National Letter of Intent Reminders

Rick-Allen-Thumb-150Congratulations to those prospects who have committed to a school and will have the opportunity to sign a National Letter of Intent with their NCAA Division I or II future school during the upcoming signing period.

Here are some NLI general reminders and points to keep in mind:

Signing the National Letter of Intent commits the athlete to attend the school they sign with for one full academic year in exchange for receiving an athletic scholarship.  If an athlete withdraws from school before completing one academic year, they might incur penalties upon transfer to another school, unless the school they signed with releases them.  (This release is different than a release to speak with other schools about a transfer – two separate processes.)

The NLI must be accompanied by a financial aid agreement from the school the prospect will sign with. If both documents are not signed, the NLI will not be valid.  Be sure to confirm that the financial aid agreement reflects the same amount of athletic scholarship that was offered during the recruiting process.

Coaches are not permitted to deliver the National Letter of Intent in person.  Also, coaches are not permitted to be present when the prospect signs the NLI.  The family of a prospect will sometimes ask if the coach can be present so they can get a picture together when their son or daughter signs the NLI.  This is ok for Junior Colleges or NAIA schools, but not for NCAA coaches.

The financial aid agreement commits the school to provide an athletic scholarship to the athlete for at least one academic year.  Athletes must be notified by July 1st each year whether their athletic scholarship will be renewed for the same amount, increased, decreased, or cancelled for the upcoming academic year.  If an athlete’s scholarship is reduced or cancelled, the athlete must be notified by the school that a hearing opportunity is available to them.

Prospects who are planning to play both football and another sport at the college level (applies to both Division I and II) should not sign with their school until the football signing period in February.  A number of years ago, some schools tried to get an advantage by having football recruits sign in other sports during the November signing period.  That loophole was closed, and now football players or true dual-sport athletes who sign in November will be ineligible for practice and competition in football during their freshman year, and will forfeit a season of competition.

It’s permissible to “double sign” with an NCAA school and a Junior College.  That’s somewhat common since some players want to “lock in” with an NCAA program, but also may want to attend Junior College to have an opportunity to be drafted after freshman year.  (The Junior College signing date for baseball is January 15.)

Players who sign with an NCAA school, but start out at a junior college, need to keep in mind that the National Letter of Intent that they signed with the NCAA school remains binding on them until they graduate from the Junior College.  Athletes who sign with NCAA school A, but change their mind and want to attend NCAA school B after junior college, will still be bound to NCAA school A if they want to transfer before completing their Associates degree.  The other option is to obtain a complete release from the National Letter of Intent.

 

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

467 Responses to National Letter of Intent Reminders

    • Hi Steve,

      As I read your question, I’m not sure if you are asking what the steps are for a signed athlete to request a release, or if a coach is wanting to release a signed athlete because of oversigning.

      Regardless, there is a release request form that is available from the school that the athlete signed with. Or, if you want me to make the form available to you, send me an e-mail at the address on our website.

      Rick

      • Cody

        Mr. Allen,
        I just signed my letter of intent to go to an NAIA school. I am being offered a scholarship to play football. That was 2 days ago. Now I have other schools popping up saying they will offer me a scholarship to go to their NAIA school. My questions are,
        1.) Can I talk to these schools without getting penalized by my current school that I signed with?
        2.) How do you commit to a school after national signing day?

        • Hi Cody,

          My experience is more with NCAA rules than it is with NAIA rules. With that said, it is my understanding that an NAIA letter of intent is only binding on the institution that offers it. I do not believe NAIA has a national document that applies to all of their member schools.

          I would carefully review the document you signed (you should have already done this anyway before signing it) and see if it says anything about limiting you from contact with other NAIA schools.

          Rick

          • Eric

            Hello rick

            If I get a release to transfer form in the middle of the season am I still aloud to participate with my sport?

          • Eric,

            This will depend upon your coach. The rules allow you to continue with your sport until the end of the season, but some coaches would remove you from the team in this situation.

            Rick

    • Jonathan

      If I sign a Letter of Intent to play baseball at a JUCO, are the coaches aloud to take away my scholarship for any particular reason after I sign?

      • Jonathan,

        I would carefully read the Letter of Intent (both the front and the back if it is a two-sided document) that the JUCO will provide to you before you sign it. That way, you should know what rights they have and what rights you have.

        Rick

  • Debbie

    my son signed an NLI in November to play baseball, got a good scholarship but because it a very expensive school will be stuck with $22,000 in private and federal student loans just for Freshman year, he is having second thoughts and thinks it better to go to Junior college.

    Can he get out of NLI with school saying its a financial hardship?

    • Hi Debbie,

      Your son can approach the coaches and ask if they will release him from the NLI under the circumstances. However, it’s up to the school as to whether they’ll agree to do that. But he doesn’t even need to do that if he’s going to a JUCO instead. Be sure to read his NLI document and review how an athlete in his situation can still be bound to attend the school he originally signed with, even after attending a JUCO.

      Rick

  • Christine

    My son signed a full ride scholarship to attend a Big Ten school. Since the time of the signing, the coaches have left (got jobs elsewhere). He does not want to attand the school since the coaches have changed. Is it possible to “change his mind” now, with school starting in 2 months? (I.e. Go to a different school even though he signed?)

    • Hi Christine,

      It is possible to request a release from the National Letter of Intent. The school your son signed with would need to agree to it. If they don’t agree to it, your son can submit an Appeal Request Form to the National Letter of Intent office. However, keep in mind that it may be difficult for your son to find another offer like the one he has in hand at this late stage, not to mention that the school may not agree to the release because it would be hard for them to find another quality recruit to take your son’s place in this recruiting class.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Martha Thomas

    Rick, my daughter signed a letter of intent, but is a multi-sport athlete and wants to pursue another sport at the same institution. What are the restrictions against her contacting another coach at the same school? The two sports are in the same season – so she can’t do both. Thanks!

    • Hi Martha,

      There are no NCAA restrictions against contacting another coach at the same school. However, she really needs to talk to the head coach of the sport that recruited and signed her, before she talks to the other coaching staff. Depending upon the relationships between the coaches in those two sports, the coach of the second sport might not accept her on the team, because it would be taking a recruit away from the first sport with very little time to recruit a quality replacement. She should consider sticking with the original sport for one year, and then making the switch if she still wants to.

      Rick

  • Jim Grayson

    My daughter signed with a NAIA school to play basketball and now has an offer from a NCAA DI school can she be released from the NAIA to sign with the NCAA school?

    • Hi Jim,

      The NAIA letter of intent is totally separate and apart from the National Letter of Intent that NCAA schools use, so no release is necessary. However, you should consider being up front with the NAIA school and letting them know what you’re daughter is planning to do. That way you’re not burning any bridges in case something happens in the future and she wants to transfer to that NAIA school.

      Rick

  • ashley

    I was recruited to run Cross Country and track at URI. However my senior year outdoor track season went terribly. I dont know if i want to continue running in college anymore but i already signed.. Is it too late to quit?

    • Hi Ashley,

      That’s really unfortunate that your high school track career ended on a bad note. Perhaps you’ll regain your enthusiasm after taking a break from the sport. If you feel that you’re burned out and want to quit, you can do that at any time. However, keep in mind some possible consequences that may affect you if you change your mind in a year or so, and desire to get back into the sport.

      1. If you are going to receive an athletic scholarship from URI this year, they will have you sign a “voluntary withdrawal” form to give up your scholarship.
      2. If you stay at URI, and decide to compete next year or the year after, the coach may question your commitment and may treat you differently than other team members.
      3. If you go to a school other than URI this year, and then decide to compete at your “new school” next year, there could be eligibility penalties if you signed a National Letter of Intent with URI and didn’t honor your commitment to attend there and participate in athletics for one year.

      Be sure to thoroughly think through your decision. Good luck!

      Rick

  • Tom

    My daughter signed with a D 1 basketball program, but decided this was not for her after beginning school and beginning practice but she played in no games. She now wants to drop down a division and play and I presume needs to request some sort of release to begin contacting other schools. Is this a release from the NLI or a release from the scholarship, since she has not played at the college level yet? Thanks!

    • Hi Tom,

      I think it would be best if we talk on the phone so I can get some additional information on your daughter’s situation. This will allow me to provide the most appropriate information. I will follow up with a personal e-mail to you.

      Rick

  • Steve Cooper

    Dear Rick,
    I appreciate the info on your site. My son signed a D2 NLI to play basketball, while still playing (currently) his senior football season. He has now been approached by a D1 school to play football. However the D1 school has not offered a scholarship, only the opportunity to come as a preferred walk on. The thought of playing D1 football is so compelling that he is seriously thinking of applying to the D1 school, so that he may play football.
    However, is he locked into the D2 commitment? Though it is a different level and a different sport? If he pursues the D1 opportunity, what happens to his eligibility?

    • Hi Steve,

      Your son is locked into the Div. II basketball commitment unless that school will give him a complete release from the NLI. Division I and II schools use the same NLI form and have the same requirements. As far as what happens to his eligibility, review the NLI document your son signed. It should list what the penalty is if he doesn’t attend the Div. II school for his freshman year.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Tim R.

    Dear Rick,

    My daughter is being offered a scholarship for volleyball at a Junior College (Div 1 NJCAA). This is the first offer, and they ask that we sign in 3 weeks. Club season starts in January. If she signs with the Junior College, can she accept an offer from a NCAA Div 1 or Div 2, or is she committed to the Junior College? What are the rules pertaining to getting accepting a scholarship at a 4-year college versus a Juco if you are already signed?

    Thank you.

    • Hi Tim,

      An athlete can sign a letter of intent with a Junior College and also sign one with an NCAA Div. I or II program. They are two completely different documents with one having no direct effect on the other.

      Keep in mind, however, that the NCAA National Letter of Intent covers both Division I and II. In other words, you can’t sign an NCAA NLI with a Div. I school and then another one with a Div. II school. Congrats to your daughter on her first offer and good luck with her club season!

      Rick

  • Randy F

    My son is in his third year of college. He is competing at the D1 level. He is a 85% athletic scholarship. Half way through his first semester, he quit the team. He later had a medical condition, had to leave school and has applied for medical withdraw from the univeristy (still pending approval).

    He has since taken care of his medical issue and wants to sign up for the second semister at a different school. He would like to also try to earn a spot on the team at this new school.

    Since he quit the team during his 1st semester, is he now eligible to compete for a different school in the second semister?

    • Hi Randy,

      I’m assuming your son’s sport is baseball. If he transfers to another Div. I school for the second semester, he won’t be eligible to compete until Spring 2013. If he transfers to a Div. II or NAIA school, it’s possible that he could be eligible for the second semester, but he’ll probably need to apply for a medical absence waiver from the NCAA for his medical withdrawal this semester. Otherwise, his current school would not be able to certify that he would be eligible if he were returning rather than transferring elsewhere.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Leonard

    My brother-in-law played football at a JC. He just finished his Sophomore year & transferred to another community college closer to home to finish his classes & obtain an associates degree. Can he sign a NLI during the regular signing period? I believe it starts on Feb. 1

    • Hi Leonard,

      Yes, your brother-in-law can sign a NLI during the football signing period, as long as he is registered with the Eligibility Center and has submitted his transcript and test scores to the school he will be signing with. Depending upon what level of football program he signs with, he should keep in mind that by attending more than one two-year college, he may be required to have at least 25% of his course requirements for academic eligibility come from the two-year college that awards his associates degree.

      Rick

  • Jackson

    Hey Mr. Allen,
    I have committed to play soccer for the United States Naval Academy but I’m not sure if the Academies have letter of intents since they’re all free. Will I still be able to attend my school’s signing day in February?

    • Hi Jackson,

      Congratulations on your commitment to the Naval Academy! There’s no reason you can’t attend your school’s signing day in February, unless they have some rule that you have to be signing a scholarship offer. I’m sure you can sign something from the Academy even if it’s not a letter of intent. An acceptance of admission is one idea.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • rob taprit

    Mr Allen,

    My son signed an NLI back in November with a division 1 baseball program. he is having second thoughts and was thinking about maybe going to a junior college instead. Does he need to file a release form and give to the coaches? or can he just go to the JUCO without doing that?

    • Rob,

      Your son does not have to have a release from the Div. I program to go to a JUCO. However, it is advisable to ask for a release from his NLI commitment. Otherwise, the NLI that he signed with the Div. I program will still be binding on him unless he graduates from the JUCO before transferring to another Div. I university. If you need assistance with the NLI release, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • kathleen

    My son was a recruited walk on in the fall to a D1 program. Decided to transfer at the break to a Juco for baseball. He is now rostered at the juco, however is unsure if this is the right fit for him. He signed a Juco NLI for this season, however, if he decides he’d like to explore his other juco options, when is it safe and appropriate of him to contact other jucos for possibly the next year.
    thanks

    • Hi Kathleen,

      That depends largely upon how his spring is going with baseball. If he’s getting plenty of playing time, it’s probably best to wait until the end of the season. If the spring is not going well, and he’s sitting on the bench, then he can probably start contacting other Jucos earlier, because he doesn’t have as much to lose.

      Keep in mind that baseball coaches tend to share a lot of information, and do it frequently. As soon as your son contacts another Juco about a possible transfer, the coach at that school is probably going to call your son’s current coach to ask about his background, both on and off the field. You can understand that this will hurt his playing time, as soon as his current coach finds out he’s not fully committed to the program.

      Good luck to your son this spring!

      Rick

    • Hi Todd,

      An athletic scholarship can be cancelled immediately if an athlete voluntarily withdraws from a team. Although it’s possible, it’s unlikely that a school would make an athlete repay the value of the scholarship that had already been utilized for that semester. In most cases, the athlete would simply not receive a prorated portion of the scholarship for the remainder of the semester.

      WIth that said, however, I have seen agreements for summer school that state that the athlete must pay the full cost of a summer course if the athlete withdraws from the course or fails the course.

      Rick

  • Mr. Solis

    My daughter received a women’s soccer scholarship financial agreement document from an NAIA school and another one from a Junior College with a dead line to return the signed document, but my daughter really wants to play volleyball and had a verbal commitment with a NCAA Div II and we are awaiting for her to get accepted in that school and awaiting for the NLI which the coach said will be mail out in April 12. Can she signed the soccer offers pending the one from the volleyball offer?

    ?

    • Hi Mr. Solis,

      Yes, your daughter can sign the soccer offers from the NAIA and the Junior College while waiting for the Div. II volleyball offer. You should let the other schools know of your daughter’s Div. II signing after she has signed that offer and been accepted to that university, so that the soccer coaches at the JUCO and the NAIA school can recruit other players to replace her in their recruiting classes.

      Also, make sure your daughter has registered with both the NAIA and the NCAA Eligibility Centers so that she can be certified as eligible as soon as possible. This will allow both she and the schools that are recruiting here to be aware of her eligibility status.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Sally R.

    Once an NCAA D1 NLI is signed, can the scholarship amount agreed on be increased in the athlete’s first year? For example, a track athlete runs a faster time in the spring of their senior year that would qualify him for more scholarship money based on the school’s guidelines. Can the scholarship amount be increased at this point or is it too late once the NLI and other paperwork is signed? I guess the general question is – is there any benefit for a spring sport athlete to hold off signing once they know which school they want to attend in order to possibly get more scholarship money in their first year? It seems that this may be important especially in a sport like track and field where there are specific times, heights, etc. for the athletes to attain to earn more money. And, since the coaches say that athletes can earn more once at their schools based on better performances at conference meets, etc. it seems it’d be important to start off with as much scholarship money as possible to hopefully add to. Thank you!

    • Hi Sally,

      Your question is very timely as there is a new rule on this topic going into effect for Division I schools this Fall. Effective Aug. 1, for scholarships that will be applicable for the 2012-13 school year, scholarships can be increased for any reason at any time.

      The rule has been that scholarships could be increased for athletic reasons as your example describes only before the term of the award begins (could be increased in summer, for example, before Fall semester starts). Once classes started, aid could only be increased for non-athletic reasons, such as a parent losing their job or a death or serious illness in the family.

      This new rule will only apply to NCAA Division I programs. Division II will continue with the current rule described above.

      Have a great weekend!

      Rick

  • George Carson

    My son has received a scholarship offer from a JUCO in Illinois to play baseball in fall of 2012. They told him that they do not do a signing any more. We are concerned that there are no documents have the offer on it so we can be sure that there is a commitment from the school. Is this correct or should we be concerned that they may be waiting for “someone better” to come along?

    • Hi George,

      The national governing body for JUCOs – the NJCAA – allows the signing of recruits to baseball scholarships beginning on Jan. 15. It is possible that the conference this school belongs to does things a bit differently (although conference rules cannot be any less restrictive than the NJCAA), but I can’t imagine them not having some sort of document to sign if they are offering your son a baseball scholarship. Frankly, I have to say that this sounds like they are waiting for “someone better” to come along.

      You might consider going back to the coach and asking him why they do not offer written scholarships when the NJCAA permits them beginning Jan. 15. Other options are that you could contact the conference office to ask anonymously how their conference awards scholarships, you could ask another school within the same conference, or you could ask the AD at the school that made the scholarship offer. Be sure your son keeps his options open, and keeps an open mind about other schools if he hasn’t signed anything yet.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Kaylynn

    Mr. Allen,
    I am very confused about my daughter’s situation and need your help. My daughter is currently a freshman DI soccer player on athletic scholarship. She was injured in August, 2011, during the team’s training period before the start of the semester and subsequently never played in any games during the season. At the beginning of second semester, she began having other medical issues and is now medically withdrawing from her classes (and soccer). I know the university will basically have her “on hold” while they await her return. That said, she doesn’t want to return to this university and she has valid reasons for not wanting to. What are her options regarding transferring to another DI program once she’s medically cleared? How or will the medical withdrawal affect her eligibility and in-residence waiting period? Will she have to sit out an entire year? If she completely withdraws from the current university and takes summer classes at a local junior college, should she go part time or full time (to try to make up some of the classes she’s missing from the medical withdrawal as well as have enough credits to transfer). I read that if she permanently leaves her current DI school and enrolls at the junior college, she actually has to graduate with her associates degree before she can try to move on to another DI program. I have been trying to find this exact information on the NCAA website but I can’t find our exact situation. program. Any information you can provide will be greatly appreciated.

  • Jan Fortune

    Mr. Allen,

    My son is currently under a NLI at a Div 2 school playing baseball.(No scholarship $$). As a freshman, he is not playing at all, and just applied at another school for the fall, just to see if he could get accepted before the application deadline,(not to play baseball), just as a student. Is that OK?, and if his coach find out about the application/transcript request
    is that something we should be worried about? He hasn’t completely decided if he is going to leave, but we had to get the info in by deadline. Did we do anything wrong?

    • Hi Jan,

      First off, I know this is not the main point of your question, but for your info and any of our other readers looking at this blog – if your son signed an NLI without an athletic scholarship, it is/was not a valid NLI. An NLI must be accompanied by an athletic scholarship agreement in order to be valid.

      If your son applied to another school as a regular student and has had no contact with the baseball coaches at that school, he’s done nothing wrong according to NCAA rules. His coach may not see it that way however. I would do what you can to make sure the coach doesn’t find out, but if he does, be sure to explain that your son has had no contact with the athletic department at the other school and is not even sure if he’s going to continue to play.

      If the school your son applied to is in the same athletic conference as his current school, be aware that some conferences have intraconference transfer rules that may impact his eligibility if he is considering playing at another school in the same conference.

  • Mary

    Mr. Allen,

    My daughter is in her sophmore year playing her sport at a Division 1 College. She performs well academically and has worked very hard in every area to be at her peak physical form and strives to be a better athlete every day. She is also well liked by the team. The problem is the coach that recruited her has left and she is getting signs and the feeling the existing coach does not want her anymore and is worried she may be let go during the season. It is getting very uncomfortable to the point that my daughter is going to talk to the coach (whom she has shown the greatest respect for). If by chance, she has to quit does she keep the remainder of her scholarship or is it prorated or does it depend on the school? Also, does it all depend on being “let go” or her quitting. It is unfortunate that some coaches change their mind. My daughter is a fine and dedicated athlete, student, good role model and leader.

  • Marty Chagnovich

    Hi Rick, I bought your book a while back, (informed Athlete). Thanks for these posts, it is helpfull. My son is a sophmore, playing baseball. He has made the varsity team last year and this year. He is a 4.0 gpa student. He is taking all solids and 2 honors each semester. What should he be doing right now and this coming summer to get recruted?. What is a good step by step plan for this year?.

    Thanks so much, Marty

    • Hi Marty,

      Thanks for buying our book, and following our posts! If he hasn’t done so already, your son should get on a good summer team that travels to quality regional and/or national tournaments. He should e-mail coaches at or near where he will be playing to let them know he’ll be playing in their area. Div. I coaches won’t be able to respond to those e-mails until next September, however, so don’t be alarmed when your son doesn’t get a response. Also, be sure he’s demonstrating a strong work ethic in practice. Great players have to have that as much or more than natural talent.

      Even though he’s just a sophomore, get some good video from time to time of him in the field or at the plate, as it may come in handy later on during the recruiting process. Also, since he’s such a good student, consider having him take the ACT or SAT this spring or early next Fall. By the end of his junior year, he’ll be in position to receive Early Academic Qualifier status from the NCAA Eligibility Center and may be able to be certified as a Qualifier before his senior year even begins.

      Tell him to keep up the good work!

      Rick

  • Jordan

    Rick,

    You stated this earlier in these posts

    Jim Grayson says:
    June 27, 2011 at 7:06 pm
    My daughter signed with a NAIA school to play basketball and now has an offer from a NCAA DI school can she be released from the NAIA to sign with the NCAA school?

    Reply
    Rick Allen says:
    June 27, 2011 at 8:57 pm
    Hi Jim,
    The NAIA letter of intent is totally separate and apart from the National Letter of Intent that NCAA schools use, so no release is necessary. However, you should consider being up front with the NAIA school and letting them know what you’re daughter is planning to do. That way you’re not burning any bridges in case something happens in the future and she wants to transfer to that NAIA school.
    Rick

    I attend an NAIA school that has a women’s lacrosse team. The NAIA does not recognize Women’s Lacrosse as a varsity sport, but they are on athletic scholarship at this school. Their coach recently left to coach an NCAA DII school, and they do not want to play here anymore. The AD is restricting their releases to the school the coach went to. Is this allowable due to the fact the school is NOT even in the same Athletic Association?

    Thanks for your help

    • Hi Jordan,

      This is a really unusual situation. Even though the NAIA doesn’t sponsor women’s lacrosse, the wording of the NCAA and NAIA rules may still require a release from your school if members of the team are considered “student-athletes” or if they have participated in “intercollegiate competition.” The school will probably take the position that team membes are “student-athletes” since they are receiving scholarships, and have participated in “intercollegiate competition” if they have competed against teams from other colleges, even if they are considered club or extramural teams.

      I suggest you speak to the Faculty Athletic Representative at your school to see if he or she can help resolve the situation. You might also consider contacting the NAIA national office and speaking to a staff member responsible for NAIA rules to see if they can be of assistance. They can probably tell you if you are considered a “student-athlete” under their rules and whether you need a release.

      Good luck, and let me know what you find out.

      Rick

  • Anders Larson

    Can my son sign to play baseball at a juco but then if hes recruited later on this spring to play D1 still go D1
    I dont think they conflict do they?

    • Hi Anders,

      Yes, he can sign with both a JUCO and a Div. I program. Their letters of intent are two totally different documents.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Axel

    Hello!
    I asked my Division 1 school for an release last week and they did not want to give me the release because of the reasons that I had given them were not acceptable. I still want to try to get my release by the NTI. What are the chances that NTI will change their decision and how long time does it usually take? Because I am running out of time and is getting a bit desperate.

    Take care
    Axel

    • Hi Axel,

      What are you referring to when you mention the NTI? I’m not familiar with that term. Do you mean the NLI (National Letter of Intent)? If you’re referring to the NLI, your obligation under the NLI will be satisfied at the end of the school year when you complete one year of enrollment at the school that you signed an NLI with.

      What were you specifically asking for when you asked your Div. I school for a “release” last week? Were you asking for written permission to speak with other schools about a possible transfer? If so, your Div. I school is required to provide you with a hearing opportunity if they deny your request to speak with another school. If that is the case, check your student-athlete handbook for a description of the appeal procedure. You should have received a student-athlete handbook at a team meeting at the start of the school year, or it may be online on your school’s athletic website under the “Compliance” tab.

      If you need more info, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Daniel Hopkins

    Hi, Can someone help me. I am at juco at the moment. However, I will not graduate until the summer of this year. Will a coach sign me even though I haven’t graduated and might not graduate?

    Dan

    • Hi Dan,

      There’s no sure answer to that question, because it will depend upon a number of factors, such as: your sport, the amount of recruiting interest you’re receiving, what level schools (Div. I, II, NAIA) are or will be recruiting you, were you a Qualifier under NCAA rules when you graduated high school, and what academic requirements do you need to achieve in order to be immediately eligible this Fall.

      If you’d like to discuss these factors, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Ralph

    My son has been offered what we’re told is, in terms of dollars, a pretty good athletic scholarship to play baseball at an NAIA school. The scholarship, however, is for the junior varsity. I’m told NAIA schools do this routinely as jv scholarships do not count against the NAIA limit. To your knowledge, is this true? Should we ask the coach if other in-coming freshmen have been awarded varsity scholarships? Should we ask if no freshmen are awarded varsity scholarships and these are awarded in later years at the school?

    Thank you, in advance for any answers you might provide.

    Ralph

    • Hi Ralph,

      It is true that JV scholarships do not count against the NAIA scholarship limits. I believe it is appropriate for you to ask if the coach awards varsity scholarships to freshmen. If the coach objects to that question, then I would consider whether that’s a coach you want your son to play for.

      You might also see if you can find statistics for the current team and for past years to see whether the coach does use freshmen in the varsity lineup, or typically goes only with players that have been in his program a year or two.

      Rick

  • Ralph

    A follow-up question regarding NAIA junior-varsity scholarships (and hoping you don’t mind I didn’t ask this with my initial questions): would a jv scholarship also require a signed NLI?

    Thank you.

    Ralph

  • Sarah

    Hi,

    When I was a senior I signed a NLI with a D1 school. Some events happened that I don’t understand and before my graduation I had to request to be released from the NLI with that school. Right after I contacted another D1 school and there offer from before I committed to the other school was still there. I had to sign something else because they said I could only sign 1 NLI a year. I attend this school now.

    My question is, if I hypothetically wanted to transfer because I don’t get in games at this school, do I have to redshirt at the new school I transfer too? Or can I be eligible to play right away as a sophomore

    • Hi Sarah,

      If your sport is women’s basketball and you transfer to another Div. I school, you will have to sit out a year at the next school before you will be eligible to play. If you are in any other Div. I sport, or if you are transferring to any Div. II program, including basketball, you can transfer without sitting out a year as long as you meet the academic requirements for the One-Time Transfer Rule.

      Good luck,

      Rick

  • Adal Bell

    Hi,

    My son played basketball at JUCO he has since then obtained his Associates Degree and was offered an 1 year atheltic scholarship at a division II school 2011-2012 they have agreed not to renew his scholarship for 2012-2013. They have asked him to signed some forms for which I am concern with Intent to Transfer Form, Roster Change Form and a letter of Dismissal dtating the reason of why they are not renewing his scholarship. Should he sign the Roster of Change, and the Transfer Form since he has one more year of egilibilty left. Would he be allowed to transfer to another Division II School or do he have to attend a NAIA school.

    • Hi Adal,

      When you say “they have agreed not to renew his scholarship for 2012-2013″ what exactly do you mean? Who agreed to what? I can’t imagine that your son “agreed” that the coach would not give him his scholarship for next year unless they felt he could receive an academic scholarship of equal value to the athletic scholarship that he had for 2011-2012.

      The only form that I would allow him to sign if he were my son would be a Voluntary Withdrawal form if it was HIS decision to quit the team or transfer elsewhere. Is it his choice to transfer elsewhere, or is he only looking at transfer because they took away his scholarship for next year?

      Your son can transfer to another Div. II school and he can be immediately eligible if his current school allows him to use the One-Time Transfer Exception to be immediately eligible at the next school, and if they can certify that he would be academically eligible next Fall if he were returning to his current school rather than transferring elsewhere.

      Hope this helps.

      Rick

  • Adal Bell

    Hey Rick,

    You are right he did not agree and it was not his decison to quit the team. He is looking to transfer because they took away his scholarship.

    I did not answer the question accurately sorry about the second post I wanted to make sure that I have everything that you had asked in the above email.

    Thanks

    Adal

    • Adal,

      Thanks for all of the detail that you provided in your follow-up e-mail, but you’ll see that I didn’t post it here, as I felt that some of it was a private matter. With that said, I think it would be a good idea if we talk about your son’s situation. I’ll follow up with a private e-mail to you.

      Rick

  • Jodi anderson

    Rick,
    My daughter has signed an athletic letter of intent with a div 2 NAIA school. She is now wanting to consider looking elsewhere as the coach has moved her out of the position that he and she agreed upon prior to her signing. Is she able to contact other colleges for consideration at this point? She realizes the offer she has now may never be offered again if she walks and she is not doing this in a hasty manner, just looking at all the options.
    Thanks,
    Jodi

    • Hi Jodi,

      It’s not totally clear to me from your post, but I’m guessing that your daughter is still in high school and has not yet enrolled at the NAIA school that she signed with. Unless the school that she signed with has a rule for members of that conference that restricts her options, it’s my understanding that she can sign an athletic letter of intent with more than one NAIA school, and can then decide which school she is going to attend.

      As you can imagine, this can be a tricky situation, as the coach is counting on your daughter to honor her commitment in signing, but at the same time, you and your daughter have to do what’s best for her. She does have options, just be careful as you proceed.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Devahn

    Hi Rick I’m currently at at JC. I just signed with a D2 football school. Do you know a great deal about eligibility for this sport.

    • Hi Devahn,

      Yes I do! But the coaches that have recruited you to the Div. II school should be telling you what you need to know and what you need to do to be eligible when you enroll there this fall. Send me a private message with your concerns at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Bill

    Rick,

    My son is a Division II lax player. He signed an NLI his freshman year and is finishing up his academic year in May having competed on his team throughout the year. Is he free to talk to a Division I coach after his Freshman year is over, before he resigns another NLI for his sophomore year?

    • Hi Bill,

      Your son can only talk to a Div. I (or another Div. II) coach if he has written permission to do so from his current school. If he wants to pursue this, he really needs to start by talking to his current coach. The first thing that will happen if he contacts a Div. I coach without having that written permission is that the Div. I coach will probably contact your son’s current coach to ask about his ability, his character, his academic status, etc. to determine whether he’s a fit for Div. I. As you can imagine, if this happens before your son has spoken with his coach, the coach will probably not be thrilled.

      Rick

  • Chris

    My son is currently a freshman at JUCO playing baseball. He was not a qualifier out of high school. In order to transfer to a D1 or D2, is it a requirement that he has finished his degree and graduated? He does have a 3.0 gpa, and as of now has only completed 29 semester hours. Basically, what else does he need to do be eligible to transfer? Thank you for your help.

    • Hi Chris,

      I apologize for the delayed response. NCAA Div. I rules require a nonqualifier to graduate from the JUCO, but Div. II rules provide another option for partial or nonqualifiers that does not require graduation. There are additional requirements for both Div. I and II.

      Within the next few days, our new Informed Athlete’s Guide to Transfers should be available in the Store on our website. That will have all the info on what else your son will need to do for his transfer, or you can contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Eric

    Mr. Allen, my son is about to finish his first year at a Div II school under an NLI he signed as a Senior in HS. My question is what to do now? I know that the requirements for completing his first NLI are; finishing the academic year and since he his under 21, I also have to sign. Should I be contacting the Coach in order to ensure that my son gets a new NLI and should I discuss (negotiate) with him the scholarship amount?

    • Hi Eric,

      Here’s the way this process works. Your son, and any of his teammates who are on an athletic scholarship, must be notified in writing about the status of their scholarship for next year. The coach can decide to increase (rarely), decrease, leave the same, or cancel. The NCAA requires that this notification be provided by July 1, but fortunately, many schools will try to act sooner than that in fairness to the athletes.

      Most coaches will have an end of season “exit meeting” with each player before they head off for the summer. In this meeting, the coach will usually let the player know about their scholarship status for next year. To answer your specific question, no, you should not do anything, except to make sure that if your son has not been informed about an exit meeting, then he should request one with the coach before he leaves campus for summer. Your son should be handling things with the coach at this point, but you can be providing your support and advice.

      Rick

  • Brandi

    Hello Mr. Allen,
    I have recently signed the NLi with a D2 school who isn’t offering me much money to run track, and the next day a D1 school offered me more money to play volleyball.Can I be released from the D2 school?

    • Hi Brandi,

      You will have to complete an NLI Release Request Form and see if the Div. II school will agree to release you from your NLI commitment. If they don’t agree to it, you can appeal that decision, but your appeal will stand a better chance of success if you have another reason than “they made me a better offer.”

      You can find the Release Request Form at http://www.national-letter.org. Look on the right side of the page for Document Library, and find the Release Request Form. Good luck!

      Rick

  • Lee

    My son is a senior in high school playing baseball. He is planning to attend a NAIA school under a LOI in the fall 2012. Would he be able to transfer to a NCAA DIV 1 or 2 after a year? Would he have to sit out for a year? What are the transfer rules from a NAIA to a NCAA?

    • Hi Lee,

      If your son attends an NAIA school with a LOI, he will not be able to be immediately eligible upon transfer to a Div. I school and would have to sit out a year. It would be possible for him to transfer to a Div. II school and be immediately eligible, as long as the NAIA school will give him a release and can certify that he would be eligible the following term if he were returning to their school rather than transferring.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Jason

    If my son has signed a NCAA DI NLT to play baseball and then decides he wants to attend an NAIA school can he play at the NAIA school without penalty?

    Thanks,

    • Hi Jason,

      Yes, your son can attend and play at the NAIA school without penalty. If he decides to transfer to an NCAA Div. I (or II) school other than the one he signed with in the future, however, there may be some consequences. Just something to think about down the road.

      Rick

  • david

    Goodmoring Mr. Allen, my name is David Rowe, i recently sign a NLI to a juco and i dont want to go there no more due to the fact that there is no athletic aid and i my parents cant afford it, my question is (if i get released from the letter i did sign if they let me, will i be able to sign with another juco who does offer athletic aid?)

    • Hi David,

      If the JUCO that you signed with will provide you with a signed NJCAA Release Agreement form, you could sign with another JUCO and be eligible this Fall. If they do not provide a signed Release Agreement, you can’t be eligible in your first year at another JUCO.

      Good luck!

      Rick

  • Matt Reed

    I signed with a NAIA school to play soccer in may, I was just informed that the head coach that recruited me has resigned, is it possible for me to transfer to another school before this season begins?

  • John

    A student athlete signs an LOI to play baseball at a D-1 school. Several months later, the head coach gets fired and the entire staff is shown the door.

    I understand that the university is obligated to provide an athletic scholarship for the student for one year. That doesn’t meant the new coach is obligated in any way to put the kid on the baseball roster, correct?

    Also, the athlete has enrolled at the university, but has not yet attended classes or practiced with the team… would he be eligible to play next spring with another D-1 program if he receives a release from his NLI from his current university?

    • Hi John,

      You are correct. The new coach is not obligated to put the athlete on the baseball roster. However, because that athlete will be receiving an athletic scholarship, the athlete will either have to be included in the 35-man roster, or the team will only be allowed to carry 34 players once the season begins. This is because any baseball athlete receiving an athletic scholarship must be counted as a member of the 35-man roster even if they are injured or have been cut from the team.

      The athlete could be eligible to play next spring with another Div. I program if he receives his release from the NLI, depending upon what his enrollment status is this Fall. I’m going to follow up with a private e-mail to you.

      Rick

    • Ron,

      The National Letter of Intent requires the signature of a parent unless a student-athlete is 21 or older, regardless of whether the athlete is married or already attending a JUCO. Only one parent is required to sign.

      Rick

  • Orky Labrador

    My niece signed and played softball at a D1 this spring 2012. She has felt unhappy at the school and decided to ask for a releas when the season was over. The release was denied and the coach said he would not release her. She is trying to go to a D2 and play softball. If she paid her own way at the D2 does she still have to sit out a year? What are the rules?

    • Orky,

      There are two key steps in the transfer process. The first is to ask permission to speak to other schools about a possible transfer. If that permission is denied, your niece can still transfer, but she will have to do so on her own (no help from the Div. II coaches or athletic staff), and the Div. II won’t be able to provide an athletic scholarship in her first year of enrollment.

      Secondly, if the Div. I school does not agree to her use of the One-Time Transfer Exception to be immediately eligible, then she would have to sit out a year from competition at the Div. II school. In either case, the school is required to offer your niece a hearing opportunity if her request is denied.

      Rick

  • alexis

    hi rick,
    so i signed of letter of intent and got a full ride at a junior college but the team is not very good and the school dosnt have any classes i need or theyre full, so basically im taking classes that dont transfer and i do not need to take in order to be full time to play. im deciding i dont want to do this anymore. i found another junior college that has a program i want to do. if i quit and go to this other school just for acedemic reasons and not to play softball do i still have penalties against me if i ever want to play softball for a school again? (not this year but the next)

    • Hi Alexis,

      If you eventually decide to transfer after junior college to an NCAA or NAIA school for the opportunity to play softball, any penalties that you might face will be due to not having enough transferable academic credits for eligibility at the next school. The penalties won’t be because you quit the program where you are and transferred to another JUCO. If you want to know what those academic requirements are so you can plan accordingly, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

      • alexis

        i played there last year. i was just concerened that if i quit and take a year off of softball to go to another school 2 years of my eligibility would be taken away because i signed the letter. im not sure if 2 year gets taken away even if your not planning on playing at the other school?

        • Alexis,

          If you’re looking ahead to possibly playing at an NCAA or NAIA school after JUCO, here’s what you need to keep in mind. For NCAA Div. I, there is a “five-year clock.” You must complete your playing eligibility within five years of when you first enrolled at any college as a full-time student. For NCAA Div. II, III, or NAIA, they use the “ten-semester rule.” You must use your eligibility within 10 semesters of full-time enrollment. If you go to school only as a part-time student, that won’t count toward the 10-semester limit.

          So, if you played last year and were a freshman, then take this year off, you’ll have three years of eligibility remaining.

          If you have already resigned with your JUCO for this year, you should request an NJCAA Release Agreement.

          Rick

  • Sarah

    My son has signed a NLI with a NAIA school for football. He has been practicing with the team & enroLled for classes. However he has not competed or attended class at all yet. He now wishes 2 leave. Any restrictions on attending a D1, D2 or juco college or talking 2 another coach? What effect will this have on his eligibility if he chooses 2 forego the sport until maybe spring ball? Thank u in advance for any assistance!

    • Sarah,

      Because your son has participated in team practices, he will be considered a transfer student if he leaves for another school. This means that he’ll have to have written permission from his current school in order for other schools to talk with him about a possible transfer. As a scholarship athlete, he would not be eligible in his first year if he goes to a Div. I school, but could be eligible at a JUCO or Div. II school. If you want more detailed info, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Greg

    Rick,

    I have a daughter that is playing D1 soccer, but desperately wants to transfer to another D1 school. When are we allowed to contact the Athletic department at her current University to request a release to talk to other schools? When do we have to ask the coach to release her? If she gets the release from her current University, can she transfer in the Spring and play next year in the Fall of 3013 at a new University?

    • Hi Greg,

      She can ask the coach to release her and request permission to talk to other schools at any time she chooses, but obviously it may affect her relationship with the coaching staff from that point forward. If you want more information on the academic requirements and tips to navigate the transfer process, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Stephanie

    Rick,

    My daughter is attending a Division 1 school on a track scholarship, but she is not having the experience that she had wanted. She doesnt feel right at the school and shes not exactly liking track either. Shes feeling pretty miserable right nowand wants to quit track, and transfer to another school next semester, but we are worried that she will have to pay the scholarship money back if she quits now. Will she have to pay it back? Should she just stick it out this year? I just dont want her to be miserable. Thank you.

    • Hi Stephanie,

      Assuming that your daughter signed a National Letter of Intent with her school, she would have to get a complete release from her commitment to attend this school for one full academic year, if she has any plans to run at another school in the future. In addition, if she quits the team, the school has the right to cancel her scholarship immediately. If you want to discuss her situation, or get more details on the transfer rules, contact me directly at rick@informedathlete.com.

      Rick

  • Sandra

    I’am now attenting an NAIA school In TN that I got a scholarship to play soccer at. I transferred here last Spring of 2011/2012. I’am also red shirting due to not bein eligiable to play this season because of grades. We are half through the semester now and soon we will be done with it. There are personal issues going on at home that I need to be present and closer to and issues with the coach that I have. I’am just miserable here and feel out of place. Where as it’s causing me to be depressed and I’m just not happy here. I want to ask the coach for a release but I’m worried about getting my scholarship cut and have to pay that money back. I would want to transfer to another NAIA or DII school back home in CA but just don’t know the rules of eligibility and where I stand with the scholarship money. Thank You.

    • Hi Sandra,

      If you transfer to a Div. II school, and are not eligible to play at the time you transfer, you will have to sit out another year at the Div. II school. It would probably be better to look at another NAIA school, as you would only have to sit out for one semester.

      The coach should not be able to take away your scholarship as long as you keeep practicing, don’t quit the team, or violate any team rules. Asking for permission to talk with other schools is not the same as quitting the team. Or, at least, it shouldn’t be.

      Rick

  • Lynn

    My daughter signed an NLI to play volleyball for a DII school with a partial scholarship (she also received money for academics, so we did not have to take out much of a loan). We chose DII because we felt she could better balance her sport and academics there than at a DI school. She has played this season and has done well in volleyball and in her classes, but the commitment to volleyball is much more than what we expected, and she is feeling burned out. If she decides not to play next year and does not participate in the Spring season, I am assuming she would have to pay for any scholarship money for the Spring semester. Can you confirm that, and do you know if I would be able to increase my loan to cover the scholarship money?

    • Hi Lynn,

      You are correct, if she doesn’t participate in the Spring season and quits the team, the school has the right to immediately cancel her scholarship at the point that she quits. If she were to stick with the team through the end of the Spring season, they might allow her to keep the scholarship through the end of the year. Also, I do believe it would be possible to increase your loan to cover the loss of scholarship, but you may want to anonymously confirm that with the campus financial aid office.

      Rick

  • cristina

    Rick,
    My son is being offerred a juco full ride baseball scholarship. I understand he will need to sign in January. By being commited, will D1 schools stop any immediate interest and potential recruiting? If he is offered a D1, can he accept and “pull out” of juco commitment?
    thank you

    • Hi Cristina,

      Some Div. I schools may stop recruiting your son, but others may not. It depends upon how highly they value your son, and also what relationship they have, if any, with the coach at the JUCO. If he is offered a Div. I scholarship, he can accept that and withdraw his JUCO commitment.

      Rick

  • El

    Rick,

    I currently am on an athletic scholarship. I plan on transferring at the end of the academic year. If I quit the team during the second semester, do I still get the scholarship for the first semester?

  • Steve

    Rick,

    Thanks for the information on NLI’s. What is the beginning of the signing date this year for baseball? I’ve heard both November 12 and November 14. Thanks,

    • Hi Steve,

      What may be causing the confusion is the first day for signing the NLI, compared with the Div. I dead period surrounding the the first day of signing. Nov. 14 is the first day that an athlete can sign the NLI. The dead period, when Div. I coaches can have no face-to-face contact with a prospect, begins on the 12th, and continues through the 15th.

      Rick

  • John Donnelly

    Hi Rick, My son is being recruited for football and baseball.If he were to sign with a 1AA school for football in February on the signing day and then receive an offer for baseball in the spring what would his options be? He is a senior in high school.Can you wait to see what happens with baseball and make the decision for either sport after the football signing date?
    Thanks John Donnelly

    • Hi John,

      If your son signs with a school for football in February, he won’t be able to sign with another NCAA Div I or II school for baseball or any other sport in the spring. Once he signs a National Letter of Intent, he can’t sign another unless he is granted a release by the first school he signs with.

      For football, the signing period runs from Feb. 6 through April 1, so your son would have that long to decide on a football offer. The spring signing period for baseball begins April 17.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Sabrina

    Hi Rick!
    Quick question:
    I am blessed to have the opportunity to sign an NLI and play volleyball at a competitive Division 1 program.
    This sounds like such a stupid question but …
    Do I need to apply (via common app) to the university before signing or can I apply afterwards?
    Thanks!

    • Hi Sabrina,

      I suggest you ask the coach who is recruiting you. The answer to that question will depend upon the policies of the school you will be signing with.

      Congrats, and good luck!

      Rick

    • Hi Jackie,

      The new rule applies to all sports, but only in Div. I, not in Div. II. Div. II scholarships are still limited to no more than one year at a time, and are renewable each year upon the recommendation of the coach.

      Rick

  • Jo

    Hi! Two questions please :) I am a high school senior looking to play college ball.
    1. If I sign a NLI with a Div ll school and the in school grant I was originally estimated to receive is reduced because of the FAFsha……can I get out of my NLI so I can attend a more affordable school?
    2. If I sign a NLI with a Div ll school and receive a better offer from a NAIA school can I sign and play at the NAIA school instead (of course after I told my Div ll coach).
    Thank you!

    • Hi Jo,

      To answer your questions:

      1. The school you signed the NLI with will have to agree to release you from your commitment to attend there for one year.
      2. Yes.

      Rick

  • roger

    if a kid signs a baseball letter of itent and later plays in a football all star game w/o permisission from the baseball school and/or gests hurt what could happen to the baseball scholarship?

  • Chico

    My son plays baseball at Jr. college, and just signed a NLI to a DII university. If he receives offers in the spring from a DI university, can he sign to a DI? How can he properly go about this? Are their any penalties? Thank You.

    • Hi Chico,

      Since your son signed an NLI with a Div. II school, he can’t sign another NLI with a Div. I, unless the Div. II that he signed with will let him out of his commitment.

      Rick

  • Soccer Guy

    Our daughter is a 2nd year soccer player at a Division 1 school. She verbally committed to this school in November of her junior year of high school — we had the offer in writing at the time. One of the reasons she chose this school (and turned down other strong offers very early from other D1 schools, and most importantly cancelled visits and scheduled showcase meetings with other schools) was because we were told that athletic awards would not decrease in future years unless she did something against the rules that put the program in a bad light. (We confirmed this at the time in writing. We thought the coaches were honorable… but we have learned better since then!) They honored the verbal commitment and she signed her letter of intent her senior year — she was awarded a very strong athletic scholarship and additional academic scholarships that totaled 100% of all expenses. (They made a strong offer to encourage her to commit early… as they told us she had been on their “radar” for a few years and they did not want her to play for a competitor. Again, they seemed to be VERY honest… but we know better now.)

    Unfortunately, our daughter was injured her senior year of high school after she signed her NLI. While she was not 100% during the fall season freshman year, she was able to play –but because the school had a senior at her position they elected to give her a freshman (NOT medical) redshirt. By doing this they extended her scholarship to 5 years and her eligibility remained 4 more years.

    She was the starter in the spring season of her freshman year, and was told that the position was hers to win in the fall of her redshirt freshman season. Interestingly, a high level transfer at the position came in last summer from a larger D1 program (a nice young lady who had turned them down 2 years before), and this transfer earned the starting position. All season our daughter and another player (a junior) at the same position were treated very poorly and were basically ignored by the coaches.

    The season is now over, and the coach recently suggested to our daughter that she might want to consider quitting. (HUH?) The reality is that the coach has only 1 senior graduating and 4 or 5 incoming players who she needs scholarships for. Frankly, the coach is the one who made the mistake and she currently has 4 players at the same specialized position. Our daughter has been a model student and has made the Dean’s List each semester.

    Are we expecting too much to expect the coach to honor their early promises? Would a D1 program REALLY cancel her scholarship with 3 years of eligibility remaining, or are they merely hoping that she might choose to quit or transfer so they don’t need to cancel her scholarship? Our daughter likes the school and her program, loves the other girls on the team, and is advancing toward her degree. Since she committed SO early in high school, her chances to transfer are likely rather limited, especially since she can’t speak to another school wihout telling her current coach. Plus she wants to stay and play.

    Any suggestions? We also wonder why they would have given her a freshman redshirt if they did not see her fitting into their program. This is just not logical! Do you suggest that we wait until July 1 to see if the scholarship is cancelled, or are we likely better off to discuss this with the university in advance?

    Thanks,

    Guy

    • Guy,

      As long as your daughter is doing everything that is asked of her on and off the field, remaining eligible academically and not violating any “team rules”, the school can’t take away her scholarship in the middle of the academic year. It’s entirely possible, however, that they won’t renew her scholarship for next year.

      My hunch is that the coach is trying to get her to quit so that the coach doesn’t have to to cancel the scholarship. The coach may believe that the AD won’t agree to the cancellation of her scholarship, so this is the only way the coach can obtain the scholarship to use for somebody else. (Some AD’s will agree with what you said – the coach is the one who made the mistake, so the coach needs to honor the scholarship. You may want to do some research and see if that has been the philosophy of the AD in the past. Has this coach cancelled other scholarships in the past, and if so, were they for girls that were doing everything right like your daughter, or were they athletes who were not doing well academically or not following team rules?)

      I suggest that your daughter wait until the end of the spring season and then talk with the coach to discuss this. I wouldn’t wait until she is officially notified of her scholarship status, as that will give her less time to transfer if she chooses to do so.

      Rick

  • Carol

    My son (hs senior) has recently de-committed from a D1 baseball program due to personal reasons. No NLI was signed. He notified the D1 coach prior to the (early NLI) signing date as it was only a verbal at the time. He has been approached by another D1 school for a non-scholarship offer? Is it ok to also consider JUCO options as he may want to see if he could be a draft prospect earlier than the 3 years if he commits to the D1 offer even though he is not on scholarship? Which route due you forsee better options? He is also concerned that he is late in the process for D1 schools forthe recruitment of position players for next year?

  • Nancy

    Rick
    I have a son that was a freshman walk on player on the “walk on team” at a D1 for football no recuiting by the coach, no scholarships, not on the roster but had to sign the NLI in order to practice with the team. He has now decided that the school doesn’t offer what he wants to major in so he wants to transfer. He went and requested a letter of release so he could talk with other coaches, I think he was suppose to request a letter of permission to talk with other coaches? However, now I am concerned he is in a mess. He wants to come home and take a term off so he can get his applications in to other DI universities. Is this possible? Should he go back to the coach and talk with him about getting the wrong paper signed? He thinks the coaches now will be mean to him… what is your thoughts.

  • Anna B.

    My son recently signed with a NAIA school to wrestle next year. He also just tore his ACL and is going to try and finish the season but may have to have surgery before the season is over. Is he going to lose his scholarship and is he obligated to let the college coach know what is going on?

    • Hi Anna,

      It is possible that your son could lose his scholarship. However, I think that if he communicates with his college coach to let him know about the injury and that he plans to have the surgery as soon as the season is over if not earlier, that the coach will honor the scholarship. The coach will probably find out anyway if comes to watch your son compete or by talking with his HS coach, so better to be honest with him.

      Rick

  • Cori

    I need help and can’t find the answers anywhere. I signed to play womens lacrosse at a D2 school. I withdrew from that school 3 months into the first semester. I am looking to go back to school elsewhere as soon as possible. The school I am looking at now is D3. What are the rules behind contacting the coach and what will my playing restrictions be? Thank you!!!

    • Hi Cori,

      Unless you’ve been gone from that Div. II school for at least one year, you’ll have to have permission from that school before coaches at other four-year schools can talk with you about a possible transfer. You will probably need to attend the Div. III school for one academic year before you can be eligible to play since you withdrew from your first school in the middle of the semester.

      Rick

  • Mark

    Hi Rick,

    I just want to be clear on the rules for 2013. My son signed a LOI with a NAIA baseball team. Is he bound to stay there or if he decides to leave is he under penalty if he decides to by way of NCAA D1 or D2 or JUCO?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
    Mark

    • Hi Mark,

      Your son won’t be bound to the NAIA school for all four years if he desires to move on. The requirements and possible restrictions will vary depending upon where he might choose to go. Since you are obviously thinking ahead about his options, you may want to purchase our transcript “What You Should Know About Transfers” which can be found in the Store of our website.

      Rick

  • Nate

    Hi Rick,

    I recently signed with a D2 school in the early signing of November for wrestling and I have recently gotten injured and may need surgery which will put me out for the season. What will happen because of this? I am going to tell my coach but I don’t know what to expect for the outcome whether I will be dropped or not. Any reply would be appreciated.

    • Hi Nate,

      First of all, if you are certified as an NCAA Qualifier, meeting all eligibility requirements, and you do enroll at this school next Fall, the NLI requires them to provide you with your scholarship next year in exchange for your early commitment to attend their school. However, many Div. II schools are so limited on the scholarships they have available, that they may ask you to delay your enrollment and go to JUCO for a year until you are healthy.

      Rick

  • John

    Rick,
    My son has an official visit this weekend as a preferred walk-on for a D1 football program. He also has interest from the same school and others for D1 baseball. The school indicated they would like my son to sign an intent to enroll and pay admission fee so they can announce him as a football recruit on signing day. If a D1 baseball scholarship presents itself this spring can my son leave the football program without penalty to take advantage of the scholarship in baseball?

    • Hi John,

      As long as your son does not sign a National Letter of Intent that commits him to this school for one academic year (which he can only be offered if it is accompanied by an athletic scholarship agreement), he could sign the baseball scholarship offer this spring without penalty.

      Good luck to your son!

      Rick

  • Nick

    My son is a Senior in HS and has signed to play baseball at a Div II school next year. There is a NAIA program that is using our high school field for practice and has offered to allow some of the HS boys to practice with them if they sign a waiver. Would this violate ay NCAA rules?

    Nick

    • Hi Nick,

      That won’t violate any NCAA rules. It could if the school using your HS field was a different NCAA program than the one your son signed with, but since it’s an NAIA school, no problem.

      Rick

  • Kathleen

    My daughter is transferring this fall after one year at a DII college that she signed a NLI with. Her new DI college is sending her a NLI to sign. Is this standard procedure? I thought you only ever signed one NLI. Thanks.

    • Hi Kathleen,

      The Div. I school could be sending your daughter an institutional financial aid agreement, but you’re correct, they shouldn’t be sending a National Letter of Intent.

      Rick

  • Dan

    Hey my son attends and Div. 1 FCS school for football. Hey is not enjoying it and is wanting to transfer. Does he need a release form signed if he completes one full academic year? Thanks.

    • Hi Dan,

      He’ll need a “permission to contact” release before coaches at other NCAA schools can talk with him about a possible transfer. That’s regardless of whether he’s a scholarship athlete or a walk-on, and whether or not he has completed an academic year of attendance.

      Rick

  • Jeanne

    My son received a NAIA scholarship but has now quit the sport. We have been told that under NAIA rules, he can still keep that scholarship for his remaining 3 years at this college. Is this true?

  • John

    My cousin have signed a national letter of intent for football with a division 2 school. He is a freshman and have completed the first semester in college. He is going to go to a d1AA school next school year and play football for them. He do not want to play spring ball anymore for the school he at right now because he will be transferring next school year. He want to stay there and just finish out the year just being a regular student. If he get the release form from the school can he finish the school year with the scholarship money he already have? or will he have to play spring ball?

    • John,

      The NCAA rules give the school the right to immediately cancel his scholarship if he quits the team (doesn’t participate in spring ball). Whether they would make him pay for the whole semester, or just a prorated amount from the date that he quits the team would be the decision of the school.

      Rick

  • Hello Rick,

    Hope all is fine your way. My son is currently in limbo on deciding whether to play football at a juco or run track at a DII school. The Juco is planning to send letter of commitment over this evening. Should he sign this form? And what are the negatives for signing and not attending school? If he does get accepted into the DII school will he choose this school.

    • Hi Monte,

      Your son can sign a JUCO letter of commitment, and then sign a Div. II National Letter of Intent later on this spring if he gets accepted into the school. The documents are separate, and one is not binding on the other.

      Rick

  • Kaitlyn

    Hi Mr. Rick,
    If I am verbally committed to a school and about to sign in a few days but my head coach left to another school. If I sign but decide I want to play at another school can I since there is no head coach? I heard something about that but wasn’t sure if it was true.
    Thanks

    • Hi Kaitlyn,

      If you sign an NCAA Div. I and II National Letter of Intent with school A, but then decide that you’re not happy there and want to transfer to school B, or decide that you don’t want to attend school A to begin with, you will need a release from school A if you want to be eligible at any other Div. I or II school. Keep in mind that you are signing with a school, not with a head coach. If the head coach leaves or is fired, it doesn’t affect your commitment to attend that school for at least one year.

      Rick

  • Jarred

    Hello Mr. Rick,

    I decided to play golf at a D2 school that can’t offer me any athletic scholarship at this time but I am receiving a lot of academic scholarship money. I wanted to have a signing ceremony with my best friend in April. Can I sign like a fake NLI so I can still celebrate everything? Thank you!

    • Hi Jarred,

      It’s OK to sign a “fake” NLI, or something else, like an academic scholarship agreement from the school. It would be a good idea to discuss this with the coach at the Div. II school that you’re signing with, just so he or she doesn’t get caught off-guard.

      Congrats, and good luck!

      Rick

  • Jamie

    My son has the NLI to sign with a JUCO today for football, but is still being contacted by Div II schools for football. Would it be a violation if he decideded to go to a different school for the same sport but different Div?

    • Hi Jamie,

      The JUCO letter of intent, and the National Letter of Intent issued by NCAA Div. I and II schools are totally separate documents. It is permissible to sign one of each.

      Rick

  • Ryan

    Rick,
    I just signed a NJCAA letter of intent on signing day with a junior college. After signing day, I know have NCAA D1 schools popping up looking for me to walk on. So I wanted to know what I need to do in order to walk on at the D1 school?

    • Ryan,

      To walk-on at a Div. I school, you just need to communicate with the coaches at that school and apply for admission. You’ll also need to make sure you register with the NCAA Eligibility Center and are classified as a Qualifier for Div. I. If your sport is football, you may also want to review the blog here on our website titled “NCAA Rules: Definition of a Recruited Athlete.” If you are NOT considered a recruited athlete, it could possibly make a transfer easier later on.

      Rick

  • Ryan

    Rick, I signed to play football at a JUCO on signing day. Now I am getting D1 interest from schools that want me to walk in. So I was wondering what I would need to do in order to walk on at the D1

    • Ryan,

      To walk-on at a Div. I school, you just need to communicate with the coaches at that school and apply for admission. You’ll also need to make sure you register with the NCAA Eligibility Center and are classified as a Qualifier for Div. I. You may also want to review the blog here on our website titled “NCAA Rules: Definition of a Recruited Athlete.” If you are NOT considered a recruited football athlete, it could possibly make a transfer easier later on.

      Rick

  • Tracy Key

    Hello so i signed a NLI to a Division 1AA school, but i didnt get my parent to sign and im under 21, now i have Division 1A schools offering me, since im under 21 and i dont have a signature on the NLI, will i have a chance to back out of the NLI and sign to another school?

    • Tracy,

      The NLI that you signed is not valid if you didn’t have a parent or legal guardian also sign it. So, yes, you can sign with another school.

      However, the school that you already signed with will probably be contacting you or your parents to have them sign since they have up to 14 days to submit an official NLI to their conference office.

      Rick

  • Stefanie S

    Hi my daughter has signed her national letter of intent to play volleyball at a D1 school. She is still a senior in high school but the coach who originally recruited her has left for another job. Can the new coach release her from the team and her letter of intent or is she still able to play at the school?

    Stef

    • Hi Stefanie,

      As long as your daughter is an NCAA Div. I Qualifier so she can be eligible as a freshman, and as long as she meets the school’s admission requirements, she can still go to that school. However, she should meet the new coach to determine whether she thinks this will still be a good “fit” for her.

      Rick

  • Johnny

    I just signed my NLI for men’s D1 golf in November and am now having second thoughts. Am I able to ask the schools I was previously talking to if the scholarship they offered a few months ago still applies or would that be breaking some type of rule.
    Thanks
    Johnny

    • Hi Johnny,

      One of the basic reasons that the NLI is used is because once it is signed by an athlete, all other schools are banned from recruiting that athlete. So, to have conversations with the other schools, you will need to ask the school you signed with to release you from your NLI commitment.

      Rick

  • Linda

    My son will be a walk on at a Chicago D1 school for track. No money exchanged, but he signed his name to the “school” acceptance letter and sent the coach an email that he would be committing. Again, not a recruit, but a walk-on. His season is amazing thus far, just for indoors. coaches are all over his HS coach about him. Can he leave the D1 school and still run another D1 if he is offered a scholarship to run there, or does a walk-on lose his rights, too?

  • Derek

    Hi Rick,

    If a guy signs a letter on intent to play football, but may want to change his mind to play basketball, can he still be recruited? Can he sign/talk to other schools? He did not enroll in the college yet. Can he sign to play basketball elsewhere without penalty?

  • Coach J

    Rick, my athlete has signed a LOI with a JuCo, to run track. But recently she is messing up as a senior with only few months of school left. She is starting to cause conflict amongst my team with my underclassmen, and i am seriously concidering sitting her down. if she doesnt compete she will have no recorded times which may raise suspicions with her college coach. If I suspend her or possibly remove her from the team, could her college possibly coach decide to request a release.

    • Hi Coach,

      It is possible that the JUCO coach could withdraw his offer to her. On the other hand, he may view your act of sitting her down as doing him a favor.

      Rick

  • Alex

    My nephew plays both football and baseball. He has signed a NLI with a Div. 1 school to play both sports. Since baseball starts in the fall and he has had a great season thus far new opportunities have come up including pro baseball. My question to you is can he sign with another school to play baseball and take a year off from football because he is on a football scholarship with the school he has signed a NLI or what does he have to do to play both sports at another Div. 1 school?

    • Hi Alex,

      An athlete signs their NLI with the school, not with the sport. To be able to sign with another school, he would have to be released from his current NLI commitment to the school he has already signed with.

      Rick

  • bre

    HI I was wondering if anyoone could help me.
    Back in november i signed a letter of intent with a NAIA school but since then my feelings about the school has changed. I dont believe the school would be a fit for my or my familites budget. Is there a way that I could get out of the letter and still sign with another NAIA school before I begin college?
    I was severily missimformed at the time of my signing.

    • Hi Bre,

      It’s my understanding that the NAIA letter of intent does not prevent you from signing another letter of intent with a different NAIA school, but you may want to contact the NAIA national office to confirm that.

      Rick

  • Cassi

    Hi Rick,

    I recently signed a letter of intent to run track at an NAIA division 1 school. However, now I am having second thoughts. If I choose to run at an NCAA division 1-2A School, will I be penalized? My parents never signed anything and I have not registered on the NAIA clearing house yet. Thanks!

    • Hi Charlotte,

      It depends upon whether you are inquiring about NCAA schools or NAIA schools. For NAIA, I believe the two may be the same thing, or very similar, but I’m not 100% certain.

      For NCAA schools, they are definitely two separate items. The NCAA National Letter of Intent is a separate document that can’t be issued to a prospect unless it is accompanied by a financial aid agreement from the school.

      A prospect signing the NLI basically says that I am committing to attend the school I sign with for at least one full academic year, and all other NCAA schools are to stop recruiting me. The NLI is only issued the first time a freshmen or transfer will be attending an NCAA school, whereas a financial aid agreement will be issued to a student-athlete for each year they are receiving an athletic scholarship.

      Rick

  • Brian

    Hey Rick,

    My son recently was a preferred walk on to play football at Hampton university. He wasnt academically qualified coming out of high school, however he now has 60 credits making him qualified for the upcoming fall season. Since he never played a fall season due to not being qualified does he still have all 4 years of eligibility left?

    • Brian,

      Since your son is at a Div. I school, he is subject to the “five-year clock.” So he has five years from when he first enrolled as a full-time college student to use his eligibility. Since you mentioned that he has 60 credits, I’m assuming that he’s in at least his second year of college, so he has no more than three years remaining.

      Rick

  • Burbulla

    Dear Rick,
    I told my coaches that I want to leave my college after this Semester. Now they told me that I do have to pay for the rest of the Semester myself. The Problem is they let me sign something and I signed it. I am on a full scholarship right now and I don’t wanna pay for the rest of the Semester.
    Please help me
    Ida

    • Ida,

      I’m sorry, but if you signed something without reading what it said, you might be stuck. Are you still participating as a member of the team by attending all practices and workouts? If so, I would argue that they shouldn’t make you pay for the rest of the semester. Find out who the Faculty Athletic Representative is at your school and go talk with him or her to see if they can assist you.

      Rick

  • Ryan

    I signed an LOI with a JUCO in the NJCAA. I now have have juco’s in the California Community College Association that aren’t part of the NJCAA. Am I allowed to have contact and go on a visit to the California school since its not part of the NJCAA?

    • Hi Ryan,

      Since they are two separate organizations, the rules of one group probably don’t impact the other group. Keep in mind, however, that if the NJCAA school were to find out that you have had contact with, and visited, another school, they may void your LOI.

      Rick

  • jesse

    Please help, I’m very confused. I was recruited by an NAIA school to play soccer, I signed to play there on scholarship even though its far from home. I wanted to stay close to home, but didn’t anticipate any other schools making any offers. Now another NAIA school 30 minutes from home has made an offer, and I really want to go. Am I breaking any rules even by just listening to the other NAIA schools offer?? And is there any possible way I can attend the second NAIA school close to home?? The first schools tuition is 10 thousand dollars more and the scholarship isn’t a full ride, so the second school has more benefits then just being close to home.

    • Hi Jesse,

      It’s my understanding that the NAIA letter of intent does not prevent you from signing another letter of intent with a different NAIA school, but you may want to contact the NAIA national office to confirm that. At the least, you should let the second school know that you have already signed with an NAIA school and ask them what the consequences, if any, would be.

      Rick

  • Barbara W.

    My daughter signed a NLI for a division 1 school back in November. Now she is thinking of not pursuing the sport at all and going to the state university. Is she able to get out of the NLI if she is just planning to not play anywhere else?

  • Steve

    My son signed a NWAACC letter of intent for baseball and is now being offered a scholarship at a NCAA D II college. Does he need a release from his LOI at the JUCO before signing with the DII?

  • ken

    my daughter has been offered a pretty close to full ride to play basketball at an naia school 3+ hours away. She is also a track athlete that is receiving offers from closer ncaa D2 and D1 schools that are good offers, but still leave around $10,000-$14,000 per year. However, with track season just starting, they are willing to increase their offers depending upon how my daughter’s track season goes as the state tourney concludes around june 1st. my daughter has 2 days to accept the financial offer sheet from the naia school. If she accepts this offer, and then decides to run track (and possibly play basketball) for one of the d2 schools that increase their offer will she be able to do so?

    • Ken,

      Accepting the offer from the NAIA school does not prohibit her from being able to accept an offer from an NCAA school. This would not be the case, however, if you were talking about one NCAA school versus another. She can only sign one valid NLI from an NCAA school.

      Rick

  • John Hall

    I have signed a NLI and will be receving a scholarship for track and cross country and might want to compete at a different D1 college next year. Is there a way to de-commit and then run at the other school without missing a year or any penalties?

    Ps I am a senior in HS and it will be my first time going into college if that is relevant.

  • Len

    Hello Rick

    My daughter signed a National letter of Intent to play D1 basketball back in November 2012. Since then they had coaching change and the new coach has suggested that she is not a good fit for their program and she should go somewhere else. He also gave her verbal okay to contact any other schools that are willing to take her.
    Can the coach force my daughter off the team? Is the coach obligated to put her on the team? Can we contact other schools to see if any spots are available so she can transfer? Any help or guidance is greatly appreciated

    Thank You

    Len

    • Hi Len,

      If your daughter qualifies for admission to the school, is a Div. I Qualifier, and enrolls there this Fall, the athletic program would need to honor her scholarship, but there is no requirement that the coach keep her on the team – only that they provide the scholarship.

      Other schools are not permitted to talk with you or your daughter until she is provided a release from her NLI commitment. Go to http://www.national-letter.org, and look for the “Release and Appeals” tab on the right side of the page.

      Rick

  • Len

    Hello Rick
    Thank you very much for your quick response
    My daughter is a Div 1, Qualifier and has officially enrolled for the next upcoming fall term. Our concern is that the school will honor the letter of intent but the coach will not let her on the team. The coach already said to look for another school to attend and that he would help.
    Our question is: Can a second party talk to college’ coaches in our behalf to see if there are available positions out there? Because once we give up the NLI she has nothing.
    Any help or guidance is greatly appreciated
    Thank You
    Len

  • joe

    My son committed verbally to wrestle for Arizona State D1 , but he has not signed the N L I .He has offer from another college can he sign the N L I with other college ?

  • Jim

    Athlete is a junior in a Div. II baseball program. The word is that the head coach who recruited the athlete and has coached the first 3 years may resign or be let go at the end of this season. Where does the athlete stand if the head coach leaves and he wants to transfer to another Div. I or II school to play baseball? Thanks so much.

    • Hi Jim,

      A coach leaving does not directly effect the transfer process or the rules to be eligible at another school upon transfer. You may want to purchase our downloadable transcript “What You Should Know About Transfers” which can be found in the Store of this website.

      Rick

  • Mark Johnson

    Can a unsigned senior sign with a division 1 school after the final signing period for division 1 school ?

  • Alex

    If I signed a national letter of intent and decide I still don’t want to go. And still I highscool can I changed my mind and go to another school as a wall on and not lose Elgibilty as an athlete .

    • Hi Alex,

      That depends upon whether you are talking about an NCAA national letter of intent, or an NAIA or JUCO letter of intent. If you are referring to an NCAA NLI, you must be released from your commitment to attend the school you signed with, or you will lose eligibility at another NCAA school.

      Rick

  • Richard

    Rick, say a senior HS athlete signs a NLI to play D-1 football. Suddenly, he decides he doesn’t want to play there before he has ever even enrolled and wants to go somewhere else. The school agrees to release him from the NLI.

    Can he sign another NLI to another D-1 school that same year? I am under the impression that you cannot sign two NLI’s in the same year. What are the rules regarding that? Thanks.

  • Ondrea

    My daughter has signed an NLI to play soccer at a DI school. She is having second thoughts about playing there. Can she contact a DIII school about possibly playing,since they have no NLI?

  • Natasha

    Hi
    My son is a senior in high school and just commited to an NAIA school for basketball. He was given permission to play in one last club game and tore his acl. Will they still honor his partial scholarship and we have been advised to not tell his new coach until the final diagnosis, is that good advice?

    • Natasha,

      I can’t tell you whether they’ll honor his partial scholarship. I agree that you should wait until you have a doctor’s official diagnosis before you let his new coach know. In case he actually does not have a torn ACL, no reason to have the new coach be alarmed.

      Rick

  • Leslie

    my son signed a letter of commitment with a D2 college out of our state, is that the same thing as a letter of intent? he is now having coaches in our state that are D1 colleges talking to him. There was only a one page letter and nothing about athletic scholorships involved. He was under 18 when he signed this I didnt sign anything. Only recently filled out some financial forms.

    • Hi Leslie,

      If the item your son signed didn’t say National Letter of Intent, and wasn’t accompanied by an athletic scholarship agreeement from that school, then he’s basically just signed a walk-on agreement. So he can talk to any other school that is interested in recruiting him. The only downside might be that he might lose that Div. II opportunity. The Div. II school might drop their interest in him if they feel that he’s no longer interested in their program.

      Rick

  • Richard

    Rick-

    How can an athlete get an athletic scholarship without signing a NLI? The recent stories about kids who want to leave places to attend other schools but are being blocked by their current school makes me think a kid is better off not signing a NLI.

    So, is it possible to get an athletic scholarship without signing the NLI?

    • Hi Richard,

      It is possible to get an athletic scholarship without signing an NLI. And, keep in mind that as long as the athlete attends the school they sign with for one academic year, the NLI is no longer a factor in any manner. Also, be aware that schools can block, or make more difficult, an athlete’s transfer to another school regardless of whether they’ve signed an NLI.

      Rick

  • Nick

    I was a preferred walk on at a d1 school. I talk on the phone at once so i am considered recruited correct? I got hurt in camp and decided to leave the program. I got a release from the program as well. I then enrolled part time in a community college near home. If i decide to go to a junior college can i play at a juco for football for one year then sign with a d1 program?

    • Hi Nick,

      If you play JUCO football, you’ll need to graduate from the JUCO with your AA degree (and meet other academic requirements) in order to be eligible at another Div. I program.

      Rick

  • Ondrea

    I contacted you in a previous email (May 13, 2013) about my daughter signing an NLI with a DI school and wanting to contact a DIII school. It appears that the Coach of the DI school is not going to grant a release. I just want to be 100 percent certain that she is free to talk with the DIII school and can attend/play if she so chooses. Thank you for your help.

    • Ondrea,

      The NLI only impacts NCAA Div. I and II schools. This is because an NLI can only be issued in conjunction with an athletic scholarship, and Div. III schools don’t give athletic scholarships. Your daughter only needs a release from her NLI commitment if she is going to attend another Div. I or II school.

      Rick

  • Thomas B.

    Rick,

    My son has been offered a great athletic scholarship in his Junior Year of High School to play BBall at a NAIA D1 school. We are being told by friends to sign the offer to lock it up. He is being recruited, without an offer on the table yet, by a number of NCAA D2 schools and has been invited to a number of national combine/camps where he believes he will receive more notice and possible NCAA D1 offers. Other than the obvious that he is agreeing to attend the school knowing he might not, is there any downside to agreeing to go to the school and changing his mind if a better offer comes his way?

    • Thomas,

      The primary downside is that the NAIA school, upon learning that your son is still attending combines/camps and entertaining other offers, is that they might pull their offer.

      Rick

  • Tomeka

    My son signed a NLI to play football for a D2 school. But his track coach told him recently that a lot of schools want him for track. His school he signed with for football said they will release his NLI to the school he decide to run track at. But he wanna take a visit to those schools how do he get that permission.

    • Tomeka,

      Before coaches at other Div. II or Div. I schools can talk with him, he’ll need to get released from his NLI commitment to the school that he signed with. Once an athlete signs an NLI, that places a recruiting “ban” on him for all other Div. I and II schools. He may want to inquire with the school that he signed with about getting at least a partial release so that he can talk with these other schools.

      Rick

  • Cab

    My son is a junior who transferred from a JC and is currently on scholarship at a div 1 PAC 12 college . He is a baseball player who only played 1 2/3 innings in February at a fall tournament. Can he get this year of eligibility back and red shirt now?
    Also, if the college does not have him sign a NLI for 2013-2014 can he start emailing other colleges to let them know he has not been resigned?

    • Cab,

      It is only possible for your son to get this year back if he qualifies for a medical hardship waiver, which means that medical documentation must be submitted with the waiver to support the assertion that he was not able to play any more this season due to a serious injury or illness.

      He will need a “permission to contact” form, letter, or e-mail from his current school before other NCAA schools can talk with him about a possible transfer. This would be true even if he had been a walk-on athlete.

      Rick

  • Ryan

    I signed a letter of intent with an NJCAA school. My high school coach is now telling that I have coaches from a California JUCO in the CCCAA asking about me. Can I still sign with the California JUCO since they are in a different association?

  • Alvin

    Question: If a D1 softball player heading to her sophomore semester year signs her NLI. Later during the 1st semester when they practice and play non conference games she decides she no longer wishes to play. Freshman season did not go well but not awful and parents are suggesting she give it a try in hopes things improve. The head coach has little experience and they are looking for a new assistant coach. if she quit. does she have to be released from the NLI and does she have to pay back the funds (full tuition) she was provided?

    • Alvin,

      If a scholarship athlete voluntarily quits their team, the NCAA rules grant the school the right to immediately cancel the scholarship. Based on how many weeks into the semester when this occurs, the school may choose to prorate the scholarship for the number of weeks remaining in the semester, or they may allow the athlete to stay on scholarship through the end of that semester. Rarely will they require the athlete to repay for weeks that the athlete has been a fully-participating member of the team.

      Rick

  • Gene

    Hi Rick: Can you clarify that a Release from an NLI with a NCAA school carries no restrictions on an athlete to immediately attend, receive an athletic grant-in-aid, and practice/play at a new school? Versus not receiving a Release, losing the appeal process and still deciding to attend a different school where he would have to sit out of competition (but still practice) for one academic year AND lose a full year of eligibility? Thanks, GH

    • Gene,

      An athlete can be granted a complete release from the NLI, in which case they are free to choose another school, enroll, receive a scholarship, and participate (assuming they meet the academic eligibility requirements).

      There is also a partial release which allows an athlete to contact other schools, but still imposes restrictions on them if they indeed choose to enroll somewhere else.

      Rick

  • Felix

    My son signed a NLI with a D1 JUCO and has been approached by a D3 JUCO, since a D3 JUCO dosen’t require NLI can he attend the D3 program even tho he signed with a D1 or must he fulfill his NLI since there both NJCAA?

    • Felix,

      Your son will need to obtain an NJCAA Release Agreement from the school that he signed with if he is planning to attend a different JUCO. Or, he can fulfill his NLI commitment by attending the school he signed with for one full year. Otherwise, he will be ineligible if he attends the Div. III JUCO without doing one or the other of these options.

      Rick

  • Kaila

    Mr. Allen,
    I am currently on a D1 soccer scholarship and will be a sophomore in the fall. I was injured in the beginning of the season and was declared a red-shirt freshman. However, after a hard year of soccer I decided my true love was softball. I approached the softball coaches of my university and they said they were willing to let me try out.
    I have been playing softball with a local club team and am getting a few looks. I have a few questions regarding transferring.
    1.) If I get a D1 offer to play softball, would I have to sit out a year?
    2.) Would I still be considered a true red-shirt freshman if I were to transfer?

    • Hi Kaila,

      1. You would have the opportunity to be immediately eligible at a Div. I school without the requirement of sitting out for a year.
      2. You will still be considered a redshirt freshman, since you didn’t use a season of eligibility in the sport of softball this last year.

      Rick

  • Junior

    Hello my name is Junior and I was wondering if I could go NAIA even if I already signed a letter of intent to go Division 2?

  • Zachary

    I am currently enrolled and committed through the NLI to play for a D1 team in the fall 2013. However, I actually ripped my ACL and therefore will have to be operated. Consequently, I will certainly not be able to participate any games for my first year. Am I still eligible for my athletic scholarship for my first year?
    thanks

    • Hi Zachary,

      Yes, you are still eligible for your scholarship. The school should honor your scholarship, administer your rehab, and have you take this as a redshirt year.

      Rick

  • Toya

    I have a question. If my child signed a NLI for a DIV II football (not a full ride) but now has a bigger offer to run track at the DIV I level ( full ride).Is there a way he can got a release from the D2 school, without being penalize?

    • Toya,

      Your son will need to request a full and complete release from the NLI that he signed with the Div. II program in order to run track at the Div. I level without being penalized. Go to http://www.national-letter.org and look through the “Release and Appeals” tab on the right side of the page.

      Rick

  • Kendal

    If an athlete signed at a D1 college, but decides ask for a release, and receives a full release from the coach. Gets recruited by another D1 college. Does the athlete have to sit out a year?

    • Kendal,

      The athlete won’t have to sit out if he/she gets a full and complete release from the NLI and meets all the academic requirements for admission and eligibility at the new school.

      Rick

  • Em

    Can an athlete participate in two sports at the same NAIA school and receive two separate scholarships from both sports?

    • Hi Em,

      Yes, it would be possible to do that. Most schools won’t do that, however, because they want to use those scholarships to increase enrollment, so they would rather use two scholarships on two athletes rather than on just one.

      Rick

  • Bob

    My son signed both a NLI and Conference Letter of Intent. If granted a full release through the NLI process, does this also release the player from the Conference Letter of Intent or is the Conference Letter of Intent still valid(The Conference Letter of Intent has stitpulations such as loosing all scholarship grants)? If a player qualifies for university admissions, is a Division I Qualifier, and enrolls in the fall, why is the coach accusing my son of not fitting in with the team? How would my son not fitting in with the team effect his scholarship if my son has not started to practice at the university? What needs to occur for the coach to honor the scholarship but not allow my son on the roster? Does receiving the scholarship grant but not being on the roster stop my son from pursuing a transfer to another university to play the sport? At what point should a player contact the athlectic director concerning steps by the coach to cancel the scholarship or force the player to quit?

    • Bob,

      Without knowing the content of the Conference Letter of Intent, I can’t tell you whether it would still be valid. If your son qualifies for admission, is a Qualifier, and chooses to enroll at the school this Fall, the school is committed to provide the scholarship, unless your son agrees to a release from the NLI. (By the way, he must request the release, the coach can’t unilaterally give him a release from a signed NLI.)

      Your son will be able to pursue transfer to another school, but must have a release in order for other schools to talk with him. I would contact the AD now about your concerns. Why wait until your son arrives there and ends up being miserable?

      Rick

  • Camila

    Hi Rick,

    I’m just clear with ncaa. I’m tennis player. I’m applying to a Div II school. I signed an “official athletic offer”. Need I ask to my coach for an NLI. In january I was going to a div I school but I had a problem with NCAA and I couldn’t travel, that school made me sign an NLI, So thats why I ask you if I need to sign an NLI for div II.

    Thanks.

    • Camila,

      If you signed an NLI with a Division I school earlier this year, you will need to either obtain a full and complete release from that commitment, or you’ll need to confirm that the NLI was declared “null and void” if you are going enroll in a different school than the one you originally signed with without any restrictions or penalties.

      Rick

  • Josh

    Hi Rick,

    I have signed a NLI to play Div II baseball. After I attended orientation I’ve decided I didn’t want to attend that school anymore. I’ve drawn great interest from Div I schools but they can’t talk to me since I have already signed a NLI. Can I talk to or approach these coaches then? Can they even talk to me if I contact them? I really do not want to attend this school!

    Thank you

    • Josh,

      As you probably already know, the NLI that you signed with the Div. II school commits you to attend that school for at least one full academic year. If you want to attend somewhere else, you’ll need to request a full and complete release from your NLI commitment.

      If the school does not agree to a full and complete release, and you transfer to another Div. I or II school, you will have to sit out a year and will lose a year of eligibility as if you played. Also, coaches at Div. I and II schools are not to talk to you since you’ve already signed an NLI.

      Rick

  • Jonathan

    Hi Rick, I was wondering if they’re any loop holes in football scholarships for D1AA schools. I just got my AA from my Juco and committed to a D1AA school about a month and a half ago. I was told that i wouldn’t be able to get the partial scholarship until the first day fall practice starts because someone in my same position is being released and once the player leaves i will take over that money. The coach has been in contact with me like every 2 weeks to check up on me to see how things are going. I got my classes and practice schedule for the fall. Am i being lied to and should i expect the worst?

    • Jonathan,

      Based on what you’ve told me, I have no reason to believe you are being lied to. You should re-assess your attitude and your commitment, and be prepared to compete for a starting position when you report to campus for “pre-season camp.”

      Rick

  • Kaylee

    Hi Rick,

    I signed a NLI for a division II school for cross country and track. I’ve been doing the training over the summer and been having some second thoughts. It has been very intense and hard to handle. I had an injury during my whole track season and just can’t seem to get back into it. I feel so burnt out from it and am tired of being injured. I think I may have realized a little too late that I don’t want to participate in college sports. I also realized I may want to stay closer to home and go to a community college. Is it possible to do this?

    Thanks.

    • Kaylee,

      Yes, it is possible to do this. However, you should ask the Div. II school to grant you a full and complete release from your NLI commitment. Otherwise, if you do regain the energy and desire to run again, and you don’t go to that Div. II school, you will have penalties and restrictions imposed on you.

      Rick

  • Rod

    My son has given a verbal commitment to play baseball at a large D1 school. He had offers from several D1 schools so I know that college recruiters like his ability. However currently his ACT score on the sliding scale is not high enough to meet NCAA requirements. Will he be allowed to sign a NLI this fall (November 2013) if he has not meet the eligibility requirement? The College does not seem that interested in his academic status. Thanks for the info.

  • Rod

    Thanks for the info. He has also had interest from West Point. Is Army subject to the same NCAA requirements as other D1 schools?

  • Tamara

    Hello,
    I wanted to ask you a question. I’m a tennis player in D2 school. My coach was fired and my school reduced my scholarship, but they told me this only July 10 instead of July 1. So now I don’t have anytime to transfer. Is there anyway for me to solve this situation?

    • Tamara,

      The NCAA rules require the school to notify you by July 1 if your scholarship is going to be reduced or cancelled. I suggest that you appeal to the campus committee that is designated to hear appeals of athletic scholarship decisions.

      Rick

  • Very bad timing

    My son has a 50 percent scholarship to pitch at a D2 college. He has pulled a tendon in his elbow pitching legion baseball. Can he lose some of his scholarship before he gets to school? If it ends up as Tommy John will he be redshirted and what does that mean versus his scholarship? Thanks.

    Bad Luck

    • As long as he meets all the academic requirements for admission to the school and NCAA eligibility, it shouldn’t affect his scholarship this year. However, the coach may try to talk him into sitting out from school while he rehabs from surgery. Many Div. II schools are limited in their scholarships to begin with, let alone to have one invested in an athlete who’s not able to help them win games on the field.

      Rick

  • Dan

    When can a NLI be signed by the high school athlete? We have a family memeber who is going into the 11th grade and they are being “offered” scholarships. I thought it was only for athletes going into their senior years? Wasn;t sure if a freshman could sign a NLI

    • Dan,

      Only HS seniors or athletes attending a junior college can sign a National Letter of Intent. Depending upon the sport, the earliest opportunities are in either early November, or early February of the senior year.

      Rick

  • Bill

    Hi Rick,
    Long story but I will try to keep it short. My son went to a 4 year college with a baseball scholarship. He was red shirted his first year and in the second year had some issues on and off the field and decided to opt out of the baseball program. He then threw for some D1 JUCOs and was granted a full scholarship.

    However the issues, physical and mental have continued to plague him (he’s doctoring) and the juco is thousands of miles away. In his present state, we don’t think as parents he has a good chance of success that far from home.

    Before we present options to him, can he play at another 4 year D2 if his previous school releases him and is released from the NLI from the JUCO? Second option is if released from the NLI from the JUCO, could he play for another JUCO closer to home? Third could he just walk on at a D3 (JUCO or 4 year) without getting released from anything?

    We want to give him the option of playing as that is one of the things he enjoys and needs that in his life.

    Appreciate the help,
    Bill

    • Bill,

      Re: Option 1 – To play at another Div. II school, his previous school will need to release him, and will need to be able to state on a transfer questionnaire that he would have been eligible this year if he had stayed there rather than transferred.

      Re: Option 2 – Yes, but he will need to have a NJCAA Transfer Waiver and Release Agreement signed by the first JUCO.

      Re: Option 3 – For an NCAA Div. III school, it’s basically the same as Option 1. Don’t know about a D3 JUCO.

      Rick

      • Bill

        Hi Rick, Thanks for the response. So he can transfer from one D2 to another D2 and still play baseball the same year. I thought the exception excluded baseball, basketball and football, or is that only a D1 limitation?

        Second, in regards to option 1 above, so I understand, the first schools athletic department (or baseball coach) would have to release him and what does it mean to be “eligible”. Academically eligible?

        Let me know if I am going above and beyond the free service as I would be willing to set up a phone call to discuss.

        Thanks again,
        Bill

        • Bill,

          The exclusion is only for those sports in Div. I. He will have to meet academic eligibility rules as if he were staying at the first Div. II school.

          Additional questions, or more detailed explanations, would be best handled through a phone call.

          Rick

  • Roman

    Rick,

    I was currently at a Division 2 school this past spring and things did not work out, I’m wanting to transfer but the compliance seems to be making it difficult.

    Being that I never signed an actual NLI to the school , shouldn’t there be away for me to transfer with out having to go through the trouble of the release form?

    • Roman,

      Any student-athlete, walk-on or on scholarship, must receive permission to talk with other four-year schools about a transfer. If your school denies your request for “permission to contact” other schools, they must provide you with a hearing opportunity.

      Rick

  • Lynn

    My son signed a NLI to attend a NCAA university with on a football scholarship but has since decided he would prefer to attend a NAIA colleg. Will he be able to play football or will he have to sit out for 1 year?

  • Ricky

    Hi, I am currently at a university playing d1 aa football on scholarship, camp started about a week ago I did sign a NLI before playing but I quickly realized this not the place for me and want to transfer after this season or semester is over to a d1 a school, how would I go about approaching this situation?

  • DG

    My son signed an NLI at a D1aa and is on a full football scholarship. He’s currently at Fall camp, and has decided he doesnt want to go there, and plans on retuning home before the start of the fall semester. He may want to attend a school closer to home next year and walk on to their football program. What does he need to do? Request a release from the current D1aa school? If he receives a release, does this free up the scholarship for the school to use on someone else this year? Are there penalties he should be aware of?

    Thank you

    • DG,

      1. Request release from NLI commitment to attend that school for one full academic year.
      2. Request permission to talk with coaches at other schools (not the same as above release).

      If he transfers to another Div. I school, he’ll have to serve a “year in residency” there before he can be eligible for competition.

      Rick

  • Amy

    My daughter signed her letter for track at a juco. She is also playing volleyball for the school. Today one staff told her she needed to sign a letter for volleyball as well or she wouldn’t get her money. Then another staff told her to sign the second one to help track eligibility. We were told initially you only sign one. I want to make sure we don’t do anything that creates a problem for her. Thanks.

  • Preston

    I am in my first semester at a JuCo playing golf. If I email NCAA or NAIA coaches expressing that I want to transfer to their school for the following fall semester are they allowed to email me back?

  • Jim

    I went to a division 3 school for two years. I got suspended for a code of conduct violation for two years. I decided to transfer but if I went NCAA I would have to sit a year. I decided to attend an naia school and signed to a basketball scholarship. If I leave school before classes start will any penalties be handed to me? Could I sign to an NCAA school this year and just sit my one year then play for them for two more years? Need help!!!

    • Jim,

      If you leave school before classes start, there should not be any penalties for you. You could possibly sit for a year at an NCAA school and then become eligible depending upon your academic standing.

      Rick

  • Marquise

    Mr. Allen
    My nephew signed a scholarship with an NAIA school to play basketball. He wants to transfer to another school that is closer to home. As a freshman would he have to complete 1 full year before he asks for a release? If he transfers will he keep his scholarship? Also how do we go about asking for a release from the coaches?

    • Marquise,

      Your nephew should complete one full year before he asks his coach for “permission to contact” other schools. If he transfers, the decision regarding a scholarship will be determined by the coach at the next school.

      Rick

  • Melissa

    Mr Allen
    i play collegiate tennis and July 31 a girl on our team quit, violating her NLI. she was not released form the school and is appealing, but can she practice with her new school or is she not allowed to?

  • Ryan

    Rick,
    I play football at a juco right now and am looking to transfer to a D1. I was a qualifier out of high school so am I allowed to transfer to the D1 at semester?

    • Ryan,

      Yes, this will be possible. To be immediately eligible, you’ll need to have earned at least 12 transferable credit hours for each semester you are at the JUCO with a GPA of at least 2.500.

      Rick

  • Tammy

    My daughter signed a NLI to swim for a D2 School. She is also playing tennis at this school and received financial assistance to do so. She has found that it is too difficult to continue in both sports as the seasons do over lap for one month. She has to miss swim time to adhere to the limits the NCAA places on practices times. She would like to resign from the tennis team. Will this have any affect on her NLI? How do schools normally handle the repayment of financial assistance in the second sport?

    Thank you
    Tammy

    • Tammy,

      Resigning from the tennis team should not affect her NLI, as long as she will still be attending the school and participating on the swim team. Whether she has to repay any of the tennis scholarship money, or if they just cancel it going forward will be the decision of the school based on their policies and procedures. There is no one standard way that it is done.

      Rick

  • albert

    Rick, I am at a division 1aa right now and I’m not happy at this school. I was wondering can i transfer down a division after the Fall semester and not get penalized ?

  • Chris A.

    What happens when you sign a letter of intent to a NJCAA school, and your not able to attend? How long do you have to wait until you are able to run at another college?

  • Victoria

    I am currently attending a 4 year college as a 2nd year student. I have not participated in an intercollegiate sport at all yet. I was wondering if I transfer to a community college next year, which will technically be my 3rd year, will I be eligible to play a intercollegiate sport there?

    • Victoria,

      You are allowed up to five years (or ten semesters) of college enrollment in which you can compete for four seasons. No more than two of those seasons can be used at a two-year college.

      Rick

  • Cody

    Hi Rick,
    My name is Cody. I signed with an NAIA school for football (scholarship), but week 2, I got suspended from the team indefinitely. They informed me they will make a decision in the future. They called me, and I informed them I was no longer going to be attending their school altogether. I am now taking a year off and walking on to a D1 school. I didn’t start school yet. So I left and got my loans and scholarship taken away. I will be a 19 year old freshman. I have a few questions…
    Will I be penalized by the D1 school playing time wise or eligibility wise?
    Is it considered a transfer?
    Should I even mention to the d1 school that I played for the NAIA?
    Am I free to contact this D1 school?

    Thank you

    • Cody,

      You will be ineligible during your first year at a Div. I school. You will be considered a transfer. The Div. I school will send a transfer questionnaire to the NAIA school, so, yes, you might as well tell them you played – they will find out anyway. The Div. I school should tell you that they need “permission to contact” from the NAIA school before they can discuss a transfer with you.

      Rick

  • Cody

    Also my friend is at a D3 college. He plays football and is also going to transfer d1. If he quits the d3 team, and transfers d1, will he have to sit out a year still?

  • Sal

    I have a friend that is currently playing football and is on schoalrship. But he isn’t getting along with the coaching staff and doesn’t want to finish off the season, so he wants to quit. Could that affect his classes by any chance, be dropped by coaches or would he be harmed with financial issues?

    • Sal,

      Depending upon where he is playing, the school may have the right to immediately cancel his scholarship if he quits the team. They may make him pay a prorated portion for his schooling until the end of the semester, or they could even require him to repay what he’s already received or been credited for from the start of the school year.

      Rick

  • Ieisha

    I was kicked off of my athletic team due to my coach personal issues with me. I was not able to keep my scholarship for the second semester due to this. Are they allowed to take away my scholarship for the second semester being that I signed a letter of intent?

  • Ken

    Rick,

    If you are graduating from HS early, Dec 2013, and have a verbal commitment to D1 school for soccer, is there NLI that has to be sighned prior to attending the school in Jan 2014?
    Can a senior HS soccer player sign in November instead of Feb of 2014 if graduating early?

    Thank you,

    • Ken,

      The answer to both questions is no. A soccer prospect can’t sign an NLI before February 2014. In this scenario, they can sign the school’s financial aid agreement on the first day of classes for the Spring semester.

      Rick

  • Tim

    Can a player make an official visit to a D1 School after they sign an NLI to play for that school? Is this a common practice for a coach to ask a player to make an official visit after the NLI? Seems backwards.

  • Tim

    Rick,
    Not sure I understand the difference between a Quiet Period and a Dead Period for D1 Baseball. When I read the NCAA brochure, it gives the same description for each (No face to face contact, but may email or call).

    thanks.

    • Tim,

      During a quiet period, prospects can visit a campus and talk with coaches on campus, but coaches can’t do off-campus recruiting. During a dead period, no face-to-face contact is permitted, even if a prospect shows up at a coach’s office without any advance notice.

      Rick

  • Maritza

    I have 2 scholarships to a community college for basketball and track. Track is my primary sport so I decided that I want to quit basketball and dedicate myself to track. If I quit basketball on a partial scholarship before the season officially starts would I have to pay the money back? And what penalties could I face because of quitting?

  • Sunthi

    I’ve signed with a D2 school for football and am about to finish up my first semester here. I want to leave after this first semester and go play at a CC. What all do I have to take in account for when trying to leave and play at a Juco.

    • Sunthi,

      If you are on an athletic scholarship and signed a National Letter of Intent with your school, you’ll want to check out the NLI implications, as it requires you to attend your school for a full academic year. Otherwise, to be eligible when you transfer, you’ll want to complete at least 12 credit hours this semester at your school with at least a 2.00 GPA.

      Rick

  • Tara

    Hi Rick
    I have a player that wants to sign with a DII college but is still being recruited by a a DIII school, but their ED period starts after signing day. Can she sign NLI with a DII school and not be penalized?

  • John

    Hi Rick,

    I have been talking to a Division 1 school about potentially swim there for quite a while now, and eventually went on an official visit to the college. During the visit, I was told that due to limited funding, I would be unable to receive athletic-aid to attend the college. A couple of days after the trip, the coach gave me a call, and asked if I would like him to send me a National Letter of Intent. Now I am confused, because I thought that letters are only sent to those receiving some sort financial aid. Does offering me one suggest that he is interested in offering some sort of scholarship, or is he just trying to finalize his roster for the next year? Would there be any downsides to me signing an NLI if I don’t end up receiving money for attending the school?
    Thanks,
    unsure

    • Hi John,

      You are correct. A National Letter of Intent can only be issued with an offer of an athletic scholarship. If an athletic scholarship isn’t offered, then any NLI that you might sign would not be valid.

      His offer to send you an NLI seems to mean one of two things. Either he has come up with some money to offer you in an athletic scholarship, or he is actually speaking only about an Institutional Letter of Intent, which might mean you have a “guaranteed” roster spot, but it still won’t mean much because the coach could change his mind at any time.

      Rick

  • Mark

    Dear Mr. Allen,

    My son was recently cut from a JUCO at the end of their fall off season program. He signed a NLI back in January of 2013 for a full tuition scholarship.

    According to what I’ve read online the university still has to provide him the scholarship for the remainder of the year and the college must reduce their roster count by 1 if this is the case. It makes no sense to me. Is this correct or am I missing something?

    Thanks

    -Mark

    • Mark,

      My expertise is with NCAA rather than JUCO rules, so I”m unsure whether the JUCO must provide the scholarship through the end of the year and whether they must reduce their roster by one. I’m not aware of a roster limit at the JUCO level. You may be confusing the NCAA Div. I baseball roster limit with the JUCO scholarship rules.

      Rick

  • Brady

    Rick,

    I’m looking to play ball at a D1 FCS school. I’m getting everything financially accounted for as my father served in the military, thus I will be getting the GI Bill and such. Do I still sign a NLI to attend this University, or am I just view as a preferred walk-on?

  • Mario

    Rick,
    My son will be play D1 lacrosse but he will not be signing a NLI, instead the school is sending him a (AAL). In the coaches email he refers to it as the “Recruited Student Athlete Agreement Letter” (AAL).
    This is because my son although recruited, will NOT be receiving an Athletic Scholarship.
    I have googled this AAL and have come up empty.
    *Have you ever heard of this??
    Your help is appreciated.
    thanks,
    Mario

    • Mario,

      Individual schools can determine their own form (if they choose to use one) for recruited walk-ons. Such a form may have meaning or significance for the coach or the school, but it means nothing from an NCAA standpoint.

      Rick

      • Mario

        Thank you Rick
        So, I guess if for some reason my son wanted to transfer to another D1 Lacrosse program later on, there shouldn’t be any NCAA restrictions similar to the ramifications tied to the NLI,
        right ??

  • Mario

    Rick,
    We just received my son letter last night and you were spot on!
    The “Recruited Student Athlete Agreement Letter” (AAL) that we need to sign is an agreement between my son and the University and the coaching staff. It’s signed by the head coach and basically spells out what we have already been told. Although my son is playing D1 lax and NOT getting a Athletic Schlorship, he will be treated no differently and will be given the same opportunity to play as any other player on the team.
    It also spells out what is expected of him as a Student Athlete regarding grades, staying out of trouble, etc. etc.
    I’m glad I came across your website and will be sure to recommend it to others.
    thank you

  • Bo

    Need a list of Funded Scholarship baseball schools.

    I am going on unofficial visits and its hard to know which D1 and D2 schools are funded for scholarships in the Northeast. Now, I know schools in the IVY league and the Patriot league offer little or nothing in baseball scholarship money, but how would I know (until I take a visit) a D2 team would only have 1 scholarship for the whole team when D2 is 9 scholarships? Do you have a list of fully funded baseball schools?

  • Britt

    Hi,
    I play volleyball at a D1 currently, and am planning to ask for a release. The season ends soon, but I would like to start contacting other schools (one in particular) as soon as possible so I can transfer mid year. Is there any consequence for asking to be released before the season ends? Other than, of course, the coach not being happy with you. I don’t get a lot of playing time as it is so I am not worried about this being affected. I also would rather not talk to him directly. Can I just go to comiance to get a release and permission to contact?
    Thanks

    • Britt,

      If you’re not concerned about playing time, then there shouldn’t be much downside, other than the coach possibly being upset. You can go to compliance to ask for the release, but don’t be surprised if they tell you that you need to talk with the coach first.

      Rick

  • Kevin

    Rick,

    My son is currently a full-scholarship football freshman at an ACC school and wants to continue attending the school as a non-athlete for his second semester. He understands his scholarship will not carry over to the second semester if he stops playing right now. He wants to focus on his academics and get involved in certain campus activities and groups that are restricted if he was an an athlete. Will the school still keep him as a student even though he went there as a recruited athlete? This decision is made knowing that we may have to apply for financial aid, student loans and maybe have him get involved in a work study program.

    • Kevin,

      As long as your son is meeting the acdemic requirements to be considered in “good academic standing” as defined by the university, he should certainly be allowed to continue as a student.

      Happy Thanksgiving!

      Rick

  • Pobo

    Hi Mr. Allen. I’m a track and field athlete who has aroused interest in an IVY league school. I’ve applied early decision. If I get accepted on ED with other offers out there, do I have to go or could I opt out of the ED agreement because the agreement isn’t an NLI and I happen to have other offers on the table. Thanks Mr. Allen.

  • Josh

    Hi rick I have a quick question for you. I am currently playing basketball receiving a scholarship at a NAIA school. The semester is almost over there is a wk n a half left to go, next semester I won’t b returning I am transferring. I am just wondering if I were to quit right now with a wk n a half left will I get my scholarship taken away for this fall semester? Will I have to pay it back? Thank you for your help.

    • Josh,

      There is not a standard rule as to whether or not the NAIA school can take away the scholarship or make you pay it back. That decision is left up to the school.

      Rick

  • Dimitrije

    Hi.

    I am playing basketball on a scholarship at NCAA D2 school. I want to try to transfer after fall semester but i know i have to get released first before i start talking to other school. My coach is not to happy about my decision and i have feeling he will not release me. How do i officially request a release from an institution? Is it coaches personal decision or i can choose to be released at my will?

    • Dimitrije,

      You start by talking to your coach about your request for a release, and if he denies your request, then you should go talk to the athletic director. The decision is usually left up to your coach, although sometimes (but not often), the athletic director will over-rule the coach.

      Under NCAA rules, if the school denies your request, they must provide you with an opportunity to appeal the denial by the coach.

      Rick

      • Dimitrije

        Thank you Rick

        Also my coach said he cant release me until Christmas. He said he has to follow the books but i doubt in that. Can i be released at any given point or there is a time frame when i can be released? I would prefer to be released by the end of this week

        • Dimitrije,

          The NCAA rules allow you to be released at any time as long as you have the consent of the coach and the athletic department, but the school may have a policy that they don’t provide a release until after the semester ends.

          Rick

  • Isabel

    Hi, Rick.

    I recently signed an NLI to play a DI sport. They have checked my transcript and ACT, however, they want me to retake the ACT to see if I can score the requirement to get admitted. Could they take my scholarship away if I don’t get my ACT high enough when I take it the second time?

    Thanks a lot

    • Isabel,

      If your ACT score isn’t high enough to allow you to be admitted to that university, you won’t be allowed to enroll at the school, and therefore, won’t have your scholarship.

      Rick

  • My son is looking at signing to play football for a naia school. The school says the can offer him the max athletic scholarship limit (75%)… But he also wants to play baseball. Can they offer him another athletic scholarship for baseball too, or would that 75% be for all athletics or per sport?

    Monica

    • Monica,

      That answer will depend upon the limitations of the athletic department scholarship budget, and possibly on the rules of the athletic conference that the school is a member of.

      Rick

  • Tom

    Great answers to a confusing topic. My son signed a national letter of intent that included a partial scholarship last January to play baseball at a NJCAA institution in Iowa. He has completed the first semester with no problems, but has changed his mind and would like to pursue football at another NCJAA institution in Iowa. His current school does not offer football. What problems do you see with this? He has not been offered anything at the football school and would be walking on. Do you think he would be required to pay back the monies received from the completed first semester?

    • Tom,

      My primary expertise is with NCAA rules. I don’t know if he would be required to pay back the scholarship, but I believe he’ll need an NJCAA Transfer Waiver in order to be eligible at another school.

      Rick

  • Alexandra

    Hi,

    I have currently signed my letter of intent for softball at a D 1 university. I am having doubts and don’t think I want to play anymore. Am I able to withdraw from this commitment and attend another college and not play softball at all?

    • Alexandra,

      If you are certain that you’re not going to play softball for another school at the NCAA level, then you can withdraw from your commitment without any further action. However, if you think there is even the slightest chance that you may change your mind later on and want to play for another NCAA program, then you should ask for a complete release from your NLI commitment. If you don’t do so, there could be eligibility consequences for you at the next NCAA school.

      Rick

  • Chrissie

    My daughter has signed with a NJCAA for soccer, now one closer to home wants her. Does she need a release from the coach? Also, if she attends a juco first, does she need to graduate before transferring to a D1 or D2? Or. An she transfer after her freshman year at a juco?

    • Chrissie,

      My primary expertise is with NCAA rules, rather than the NJCAA rules, however, I believe she will need a release from the JUCO that she signed with before she can sign with another JUCO.

      Her ability to transfer to an NCAA Div. I or II school after her freshman year will depend upon whether she is a Qualifier for Div. I and/or II as determined by the NCAA Eligibility Center. For more info on the transfer rules, you can purchase our “Informed Athlete’s Guide to Transfers” which can be found in the Store of our website, or at this link:

      http://www.informedathlete.com/informed-athletes-transfer-guide

      Rick

  • Richard

    Rick, I have a question. Can a recruit for football accept bowl gifts that teams get for playing in a bowl game? Say a recruit for school A goes to the bowl game that school is playing in. That schools players get a ‘gift bag’ for playing in the bowl. Can the recruit get that same gift bag if the school gives it to him? Or is that a violation?

    • Richard,

      The answer to that is a big NO!! The only way I can see that being possible is if the recruit is related to an athlete on the team such as a brother or a cousin, and receives the gift bag directly from their relative. Receiving it from a representative of the school is a definite NO.

      Rick

  • brittny

    Hi i have a question. i played juco for a full semester until december. Does the scholarship roll over until the end of next semester or is it gone?

    • Brittny,

      If you are still attending the school and still fully participating as a member of your team for the next semester, your scholarship should continue through the rest of the academic year if it was written for the full academic year.

      Rick

  • trayvia

    Hey Mr.Allen,
    If my niece signed a letter of intent at a NAIA school in Missouri but next semester wants to transfer to a NAIA in texas is that possible?

    • Bryce,

      It would be possible to do so with a JUCO, but not with a four-year college. However, the four-year program might ask you to sign an institutional letter of intent. Such a letter would not prevent you from considering other schools.

      Rick

  • DCK

    Our son verbally committed to a D2 Football program. No money given for freshmen year at this time and they said he would be red-shirted. Is there any reason to sign a NLI?

  • Emily

    Hi my son has committed to play baseball at a JUCO and signed a NLI, I am wondering if he is still allowed to talk to other coaches in different divisions and can sign with another school at the same time or if that is not allowed. Thanks!

  • Ryan

    Hello,

    My son, a football player, has partial scholarship offers from DII colleges, walk-on offers from FCS universities, and has made recruiting boards for FBS programs. How does the process work for recruits that are not number one? Please explain possible scenarios if the top recruit does not sign what happens to the #2-5 recruits both on and after national signing day.
    Thank you

    • Ryan,

      That’s a difficult question to answer because there are so many factors involved. The process for “recruited walk-ons” can vary from one FBS school to another, and will also depend upon the depth that each school has at your son’s position.

      Also, be aware that because FBS coaches are on the road so much for recruiting during December and January, that many top programs give their staffs a week or two of vacation as soon as signing day is over as a break before spring football practice planning begins. So, it’s possible that there may not be any contact with your son until the coaches return from their vacation.

      Keep in mind that if your son’s ultimate goal is an FBS program, that if he transfers up from a Div. II or FCS program and receives a scholarship from one of those schools, or is classified as “recruited” to one of those schools, that he’ll be ineligible for competition during his first year after transfer to an FBS program.

      You may want to contact me directly to schedule a phone consultation to discuss his options. He may want to consider going to JUCO for a year to get “re-recruited” by FBS schools and not have to sit out for a year.

      Rick

  • sHo

    My son has signed to play at a JUCO. If an NCAA D1 school wants him (he recently filled out and hits the ball 410ft.) and he signs with the D1 school can he go to the D1 school his freshman year?

    Also, should we be emailing coaches for D1 schools that continually compete for a National Championship and try to get them to commit to him for Sophomore year assuming he continues his upward (tools) trend during freshman year at a JUCO?
    Thanks!

    • sHo,

      Your son can go to the Div. I program his freshman year as long as he meets the academic standards to be a Div. I Qualifier.

      Regarding your second question, there is nothing wrong with this approach if his JUCO coach believes he can compete at that level.

      Rick

  • David

    My son is trying to decide on 2 different sports in college to sign with wrestling or baseball. Can he sign a NLI with a D1 or D2 school for wrestling and then change is mind and sign with a D1 or D2 at a different college in baseball without having to be released from wrestling. Thanks

  • Bill

    Rick,

    If I have signed a NLI in the Fall 2013 and I am not admitted to the school does my NLI automatically become null and void or is there action that I must take to make it null and void.

  • Ryan

    Hello,
    It is now the evening of national signing of the year if 2014. Is it only acceptable to sign on this day is it still eligible if I sign post this date?
    -Thanks

    Ryan

    • Ryan,

      This is only the first day of the National Letter of Intent signing period. Depending upon the sport, an NLI can be signed up until April 1 (for football) or August 1 (for many other sports).

      Rick

  • Ali

    Hi,

    I was offered a walk on position at a d2 school, as a recruit for volleyball. When can I sign my recruited /preferred walk on papers? And what is the signing period for volleyball? Thanks so much this page is so helpful!

    • Ali,

      If you’re not receiving an athletic scholarship, those papers can be signed at any time. The next signing period for volleyball scholarship offers starts on April 16.

      Rick

  • Kassidy

    What do I do if I have signed with an NAIA school but a NCAA D2 coach has contacted me to play at their school instead but without a scholarship?

    • Kassidy,

      You need to decide what school and program is the better fit for you. I know the Div. II school may seem more prestigious with the NCAA name, but it is often better to go where the coach has a scholarship “invested” in you. Although you have already signed with the NAIA school, you may be interested in our “Informed Athlete’s Guide to Campus Visits” which provides tips on things to look for and questions to ask when visiting campus. The Guide can be purchased from the Store of our website. Here’s a link to the Guide to Campus Visits:

      http://www.informedathlete.com/informed-athletes-guide-to-campus-visits?cid=187

      Rick

  • erie

    if I get a preferred walk on spot, but decide to go to a prep school. Will that spot be open for me again with a scholarship offer

  • Joyce

    My son is currently a high school senior looking forward to play baseball his freshman year of college. We have not yet decided on a school and since he has not yet signed his NLI will he still be able to play his freshman year?

    • Joyce,

      There are plenty of places that he can still attend and play his freshman year, as long as he meets the academic eligibility requirements for whatever level he wants to pursue, whether that’s NCAA Div. I, Div. II, NAIA, or JUCO.

      Rick

  • Sarah

    Hi Rick,
    I signed my NLI to a D2 school this month, but my father has become sick and I need to be with him as much as possible. Since I haven’t practiced or played games with the college team yet, will it be easier for me to be released? I still want to play D2 soccer.

  • Alex

    I transferred once from a four-year college and I didn’t sign an NLI for the current college that I am attending currently but I received a full athletic scholarship from them. I redshirted my Junior year and I have 1 more year of eligibility left. I am graduating this spring and I want to attend grad school somewhere else, do I still need to request for a release if I want to compete at another college for grad school?

  • Troy

    Hi Rick. I have transferred schools and will not be playing my sophomore season based on the fact that I won’t be receiving a lot of playing time right off the bat. I will sit out this year and play next year as a “redshirt sophomore” basically. My freshman year I played at a different school where I didn’t see the field. Not one inning, not one at bat although I traveled with the team the whole year. Would I be able to get that freshman year back?

    Thanks.

    • Troy,

      You can’t get your freshman year back unless you were injured or ill to the point where you weren’t healthy enough to play last year, and in that case, the school would need to submit a medical hardship waiver on your behalf to the NCAA or the conference office. Unless that is the case, you won’t be able to get last year back, and should work hard to break into the lineup this season.

      Rick

  • don

    hi rick , my daughter has a offer to a d1 hockey program. the program starts 2015. she is a senior this year. the coach wants to red shirt her pay for her first year. my daughter will receive grant money for the remainder of the following years, and is responsible for her own tuition. my question is the first year that the school is paying is that consider a scholarship? If so is there a minimum scholarship they would have to offer my daughter for the next 4 years?

    • Don,

      First off, the term “red shirt her pay for her first year” is a phrase that I’ve never heard before in all my years in the business, so not sure what you or the coach mean by that. Maybe that’s a term that hockey coaches use. Because I’m not sure what that phrase means, I’m unsure of the answer to your question. If you want to discuss this directly, my contact info is on the “About Us” page of our website.

      There is no minimum scholarship in the sport of hockey. The coach can award whatever amount he or she chooses.

      Rick

  • Sam

    If my nephew has signed a NLI with an NCAA Div. II school, and wants to go through a post-graduate year of high school this fall, instead, will he still be bound by the NLI when he finishes?

    • Sam,

      Your nephew will still be bound to the Div. II school unless they release him from his NLI commitment, or if they state in writing that they no longer have his scholarship available for him.

      Rick

  • erie

    So a D2 coach liked my film but said any scholarship money but we do have academic money we can give you. Does that mean I will have to be a preferred walk-on or a scholarship player

  • Mike

    My son signed a NLI to play baseball at a Div. II school for the 2013-14 season as a freshman. Unfortunatley it did not work out and he transferred to a Tech school after the first semester. Other than getting a release from his NLI, when would be the earliest he would be able to play for a Div. I school?

    • Mike,

      To be immediately eligible as a 4-2-4 transfer to a Div. I program, your son will be required to graduate from the two-year school with his Associates Degree, and meet other academic requirements. Be aware that those other academic requirements include having the required number of “transferable” courses, which sometimes is a problem for athletes coming from a tech school to a Div. I program.

      Rick

  • Dawn

    Dear Mr Rick Allen,

    My daughter is a senior in high school this year. She signed a letter of intent in January to play for an NAIA school next year.

    When we signed we were told that a scholarship offer would follow. (new coach) He was hoping to free up some money from other players.

    We received our FAFSA this week and as I am sure like most people were disappointed in her amount. So we called the coach and asked for a possible figure range so we could make sure it was going to work for her. She is paying her own college.

    Frankly, we were insulted by the offer. She has since decided she is not interested in attending that school, to pay over $18000 just to play ball. She isn’t even interested in playing ball anymore.

    So my question is, what do we need to do to get out of the letter of intent. With no desire to play at another school does it matter if they agree to release her? and we did Not sign during the signing period. We signed in January, does that help us at all?

    Thank you so much for your time

    • Dawn,

      If your daughter plans to enroll at another NAIA school, it would be a good idea to request her release from the letter of intent in case she changes her mind later on about playing. Contact the Athletic Director at the school she signed with regarding the release.

      If she doesn’t have any plans to attend an NAIA school, but instead will start at an NCAA school as a freshman, there’s no need to request the release, since the NAIA and NCAA are totally separate organizations.

      Rick

  • Brandon

    Hello i have a question. My situation is a little difficult so hold on, out of high school i attended a prep school fork union witch does not count toward my eligibility. out of prep school a start up program recruited me to play informing me since it was a 1st year program it would be counted as a club year witch also would not be accounted toward my eligibility. the first official season was the season that just passed so technically ill be a sophomore next season coming up this fall. i do not want to attend this program next year so I’ve been talking to other schools and the coaches said i need a release form first. so i go to national letter of intent .com and it says that i have no letter of intent on file even though i played the real season this fall. so my question is if i did not sign letter of intent do i still need a release form and Im asking does this past year still count toward my eligibility

    • Brandon,

      Since you were recruited to represent a team sponsored by the college, coaches at other NCAA schools will need a “permission to contact” form or e-mail before they can talk with you about a possible transfer.

      Rick

  • Windie

    Can my daughter play basketball and particate in track at a D1 school and receive either a partial or full scholarship from one of the sports?

    • Windie,

      Because of the scholarship rules for NCAA Div. I basketball, if your daughter receives even a partial scholarship for track, and also plays basketball, she will have to count as one of the 15 countable scholarship athletes for the basketball team. Some coaches won’t be willing to provide one of their 15 scholarship “slots” to a “part-time” athlete who is splitting time between two sports. Some coaches will be OK with it, but her pool of potential schools will probably be reduced if she wants to do both.

      Rick

  • Maria

    Hi-

    I am a student athlete looking to sign in November. The school I want to sign with is a Division 1 No Scholarship school, so I will still be paying my own tuition. Will the NLI still be a binding contract for me to compete for this school for a year? Or, in other words, will I still be able to sign a NLI even if the school does not offer me financial aid?

    • Maria,

      An NLI is only valid if it is issued along with an athletic scholarship offer. If the school you will sign with does not offer athletic scholarships, then an NLI will only be “ceremonial” and should not be binding on you.

      Rick

  • Kameron

    i am a juco athlete right now and i just decided to tranfer for the fall. is it too late for a D1 to offer me a scholarship for the fall semsester? the application deadline for the fall is coming up do i have to apply before the deadline?

    • Kameron,

      It’s not too late for a Div. I school to offer you an athletic scholarship, although in many cases, they’ve probably already offered all of the scholarships that they have available for next year. If you are planning to attend a particular Div. I school this Fall regardless of whether you are offered an athletic scholarship, then you should definitely apply before the deadline.

      Rick

      • Mary

        My son just signed a juco basketball scholarship but he has been offered by another juco school is it possible for him to Decline the first scholarship even though it is signed?

        • Mary,

          If your son has already signed an NJCAA Letter of Intent/Scholarship Agreement with one JUCO, he’ll need to receive an NJCAA Release Agreement from that school before he can sign with a different JUCO.

          Rick

  • Nicole

    I am a freshman at a juco going into my sophomore year this fall .I sign a LOI some days ago for 2014-2015 basketball season , after I sign I realize that I didn’t not wanted to be here anymore because finical problems with my family had arise and I think I will have to attend a juco closer to my aunt so I can get help finically will it be possible for me to leave .

    • Nicole,

      You’ll have to speak to your coach, and probably the Athletic Director, at your school to request an NJCAA Transfer Release in order to transfer to another school. There may also be another form, or an addendum to the Transfer Release, to release you from your LOI for next year. The Transfer Release needs to be signed by the AD and the President at your school.

      Rick

  • Caleb

    Hello, I have currently signed a NLI to a Division II school to play football. I’ve had second thoughts and I don’t feel the desire or the love for the game I used to have. I want to go to a different school and not play any sports. How would I go about doing so? Thanks so much! -Caleb

    • Caleb,

      If you are 100% sure that you’re not going to play any sports in college, you don’t need to do anything other than let them know that you won’t be enrolling there this Fall. If you think you may change your mind, then you should request a release from your NLI commitment to attend that school for one full academic year. If they don’t release you, and you try to play at another Div. II school (or a Div. I), you’ll be ineligible the first year you want to play, and you’ll lose a year of eligibility while you’re sitting out.

      Rick

  • Emanuel

    Hello Rick,

    I have not made a decision to where i will be enrolling at school in the fall so i was wondering,

    A)What is the latest i can sign to attend a Division 1 school for this upcoming 2014-15 season and also..

    B) Is it possible to sign to a junior college right now to be safe and then decommit at about mid july and then sign to attend a division 1 school for the upcoming 2014-15 season?
    Thanks.

    • Emanuel,

      You can sign a scholarship agreement with a Div. I school right up until the start of classes this Fall. It is also possible to “double sign” with both a JUCO and then an NCAA school since they are two totally separate organizations.

      Rick

      • Emanuel

        Thanks for clearing that up, however, would there be any repercussions if i were to sign to a juco tomorrow for example, then pick up an offer during the july live period for this summer and decide to no longer attend the juco that i had initially signed to, only to sign to the division 1 school instead?

        • Emanuel,

          The only repercussion might be if you want to go to the JUCO later on (perhaps after your freshman year at the Div. I school), after you have walked away from their offer the first time.

          Rick

          • Emanuel

            Thanks for the quick reply, any idea on how I would go about cancelling the commitment to the juco? And would it scare D1 schools from potentially recruiting me?

          • Emanuel,

            Simply contact the coach at the JUCO to cancel your commitment. It may scare off some Div. I schools, but probably not all.

            Rick

  • Holly

    My son signed a NLI to play baseball at a D1 university. The deal was that there was no athletic $ his first year, only academic. Year 2 there will be athletic $. We were told to go ahead and have a NLI signing ceremony, then later he would be asked to decline the athletic scholarship because the academic scholarship was more. If he decides to go to another D1 university instead, is he bound by the NLI to the first school? Does the fact that there was NO athletic money up front mean that the NLI is invalid and not null/void? Am I understanding that there is a difference between null/void and invalid?

    • bball15,

      Division I JUCOs are allowed to provide full athletic scholarships if they choose to do so. However, some Division I JUCOs only provide educational expenses, either because they are a member of a conference which has that restriction, or because they have a limited scholarship budget.

      Division II JUCOs can only offer scholarships for educational expenses, they aren’t allowed to offer room and board.

      Rick

Leave a Reply