned through a travelball coach that another D1 school she was originally interested in might have an opening and want her to play. Can she transfer mid year and would she be eligibile to play in the spring. ??

    Thanks
    Joel

    • Hi Joel,

      As long as your daughter registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center and was certified as a Qualifier for Div. I, she can transfer at midyear and be eligible this spring as long as she’s in good academic standing when she leaves her current school. Be aware that my answer addresses the NCAA rules, but you will also want to check out the Admission requirements for that Div. I school.

      Good luck to your daughter!

      Rick

  • Joel

    Thanks so much for your response. She has great grades/test scores and was actually accepted last spring to this school but since at the time hadn’t been offered she opted to stay in state. I think the only transfer application hassle left at this point is that the regular deadline date has past, but I’m hoping that can be overcome.

    thanks again

    Joel

  • Glen

    Hey Rick,

    Great site!! My question is for my son. He is currently attending a D2 school on scholarship for Baseball. He is thinking about moving closer to home and attending an NAIA school during the Holiday break. The NAIA coach initially recruited him and we are sure would welcome him but would he be elegible to play in the spring??

    Thanks,
    Glen

    • Hi Glen,

      If your son’s Div. II school will release him, and if he earns at least 12 transferable credit hours with at least a 2.00 GPA this term, he should be able to be eligible in the Spring.

      Rick

  • Rob

    Hey Rick,
    I am a sophomore at a D3 school in the middle of basketball season and have barely played to this point. Can I transfer to another 4 year school and sit out the spring semester and maintain my 3 year eligibility still? Or is the rule if I have played any amount of minutes than my eligibility for that year has been used?

    • Hi Rob,

      If you have played any amount of minutes against “outside competition” (basically anything other than intrasquad scrimmages), you have used a season of eligibility.

      Rick

  • Keya

    Hello I’m Keya & I wanted to know about transferring for softball. I played in 2011 at a d3 college didn’t like it so I transferred to a d1 college but I didn’t play. Now I’m thinking about transferring to another d1 in the spring. I wanted to know about the sitting out a year. Would this spring & the fall of 2013 count as my academic year sitting out?

  • Torreon Woods

    I am a freshman, 1st semester going to an NAIA school, and is looking to transfer. Do I need a certain number of credit hours to transfer to NCAA, as I have schools wanting me to go there Spring semester, just in time for school.

    • Hi Torreon,

      If you have schools recruiting you for the Spring semester then I suggest you ask them what you need to achieve to be eligible to transfer. I suggest this because the schools may have Admission requirements that are separate from the NCAA transfer rules I would tell you about.

      Rick

  • James Taylor

    My son has attended junior college for 2 years then took off school in the fall of 2012. Can he attend a division 3 college for the spring semester and play baseball?

    • Hi James,

      Your son can do this if he was in good standing academically, and was eligible at the time that he withdrew from the JUCO. In other words, if he had another season of eligibility available to him at the JUCO would he have been academically eligible to compete.

      Rick

      • James Taylor

        Thanks. Just to add on to that. What if my son was in rolled in fall classes then withdrew have way through the semester. Would he still be able to come back in the spring and play baseball?

        • James,

          If your son was enrolled in fall classes as a full-time student, and then withdrew halfway through the term earning a 0.00 GPA, it will be unlikely that he can play in the Spring.

          Rick

          • James Taylor

            We were under the impression that withdrawing from all courses does not effect his gpa and that it would be like he never even attended school in the fall

          • James,

            His GPA will depend upon the school’s policies. However, for NCAA purposes, it will be considered as a semester of enrollment since he was full-time prior to withdrawing from classes and he may be held accountable for 12 hours of academic credit.

            Rick

  • Joe Beaulac

    Rick,

    Enjoy the site and you’ve been very helpful in the past answering my questions. Have another few more for you.

    My son attended a D1 school in the fall. Was not recruited to play baseball and he did not participate in any way with the baseball program. He is recovering from Tommy John surgery.

    He decided to transfer to another D1 school that saw him pitch prior to his surgery. He starts at the new school in February 2013 which is also the 12 month anniversary of his surgery. I have 2 questions:

    1) Does he have to sit out at all because of the transfer? I’m assuming no since he wasn’t recruit by either school nor did he participate.

    2) He’s hoping to throw a bullpen in January for the coaches of the new school. If for some reason they like him and they have a spot on their roster to add him, could he join the team? If a spot is available to redshirt him is that a possibility too?

    Thanks!

  • sebastian

    Hi Rick,
    I have a freshman who plays basketball at a JUCO one county over from where we live. Can she transfer during winter break to our local JUCO and be eligable to play immediatley?

  • Marty

    Rick…
    I have a freshman attending a D2 school with a baseball scholarship. After fall semester he is extremely unhappy and would like to transfer into a JUCO for spring. He signed an NLI with the school and I was wondering what impact it would have on him if he did not play in the spring when season starts. Would he be eligible to play at JUCO immediately? Would he be responsible to pay back scholarship for Fall semester?

  • Byron

    Rick,

    My son is a qualifier academically.

    My son was given a full basketball scholarship to redshirt at a juco in New Mexico for 2012-13 season. Now the coach asked him to play with only 14 of 30+ games remaining. My son doesn’t want to give up a whole year to play 14 games, so now the coach says he will pull his scholarship if he doesn’t play. The new semester starts tomorrow and we can’t afford to have him stay at the school. Question – If he transfers to another juco and continues his redshirt year, will he be able to play at a D1 for the 2013-14 and not be penalized for transfering mid season? He has a scholarship to play D1 ball next season and we would like him to use all 4 years there.

    • Hi Byron,

      Your son can transfer to another JUCO for the Spring term, and be eligible next Fall at a Div. I school as long as he has a cumulative GPA of at least 2.500 at the end of the academic year, and earns at least 12 hours of transferable degree credit for each of these JUCO semesters (or has an average of 12 transferable credits over the two terms).

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

        • Byron,

          Sounds like he’s in a good position academically. Just be sure that the courses are transferable to the Div. I school. If your son hasn’t done so already, he should be communicating with the coaches and athletic academic advisors and sharing his Fall term transcript with them to be sure there’s nothing being overlooked.

          Rick

  • Stephanie

    I am a Junior basketball player at D2 school. They have released me from my scholarship after the fall semester. Though I played in the fall, is there anyway to get that eligibility back? Also, I am not academically eligible for the Spring. Can I still transfer to a D3 school and practice/go to classes? Do I need a permission to contact even though I was released?

    Thanks!
    Stephanie

    • Stephanie,

      Yes, you still need permission to contact. If you are healthy and otherwise able to play (except for the academic issue), you can’t get this year of eligibility back. You can transfer to a Div. III school and practice, but would not be eligible to play until January 2014.

      Rick

  • terri

    Rick,
    My son enrolled at a DII in another state mid year that started last week. He was recently contacted by the school in state that he wanted to attend which begins in a couple of weeks. He wants to know what are his options. He is receiving a scholarship from the out of state school but it is not too late to drop classes without a penalty.

    • Terri,

      If your son has started attending classes at the Div. II school while registered as a full-time student, he should stay where he is for at least this semester. This is because if he withdraws now and enrolls at another NCAA school for the spring, he’ll be considered a transfer student and would not be eligible in his first year at the next school because he wouldn’t qualify for the One-Time Transfer Exception.

      Rick

  • Nina

    Hi Rick,

    I enjoy reading your blog, it is very helpful.
    I went to play at a d3 school instead of d2 or d1, and I’m not enjoying the athletic experience. The academics however, are fantastic. Would I be able to go off campus to play for a nearby ncaa d3 school and still attend my current institution? I would be forced to transfer, wouldn’t I?
    Thanks,
    Martina

    • Hi Martina,

      You would probably be forced to transfer, unless there is some kind of an academic agreement between the two schools in which you can register for your classes through school A, but actually take the classes at school B. These situations are rare, but I do believe that they are possible.

      Rick

  • Cam

    Rick,

    I just recently transferred from a d3 school to a d1 school this semester. So i completed the fall semester at the d3 school and started spring semester here. With that said, last year as a freshman i played baseball at the d3 school, but only participated in a few practices this fall before I decided to transfer to the d1 school for this current semester knowing that I would not be eligible to play this spring. When I arrived they told me I could not practice nor even use the baseball facilities at all. Can you help me out with this? Thanks so much

    • Hi Cam,

      I can explain why you can’t practice with the team. NCAA Div. I baseball has a roster limit during the season of 35 players. If an athlete is not on that 35-man roster, they’re not allowed to practice with the team – in effect, they are no longer a part of the team for the rest of the year. In addition, any baseball players who are on an athletic scholarship at your school must count within the 35-man limit, even if they’ve had surgery and are unable to play, or are academically ineligible.

      Rick

  • ray

    Rick, Have a baseball player as a preferred walk-on that is attending a D2 school. He worked out with the team thru the fall. Season begins in the spring semester and coach notifies him due to a low SAT score, he is ineligible.
    If he stays there to finish is freshman year and transfers to a another school juco, naia, d3 or possible d2 school to play baseball, will his SAT scores still be counted or will the school he is transferring to just look at his freshman year grades. Also will he need to get permission from the coach to transfer.

    • Ray,

      After the player has been a full-time college student for one full academic year, the school that he is transferring to will be looking at his freshman year grades and GPA. His SAT score could be a factor in the admission process, depending upon the policies of each school, but should no longer be a factor for athletic eligibility.

      He will need to get permission from his current school before NCAA coaches can talk with him, and it’s recommended that he get permission before contacting NAIA schools as well. It’s not necessary before contacting a JUCO, but is also a good practice.

      Rick

  • phil

    Rick,
    I am a senior at a D1 school playing baseball. I was injured this current year and have not participated at all. I am not planing to graduate on time and need to do another year. Can I transfer to a D3 school and play right away in the next academic year? Also if i went back to my same school for a fall semester could i transfer to a d3 and play right away for the spring semester? Thanks

    • Hi Phil,

      Yes, it would be possible to do this, either next Fall, or next year at midyear. Keep 2 things in mind, however:

      1. Div. III does not allow athletes to be eligible as grad students unless the athlete attended the Div. III school as an undergrad, so be aware of that if it is possible for you to graduate from your current school next December.
      2. Many schools have the requirement that the last 25 or 30 hours to complete your bachelor’s degree must be taken at that school, so you may have to take additional courses at the Div. III school just to get your undergrad degree.

      Rick

  • Stevie Jo

    Rick,

    If my nephew played Tennis for a D1 school last fall (non-conference tournaments) then transferred to another D1 school in the spring with a 1-Year Academic residence waiver, can he play this Spring? Compliance at his new school has been giving me the run around. Thanks so much!

    • Hi Stevie Jo,

      Because your nephew competed for the first Div. I school last Fall, he can’t be eligible to compete for his new school until next Fall. This is a rule specific to the sport of tennis.

      Rick

  • Edward

    I am a Division 1 Track athlete on a 22% scholarship. I plan on transferring to another Division 1 or possibly 2 school to play basketball next year. I have competed in the track season as a freshman. When I transfer to the Division 2 school for basketball will I have 4 years of Elgibility left in basketball since I did not participate nor was recruited for basketball at my previous school?

  • Tre Creamer

    Hi I attended a D2 school they offerd me a full scholarship but they never received my transcripts from my 2yr school I spent a semester at and I am trying to not have that semester be counted against me as a full time semester I withdrew from all my classes from there a month after class so what I’m trying to figure out can a school offer you a scholarship without having your transripts from previous schools?

  • Shan

    Hi Rick,
    I graduated out of high school in 2010 and attended Niu from 2010-11 (the end of fall semester). I took a year off of school spring semester of 2012 and enrolled into a junior college in fall of 2012. Now, I never played basketball at Niu nor the junior college I’m at now. So I wanted to know if I can play basketball in call of 2013? I would be getting my associates in the end of spring semester of 2014 can I transfer to a division 1 school in the fall of 2014 and be elgible to play basketball? Btw, I have a total of 36 credit hours now. When I get my associates (end of spring semester of 2014)what grade would I be in if only played one season at the junior college I’m at now? Would I be a RD shirt soph or junior when I transfer to a university to compete in basketball athletically in the fall of 2014?

  • James

    Hi, I am currently a DI soccer player who is looking to transfer to a DIII school. What are the implications for the process and could I bypass the transfer application procedures of the desired school?
    thanks

    • Hi James,

      You need to start by obtaining permission from your current school to talk with the Div. III school about a possible transfer. You will need to talk with the specific schools about their application procedures.

      Rick

  • Wayne

    D1 Baseball. At what point have you used a year of eligibility? Sophomore player only saw the field 5 inning as a freshman and to date 4 innings as sophomore. Player was somewhat misled by coaching staff and appears to have wasted 2 years of eligibility. Is there a recourse for recouping a year of eligibility. Is a petition to the NCAA possible?

    • Wayne,

      If those innings were during the regular season against another school, then two years of eligibility have been used. Only recourse is if the player qualifies for a medical hardship waiver – injured or ill to the point of not being able to complete the season (with medical documentation to support that claim), and has not played in more than 30% of team’s games, and not past half-way mark of the season.

      Rick

  • Young Aus

    Hi, I am at a d2 juco an I am on athletic and academic scholarship, will i need my coaches permission to leave to another school? Either NCAA or juco.
    I called the njcaa they said I need to be released to go to another juco

    • You don’t need permission to leave for an NCAA school. To be eligible at another JUCO, you will need to obtain an NJCAA Transfer Waiver Form signed by your current school administrators.

      Rick

      • Young Aus

        thanks,and what about if I have a medical red shirt my first year? will that make it easier to get out?
        And by administrators do you mean coach? Because im 90% sure my coach will not release me

        • I don’t think the medical redshirt will make any difference. And it’s my understanding that the NJCAA form must be signed by the AD and President (or President’s designee).

          Rick

          • Young Aus

            Ok, one more thing, if i really want to get out but the coach won’t release me is there anything else I can do to go play at another juco? Any ways around it?

          • You can still transfer to another JUCO, but would have to attend that JUCO for one year before you would be eligible for competition.

            Rick

  • Susan

    Thank you so much for your blog it is very informative. My question is this: A D1 softball player on a scholarship will be finishing freshman year. Not happy with the program and not learning from the coaches. Contemplating a transfer to another school -division is not important. Quality of the program and school curriculum is. I understand she cannot talk with other coaches at other schools and if she transfers to a D1 she sits a year. Is it best to wait until the end of this year-the next few weeks, sign her NLI for next year and then proceed? Big question is, can a prior competitive league coach who was instrumental in getting her recruited to current school make contacts on her behalf to help her to see what is out there before she asks for permission to talk to other coaches?

    • Hi Susan,

      First off, she won’t necessarily have to sit for a year if she goes to another Div. I school. Basketball is the only women’s sport in which that rule applies.

      Regarding a club coach making contacts on her behalf, you will want to make sure and have the club coach be very discreet. The last thing you want to have happen is that he mentions your daughter’s name (or provides identifiable info), and another college coach calls her current coach to ask for info about her.

      Rick

      • Susan

        thanks so much for the info. Now that we are almost at the end of the season is it best to sign the next year NLI if all goes well at the exit meeting and later start the search for a new school? There are always so many unknowns it seems; will the coaches all stay? will other players leave or be released? etc, things could get better. Things can change quickly so don’t want to make an abrupt decision. I know now better questions to ask of coaches about their program. :>)

        • Susan,

          That is a difficult question. If you sign the scholarship offer for next year to “protect” yourself, but then ask for the “permission to contact” just a few days later, you anger the coach and he may make the transfer harder by trying to block it.

          Also, how long are you going to wait until starting the search for a new school? The longer you wait, the fewer opportunities will be available.

          Rick

  • Arnold

    My son will be freshman basketball player with full scholarship at a D2 school at the next year. He wants to transfer after the first semester to D1 school in our home town. What are the rules on this? When he will be eligibility to play at new school ?

    • Arnold,

      He will need to get a release from his National Letter of Intent commitment to attend the Div. II school for at least one full year. The Div. II school will probably not release him since he’s not even going to complete one basketball season for them. He won’t be able to be eligible at the Div. I school until he attends there for one full academic year (two semesters). Also, if he’s not released from his NLI commitment by the first school, he’ll lose a year of eligibility.

      Rick

        • Arnold,

          He can transfer after first semester, but if he signed an NLI with the Div. II school, he has committed to attend there for a full academic year in exchange for their offer of a scholarship. You may want to review the document he (and probably you as his parent) signed to see what the penalties are if he does what he’s planning to do.

          Rick

  • lucas

    Hi I walked on at a dI football team and made it but quit three months later due to some personal issues my freshman year. I am going to be a junior next year and want to walk back on can you tell me how many years I will have?

    • Lucas,

      In NCAA Div. I, you have a “five-year clock” during which you can have up to four years of eligibility. The “clock” started with your initial full-time college enrollment. If you are finishing up your 2nd year of college, you have 3 years left on your “clock.”

      Rick

      • lucas

        Ohhh ok I see thank you, another question was if I was to transfer to another university would I have to sit out since I havent played in awhile, I read if its beeb two years since playing and youvr gone to school for a year that you dont have to sit when u transfer

        • Lucas,

          There is a transfer exception called the “Two-Year Nonparticipation Exception” which allows a transfer to be eligible if they have not competed or PRACTICED for a consecutive two year period since their last participation at the previous school (time prior to enrollment in college doesn’t count). You would also have to meet academic requirements for a transfer in order to be able to use that Exception.

          Rick

  • Greg

    My son swam Division 3 his freshman year. He took off this current academic year and did not attend classes. He is now transferring to a Division 1 swimming program and hoping to start this fall. Now he finds out his plans may not pan out. He did compete in his local home town swim club team and competing in some USA swimming meets. Nothing to do with any college competition. The transfer waiver of academic progress evidently is lost due to him competing this past off yeer in some meets. So if he attends this new school he has to make up this past years satisfactory credits to be eligible and take the years worth of credits over the summer to be eligible in the fall according to the new school’s compliance officer. We are not finding any other schools or any rule book saying or validating this compliance officers claims. Do you have any beliefs in his chances of finding out if the schools interpretion is wrong and the transfer excetion waiver would be ok for him? He has some major decisions to make really quickly and has been making calls to the NCAA witout much luck.

    • Hi Greg,

      It appears that the rule the compliance administrator is citing is the “Missed Term Exception” which addresses Progress Towards Degree if an athlete “…misses a complete term or consecutive terms during an academic year.” One of the conditions of this Exception, however, is that “The student-athlete has engaged in no outside competition in the sport during the term or terms in which the student was not in attendance.” (Bylaw 14.4.3.5(a)(1))

      I’m not certain that is the correct rule application, however. I believe that rule applies when an athlete was enrolled at a school for part of a year, but missed a semester or two quarters of the year. I think your son can use the One-Time Transfer Exception as long as your son’s Div. III school can state that he would have been eligible had he returned to their school rather than transferring to the Div. I program. He also will need to have met other academic requirements as well while enrolled at the Div. III school.

      I suggest that you contact the compliance administrator at the conference office of which the Div. I school is a member to seek their input.

      Good luck!

      Rick

      • Greg

        Rick,

        Many thanks as your response gave us some hope. I am happy to report that my son heard today he is good to go and be fully eligible in the fall. The progress rule does not apply to him. I think you have a wonderful service and good luck to you and your business. They say see a need and fill a need. Well this past week really opened my eyes to the grey areas of how to interpret the hornets nest of NCAA rules. I just could not imagine how a kid who takes a year off of school to work and train and then decides to go Division 1 on his own dime would have been eligible or was being asked to take a years worth of credits this summer to be eligible? But delighted the original interpretation by the compliance officer was not accurate.

  • john

    Hi my son play basketball at USCAA D1 , that is four years college, he is s freshman and he has scholarship at this school. Do you know if he can transfer to NCAA D1 after his first year ? He is a full time student .

    • Hi John,

      He can transfer to NCAA Div. I after his first year, but he won’t be eligible to play until he attends the Div. I school for one full academic year. He should be able to practice with the team during his “sit out” year, however.

      Rick

      • john

        Thank tou very much ,also i have a nephew who will be attending to the same college and he wants to transfer to the NCAA D1 after his first semester (at mid-year),
        I m not sure about that , but what are the possibilities to do that ?

          • john

            Is that mean that he doesn’t have to stay at least one full year at this college before he can transfer ?

          • John,

            He doesn’t have to stay at least one full year if he didn’t sign a National Letter of Intent with the school. If he did, it is much better to stay there to complete his commitment to attend the school for one full academic year in exchange for a scholarship. If he leaves after just one semester, there may be penalties involved that will effect his seasons of eligibility.

            Rick

  • james

    Hello Rick, if a kid played 2 years of Juco ball and did not graduate and was a non qualifyer. But is finishing up her 2 classes for graduation this fall.Can she come in at mid year and play div 1 basketball?

    • James,

      No. A mid-year transfer in the sport of Div. I basketball will not be able to be eligible for competition until the following academic year.

      Rick

  • Nicole

    Hi, my son signed A NLI with scholarship for DI baseball. He graduated from JUCO this summer. He met all requirements to qualify with the exception of one, he only has 3 units of English instead of the required 6. Can he attend the DI school in the fall and take an English class and be eligible to play in the spring? I realize the scholarship would not be given in the fall due to non qualifier but could they re-offer the scholarship in spring?

    The school has applied for a waiver but I want to know all our options in case waiver denied.

    • Nicole,

      If your son is not eligible when he enrolls at the Div. I school this Fall, he can’t regain eligibility for the Spring. The NCAA transfer rules state that he will be ineligible for the whole academic year. As a result, he won’t be eligible for his scholarship in the Spring term.

      Rick

  • Jajuan

    Hey Rick i am currently a D3 basketball player and I plan on transferring to a D1 school for financial reasons next semester and i was wondering if i plan on transferring next semester would I be able to play this semester at my current school whether I play at the division 1 school or not?

    • Jajuan,

      You can do that, but if your Div. III coach knows you’re planning to leave at semester, he’s probably not going to give you any playing time before you leave.

      Rick

  • Patricia

    Hi Rick. My son is at a D1 School for football. Redshirt freshman. He walked on last year. He was NOT recruited (I looked at the NCAA’s 4 guidelines you listed) would he have to sit out a year if he transferred to another FBS D1 program? Someone told us no if he never was on the field? Not sure if that’s true? Let me know if a phone consultation would be better suites to answer this. Thanks!

    • Patricia,

      He would not have to sit out a year, as long as he met the academic requirements for the transfer and was released by his current school. What the “someone” told you has no impact on his eligibility as a transfer.

      Rick

  • Hannah

    I am a college freshman at a school with no swim team(D3). I want to transfer mid year to a Division 1 school.I would start in January. Would I be able to join the swim team mid year even though it has already started? Or how long would I have to wait? Is there any other information I need to know?

  • Joe

    Hello Rick,
    My son got a Partial scholarship at a DII school for football for the Fall 2011 program. He was released at semester and attended a DIII school in the Spring of 2012. He practiced with the school for the Spring of 2012, and then in the Fall 2012, and then in the Spring 2013, and then in the Fall of 2013. He did not make the team in 2012, or 2013 and he went part time with 11, and 11.5 credits to keep his eligibility. He has 7 semesters left which could be another 3 years of eligible play. If he transfers to a DII or DI, does he have to sit out a year even though he did not play for 2011,2012,and 2013? We are trying to see what the best Division to transfer would be the easiest path so he can play next Fall of 2014 and finish his career in football.

    • Joe,

      If at the time that your son would transfer to another school, let’s assume January 2014, he has not participated in any football practice activities for a two consecutive year period, he could possibly be eligible under the “Two-Year Nonparticipation Exception.” Otherwise, because he would be a two-time transfer between four-year schools, he would need to attend the 3rd school for one full academic year before he can be eligible.

      Rick

  • Tom Sr.

    Hi Rick,
    My son is on scholarship at a D1 university for baseball. He was recruited out of high school, played his freshman and sophomore years, and now at the beginning of his junior year has been released due to breaking team rules. He is out of state and wants to come back to his home state and either enter another D1 or D2 school. One D2 school is already offering admission but are requiring he sit out this coming season. I understand that’s not required going from D1 to D2 but that is their offer. If we contact a D1 school and if they admit him, is he required to sit out one year? Also, he would need to complete one full academic year at the new D1 school before he could be eligible to play, correct? Thanks

    • Tom,

      The answer to both your questions is the same. He would have to sit out for one year, which is officially called the “year in residence” – attending the Div. I school for one full academic year before he can be eligible for competition.

      Rick

  • Louis E

    Hello Rick’
    I’m planning in enrolling a Junior college next semester as a freshman, that would be for the spring semester and I’m just wondering if I can play basketball inmediately after enrolling or I have to sit down for the rest of that season. thanks for your help bro

    • Louis,

      It would be possible to be immediately eligible to play during the spring semester, but many coaches will choose to redshirt you since you weren’t there to work out with the team and learn all of the plays during the Fall.

      Rick

  • Dawn

    Hi Rick,

    Does tranferring from a USCAA football program to NCAA program effect eligibility as well? My son was recruited, but has only practiced and not played. He wants to transfer mid-year, but we’re not really sure which steps to take.

    • Dawn,

      Information on the steps to follow can be found in our downloadable transcript “What You Should Know About Transfers” which can be found in the Store of this website.

      Rick

  • N.D.

    Hi Rick,

    I have a bit of an interesting situation on my hands here. I competed at a Junior college last year in baseball (freshman year) and loved it. After my freshman year, I was planning on coming back to that junior college, but about three weeks before school started, a division 1 school offered me a scholarship. I accepted the scholarship and feel as if I may have been a bit misled. My question is, would I be able to transfer from my division 1 school back to my junior college and be able to compete in the spring? It looks as if all my credits and whatnot line up. But I need as many opinions as I can get and you seem like the man to ask.

    Thanks,
    Nick

  • J J

    Can you help with this question. D1 basketball player wants to transfer to another D1 school. D1 player is on a current medical redshirt? Will they blow a year of eligibility with the transfer regardless when they transfer? Is it best to transfer midyear or finish the current year with current D1 school?

    • JJ,

      If the player is on a scholarship at current school, they will have to sit out for their first year at another Div. I program. The timing of a transfer needs to be the decision of the player and his/her family.

      Rick

  • John

    I’m a male rower. I am at a division III school and have practiced with the team but not yet competed. There are fall competitions but they have yet to happen. I am going to transfer the spring semester to another institution and row this spring at that institution. Will I use 2 years of eligibility in 1 academic year if i compete in the fall at this school and the spring at the transfer school?

  • RENEE

    My daughter (Sophmore) plays NAIA lacrosse. The coach left and the team of 21 split. If she wants to transfer to an NCAA DI, DII or DIII school can she be released, due to not having a full team? Both goalies are gone. We are conflicted in her participation of a fall ball game in a few weeks that could take away 1 year of her eligibility. Fortunately lacrosse teams are popping up all over the place and she can transfer to a new program that will not play until spring of 2015. We hate to see her sit out a year, but not sure what’s involved in a release.

    • Renee,

      Before coaches at NCAA schools can talk with you or your daughter about a possible transfer, they’ll need to receive a “permission to contact” form, letter, or e-mail from her current school. It will be possible for her to be eligible at another school upon transfer without the requirement to sit out for a year.

      If you would like to discuss the transfer rules and process in detail, contact me directly for a consultation call.

      Rick

  • Dean

    Hi Rick!

    My son had a 50% scholarship for baseball D1 his Freshman year. He and us parents were told we had the coaches word he would get 4 years paid. He played more than most, got exactly 20 at bats no starts and the coach took his scholarship away. He transferred to a Juco and got his associates degree his sophomore year. He’s at a D2 in California now and looks like he will play but not as a starter and only limited time. He’s frustrated and interested in a mid year transfer to a 4th school. Is this too much transferring and will the MLB scouts be concerned. He has had real legit reasons to move and found lots of interest during his last search from D1s and D2s that said he would play and start…It seems like a good move to transfer again but I don’t want him to get a rep…What are your thoughts? Is his coach obligated to let him to talk to teams if he officially asks?

    • Dean,

      His coach is NOT obligated to let him talk to other schools if he asks to do so. If he transfers to a Div. I or II school he will ineligible during his first year of attendance at that school. His only option to play right away at the next school is to go to an NCAA Div. III school, or possibly an NAIA school.

      Rick

      • Dean

        Thanks for responding so quickly! You do a wonderful thing with this site! The coach couldn’t prevent him from transferring could he?
        I thought he would be eligible this spring if goes D2 to D2? But would have to sit out spring and be eligible in Fall if he went D2 to D1?

        • Dean

          Rick. Also my son didn’t play in the only 3 fall games because of a minor injury. Then in the 3rd and final game when he was fine against outside competition he sat the whole game and just got 1 at bat at the end and no defensive half inning even. He played in an inter squad game earlier in fall but didn’t really have a fall season sitting through most of the games. Does this help make him eligible?

      • Dean

        Rick,
        1. What if my son only got 1 at bat in the 9th inning of all fall ball games against outside teams 3 games at his D2 school? Would that make him eligible to play next spring? He didn’t even get one complete inning and no defensive half inning. He played a couple inter-squad games.
        2. Can the coach stop him from transferring? It sounds like he can stop him from speaking with teams.
        3. If he transfers mid season in January from D2 to D2 or D2 to D1 mid season does he just need to sit out spring or also fall too?
        Thanks!
        Dean

        • Dean,

          Given the number of questions that you have and the complexity of your son’s situation, it would be appropriate to do a paid phone consultation to walk through all the details of his situation and his options. My contact info is on the “About Us” page of our website if that’s of interest.

          Rick

  • Collin B

    Rick,

    I currently am at a Div 1 school playing baseball. I am also on an athletic scholarship. Due to reasons concerning my major I feel that it is best for me to transfer midyear to another Div 1 school back home. If I do this transfer midyear will that make me eligible next school year? I would be a walk-on at the new school. Thanks!

    Collin

  • Steve c

    Rick,
    Kind of a crazy situation. In a college baseball player I attended a div 2 4yr school for fall11/spring12. Transferred to a d1 juco for fall12, took spring off due to tommy John surgery. And now attended a div1 4yr fall13. Currently I have to sit out because I did not graduate juco. Is there anyway I could be eligible to play spring 14 if I transferred to a division 3 school after this semester?

    Steve

    • Steve,

      To be eligible at a Div. III school in the Spring, the Div. I school would need to be able to state on a transfer request form that you would be eligible if you were returning to the Div. I school in the Spring. Since they can’t do that, you can’t be eligible next Spring at a Div. III school.

      Rick

  • Tom

    Rick,
    Crazy situation. My son is at a division III school where he originally committed to play both football and baseball. Those plans didn’t work out and he only played baseball. He is currently a sophomore and missed last season due to an injury. He is planning to withdrawal in the next week due to a family situation and move closer to home. Is there any way he could be eligible to play at a division one school (small dI school in our town) in 2014-2015 if he also took the 2014 spring semester off? Also, do you have any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Tom

    • Tom,

      We should definitely talk before he withdraws from all his classes. That could affect his eligibility at a future school. Contact me directly for a private consultation.

      Rick

  • Larry

    Rick: Can a senior baseball D1 player who had already red shirted and is in his 5th year, graduate in December, then transfer to another D1 baseball program at the semester and be eligible immediately, that spring if that Senior player has already graduated? Like QB football player, Russell Wilson did when he graduated from D1 North Carolina State in May and transferred to Wisconsin and was immediately eligible in the fall, as he still had 1 year of eligibility.

    • Larry,

      In Div. I baseball, midyear transfers can’t be eligible for competition until the following academic year. This would be possible for the player to transfer to a Div. II program, however.

      Rick

  • Liam

    Rick,
    I am currently enrolled in a D2 school playing golf, i played this semester and am transferring to another d2 school to play golf in the spring, will i lose a year of eligibilty for this or is it ok?
    Thanks a lot
    Liam

  • Dan-Nar

    Hey Rick,
    My name is Dan-Nar and I graduated high school in 2011. I then on went on to a Div. II school and am attending there as 3rd year junior, I would like to transfer to division 1 basketball school after this year and play basketball how many years eligibility do I have left and what do I need to transfer and what other options do I have for division II basketball. FYI I have been attending this school for 3 straight years no breaks in between.

  • Ray

    My son played a full season of football as a freshman at an NAIA school on a football scholarship. He wants to transfer at 2nd semester to a D1 FCS school. If he is able to transfer and he must sit out the 2014 football season – does he get to fully in practices including spring football 2013, summer practices and fall football practices understanding that he cannot play in games. And will he keep his remaining 3 years of eligibility after he sits out the 2013 season? Do schools normally just consider this a red shirt type year and show a willingness to give a scholarship even though the student can’t compete?

  • Concerned athlete

    I am currently a student-athlete at a div 1 school, I was recruited an signed the nli, I am in the sport of wrestling so my season is currently going on but I am a redshirt freshman, I want to transfer at semester to a div 3 school that I now can afford even to walk-on. When should I ask for my permission to contact, how do I go about this with my coaches or athletic director, and when can I call the other coach?

  • Hayden

    Rick,
    I am transferring from a D-III football school to a community college this next semester (spring) to a D1 football school in the fall. Do I need to get a release of some sort from the D3 school/ sit out a year in order to play in the fall? And is there any way that I can attend the D1 school’s spring practices even though I’m at the community college that has a joint admission agreement with the D1 school? And is there any possible way that I could retroactively apply for a redshirt from last season at the D3 school if I only played 10 special teams snaps?
    Thanks and sorry for so many questions, every compliance office seems really confused so far

    • Hayden,

      You can’t retroactively apply for a redshirt season unless you had an injury or illness that was serious enough to keep you from playing for the remainder of the season following the injury or illness.

      Also, as a 4-2-4 transfer to a Div. I program, you’ll have to stay at the two-year college long enough to graduate with your Associates Degree (and meet other academic requirements), in order to be eligible when you transfer to the Div. I program.

      Rick

  • Derek

    I played soccer at a Division 2 school and then transferred to an NAIA school for soccer and didn’t have to sit out a year. Due to my circumstances now…I will be transferring to a Division 1 school for football but they say I need to sit out a year…I was wondering if this is true? Do I need to sit out a year even though I will be playing a different sport at a completely different level? Any help will be awesome! Thank you for your time!

    • Derek,

      Since you haven’t yet participated in football at the college level, you might be able to be eligible without sitting out for a year under the “Two-Year Nonparticipation Exception.” Ask the Compliance Director at the Div. I school if that Exception will work in your favor.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Haley

    I am a Sophomore at a D2. I play softball and I have played in 8 games this spring. I’m considering transferring to a JUCO. How many games can I play to keep my Sophomore year elegibility?

  • tess

    Hi Rick,
    I am a college admissions counselor and one of my students just started (as a freshman)at UF this spring semester 2014(DIV I golf)after essentially taking a GAP year to play golf for a year and a half. He was encouraged by coach to attend and that he would play. (golf season is in spring semester.) He is there now, coach said he wasn’t eligible now! What rule is that, He and mom are upset.

    • Tess,

      If he played golf competitively for more than one year after HS graduation, then he is ineligible during his first year at the school under the NCAA Div. I “amateurism” rules for “delayed enrollment”. If the athlete or mother want to contact me for an explanation of this situation, my contact info is on the “About Us” page of our website.

      Rick

  • Eric

    Hi Rick, my son is a redshirt Junior baseball player at a D1 school on partial scholarship for this year only. This is his fourth year, (one year as a redshirt at a Juco, 2 years playing at a Juco, and this year at a D1) we would like to find out the rules for transferring to another D1, DII, DIII, or NAIA.
    I think I understand that if he wants to transfers to a D1 he will need permission from his current coach to speak with other coaches. And he will have to sit out a year at the next school, which means all of his five years will be up. Does this also apply for the DII, DIII, and NAIA schools?
    Or is it possible that he can play next year at a lower level school and not sit out? And will he need permission from his current coach to speak with any other coaches at the different level schools?

    • Eric,

      Your son will need permission from his current school before coaches at other NCAA schools can talk with him about a possible transfer. The NAIA rule is slightly different, but quite similar. He will not be eligible to play next year if he goes to another Div. I program, but could possibly be eligible next year at an NCAA Div. II, III, or NAIA school.

      If you would like to discuss his options in detail, I’ll be glad to do so. I frequently consult with athletes and/or parents regarding NCAA eligibility and transfer rules. All consultations are completely confidential.

      If a consultation is of interest, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • LC

    I wanted to know if you can transfer from d2 and enroll in d1 college for the spring and able to compete in the same season…i am talikng about swimming.
    thanks

    • LC,

      If you compete for the Div. II school before transferring to a Div. I school at midyear, you can’t compete for the Div. I program until the following academic year. You can’t compete for two different schools during the same season.

      Rick

  • Thomasanne

    Hi Rick,

    My son is going to attend a D2 school this fall. He is going there because it was the only one offering a scholarship and he wants to transfer to a D3 school closer to our family mid year. He is a redshirt freshmen who previously played D1 sports. Will he be able to get financial aid and play right away his Spring semester if transferred to a D3 school?

    • Thomasanne,

      Your son’s ability to get financial aid at a Div. III school will be based on academic, leadership, or involvement in activities in general, it won’t be based strictly on athletic ability. His eligibility to play right away will depend upon his academic performance at the Div. II school before he transfers.

      Rick

  • linda

    Hello,

    I am international student, I am 21 years old, I want to know if I am eligible to play NJCAA?

    thanks

    • Linda,

      Because you are 21, you will be charged with one season of competition under the NJCAA rules. You may have one year of eligibility available depending upon your academic credentials, and as long as you don’t turn 22 before you attend an NJCAA school.

      Rick

Leave a Reply