NCAA Scholarship Athletes: Have you been notified if your scholarship will be reduced or cancelled?

An NCAA Division I or II athlete who was on scholarship during the 2015-16 academic year must be notified no later than July 1 if their scholarship will be reduced or cancelled for the 2016-17 academic year. 

The official notification must come from the university’s financial aid office, and must include information about the opportunity to appeal the reduction or cancellation.

While the rules do give coaches and athletic departments up until July 1 to make their final decisions, most coaches will inform athletes during end-of-the year or end-of-the-season one-on-one meetings.

If you or your athlete have been verbally informed by the coach that your scholarship is being reduced or cancelled for next year, I suggest that you request information about the hearing opportunity as soon as possible.

Otherwise, if you wait to receive the official notification from the financial aid office, you could be waiting until near the end of July before a campus committee hears your appeal. 

Here’s an example of how much delay could occur:

  •  Athlete is verbally informed by the coach at the end of their season in April that their scholarship won’t be renewed for next year. 
  • But, the athlete is waiting for the written notification, and assumes that it may come after final exams, so doesn’t act on the word from the coach.  The official notice actually isn’t sent to the athlete until late June.
  • When the athlete receives the notice, he/she considers it for a couple of days, and now it’s early July when the athlete wants to request the appeal, but the campus is closed for the July 4th holiday. 
  • The school has up to 30 days from receiving the athlete’s request for appeal in which to conduct the hearing, so it’s now late July or early August before the hearing takes place and a ruling is determined. 

Obviously, not much time to plan for the 2016-17 school year!!

Contact us at 913-766-1235 or send an e-mail to if you have questions about scholarship reductions or non-renewals.

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

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