The July 1st deadline for NCAA Division I and II schools to notify scholarship student-athletes of the status of their athletic scholarship for the 2020-21 academic year has passed.

However, there are still some scholarship issues that can impact athletes – In this particular case, incoming baseball recruits.

On a recent baseball forum that I follow, there was a report of a coach who has reportedly asked multiple recruits to “release themselves” from their National Letter of Intent that they had signed with that program. Reasons that the coach cited for this request included:

  • The number of seniors who are returning for another season of eligibility
  • The number of juniors who would have likely been drafted this year but for the MLB draft being shortened to just 5 rounds.

As you can imagine, this puts these baseball athletes in a very difficult position.

(A similar situation could possibly happen in any sport, but it happens most often in baseball.)

An athlete in that situation could tell the coach that he intends to enroll at the university, work his tail off and receive the scholarship that he signed for.

As long as an athlete satisfies all of the university’s admission requirements and the NCAA requirements to be a Qualifier, the university would be required to honor that scholarship.

However, doing that places the athlete in a very awkward position.

He would already be starting off at a disadvantage by joining the team of a head coach and staff who expressly told him that they didn’t want him there on scholarship.

On the other hand, does this athlete have a realistic chance of finding another team to join and another university that will permit him to enroll at this late date?

If you have or know an athlete who is in a similar situation, let them know about our confidential Scholarship Strategies Consult, or have them contact us by calling 913-766-1235 or by sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com

Unfortunately, we are starting to see more reports of colleges and universities that are cancelling Fall sports. Recent examples include Morehouse College in Atlanta, Bowdoin College in Maine, and UMass Boston. Morehouse is an NCAA Division II university, while the other two are members of Division III.

  • If your student-athlete’s season is cancelled by his or her college or university, will they attend that college this Fall?
  • Will they stay home instead where they may be “safer” from contracting Covid?
  • What will happen to their scholarship?

Do You Need Advice?

Due to the uncertainty of this time and the frequent changes being announced by colleges across the country, we may not have all the answers for you. However, we can talk with you confidentially to review key eligibility or scholarship rules to keep in mind as well as possible options that your student-athlete can consider.

Schedule a confidential Eligibility Issues consultation online, send an email to rick@informedathlete.com or give us a call at 913-766-1235.

Recently, the NCAA Division I Council developed new waiver guidelines for student-athletes who are transferring for “mental health reasons.”

NCAA staff members will use those guidelines and directives when they decide if a student-athlete who transfers to a Division I team from another four-year college will be ruled eligible for competition in their first year at the new school.

The key point to be aware of regarding these new guidelines for mental health transfer waivers is this:

  • Documented evidence will be required to demonstrate that at the previous school, a student-athlete’s ability to function on a daily basis was impaired by a mental health condition.

These new guidelines could possibly benefit scholarship student-athletes in the sports of baseball, basketball, football, or men’s ice hockey who transfer to a Division I team for mental health reasons and would otherwise be required to serve a “year in residence” before being eligible to compete for that university.

If your athlete is considering a transfer for mental health reasons and you would like to arrange a confidential consultation to discuss these new waiver guidelines in detail, schedule your confidential Waivers and Appeals phone consultation online, or contact us by calling 913-766-1235 or by sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com