With fall sport practices starting recently at many colleges, and classes starting soon, here’s a sample of some of the questions we’ve received recently:

  • I’ve started practice with my college team, but I’m not sure this is the right fit for me and I’m thinking about leaving. When does my eligibility “clock” start?
  • Will I be considered a transfer athlete if I leave this team after starting practices at this college?
  • My new coach just informed me that I likely won’t receive any playing time this season. Do I have any options to transfer at this late date? Also, is there any way I can “protect” my scholarship for this year, or at least part of the year?
  • I just learned that I may not be able to be eligible at my new college this year because I don’t have enough transferable credit hours. Do I have any options for a waiver at this point?

If you or your athlete have questions like these, we can discuss your specific situation, answer your questions, and explain what options might be possible.

Schedule a confidential Eligibility Consult, a Transfer Consult, or a Scholarship Strategies Consult online at one of these links. Don’t worry about whether you’re choosing the correct category of consultation. Regardless of which category you choose, we’ll be sure to confidentially answer your questions and explain what options your athlete can consider.

You can also contact us directly by calling our office at 913-766-1235 or by sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com.

The academic requirements for a student-athlete to be eligible when transferring to a new university depend upon several factors, including the number of semesters when an athlete has been enrolled in college and taking classes as a full-time student. This is especially true for any athlete transferring to the NCAA Division I level.

When a junior college athlete who will be transferring to an NCAA Division I university has attended the junior college for more than two years, the academic requirements to be eligible can become even more complicated.

Here’s one reason why:

If you think of that situation this way, how will an athlete attending a two-year college that only offers freshman and sophomore level courses earn junior level course credits that will be acceptable for transfer to a Division I university if they’ve been attending a junior college for three years?

We can provide a confidential Eligibility Consultation to inform you and your athlete of the specific academic requirements that he or she will need to satisfy to be eligible when they transfer to a new university. Contact us at rick@informedathlete.com or call our office at 913-766-1235 for more information regarding our services.

June 15th is an important date for some college athletes as well as for many high school recruits.

Let’s first review the situations for which June 15 can be important for current college athletes.

It can be important for those who hope to transfer from any four-year college to an NCAA Division II athletic program, as well as for current junior college athletes who were signed to an NJCAA Letter of Intent during the 2021-22 school year.

4-4 Transfers hoping to transfer to an NCAA D2 program:

For athletes currently at an NCAA school and who want to be eligible this Fall upon transfer to an NCAA D2 program, June 15 is the deadline by which the athlete must provide written notification to their current school that they want to be entered into the NCAA Transfer Portal. If such an athlete doesn’t provide written notification to their current school by June 15, they will lose out on the opportunity to be eligible for competition in their first year at an NCAA Division II program.

For 4-year college athletes who don’t have access to the NCAA Transfer Portal (such as current NAIA athletes), those athletes should make sure they request written permission from their current school to be allowed to contact NCAA Division II programs about a possible transfer no later than June 15. Such a request should be sent to their current athletic department via email so that the date of the request can be verified if it becomes an issue.

NJCAA Letter of Intent signees:

For athletes who attended an NJCAA two-year college during the 2021-22 academic year as a Letter of Intent signee; June 15 is the date by which notification of renewal of the athlete’s Letter of Intent for the 2022-23 academic year is supposed to be provided by their college.

An NJCAA athlete who isn’t signed to a second-year scholarship by June 15 (which is supposed to be in the form of a new Letter of Intent) becomes recruitable by any other NJCAA college starting on June 16.

June 15th can also be an important date for High School recruits

High School recruits in many sports can begin to receive direct recruiting communication from NCAA Division I and Division II coaches as outlined below.

NCAA Division I recruiting information:

June 15 is the first date when most NCAA Division I coaches will be able to place recruiting phone calls and send emails/messages to athletes who have just completed their sophomore year of high school.

The following Division I sports are the only ones that have a date other than June 15 as the earliest date for placing recruiting calls and sending emails/messages to prospects:

  • Baseball – Sept. 1 of junior year
  • Women’s Basketball – June 1 at conclusion of sophomore year
  • Football – Sept. 1 of senior year except for one call from 4/15 to 5/31 of junior year
  • Men’s Ice Hockey – Jan. 1 of sophomore year
  • Lacrosse – Sept. 1 of junior year
  • Softball – Sept. 1 of junior year

Football does have an exception to the above date regarding emails sent to prospects. Those can be sent to prospects beginning September 1 of a prospect’s junior year in high school.

NCAA Division II recruiting information:

For recruiting by NCAA Division II colleges, June 15 is the date when coaches in ALL sports can start to contact recruits who have completed their sophomore year of HS via phone, email, or direct messaging.

Division II coaches in all sports can also accept incoming calls and talk to prospects who call them at any time.

For specific questions about the NCAA transfer or recruiting rules, or scholarship agreements and letters of intent, schedule a confidential Scholarship Strategies consult online send an email to rick@informedathlete.com or call 913- 766-1235.

The annual NCAA Convention was held recently in Indianapolis. While much of the publicity over the last few months regarding the Convention was regarding the work of the Constitution Committee to propose a new draft of the NCAA Constitution, I doubt that work will really impact the day-to-day life of NCAA student-athletes – at least not in the near future.

Here’s a brief rundown of some topics of interest for NCAA DI, NCAA DII, and NCAA DIII.

NCAA DI

For women’s basketball, recruiting rules were revised in several different topic areas, including telephone calls, official visits and the recruiting calendar. Due to the number of changes, contact us directly if you desire information regarding those changes.

In men’s basketball, the number of recruiting-person days (number of total days the men’s coaching staff could be off-campus recruiting) was reduced from 130 to 100. Two coaches recruiting on the same day equals two recruiting-person days.

For both men’s and women’s basketball, a proposal to allow student-athletes to appear in up to four regular season games without being charged with the use of a season of competition was defeated.

Football spring practice opportunities for full contact practice sessions will be reduced. They won’t be allowed on consecutive days during spring practice and won’t be allowed for more than 75 minutes in any practice session (other than a scrimmage).

New guidelines for transfer waivers that were set to go into effect in 2022 will be delayed until January 2023. This means that athletes transferring to a Division I university who need a waiver to be ruled eligible will have a wider range of acceptable reasons and circumstances that can be cited as a factor in the waiver decision as compared to the new waiver guidelines.

Those guidelines – which are now postponed a year – basically limit acceptable waiver reasons as:

  • An athlete has a diagnosed learning disability which was not sufficiently supported at the previous university OR
  • An athlete has faced a “real and imminent health and safety” threat at the previous university.

NCAA DII

The Division II One-Time Transfer Exception was changed to more closely align with the Division I One-Time Transfer Exception. The key aspects of the new Division II rule are:

  • The school from which an athlete is transferring will not have the opportunity to object to the athlete’s transfer.
  • Athletes will be required to view an educational video or online module regarding the transfer rules before their name will be entered into the Transfer Portal.
  • Athletes will be required to provide written transfer notification to their school by June 15 to have the chance to be eligible during the upcoming academic year.
  • A transferring athlete and the head coach at the new school to which they are transferring will be required to certify that they had no direct or indirect contact regarding a transfer prior to the student-athlete entering the Transfer Portal.

NCAA DIII

The proposal which would have had the most direct impact on Division III student-athletes was not voted on, but instead was referred to the Division III Interpretations and Legislative Committee for additional analysis and consideration.

If it had been approved at the Convention, it would have allowed Division III student-athletes to participate in a full season of practice with their team and still claim a “redshirt season” if the athlete did not compete in any games against another university.

As a result, the current Division III rule is still in effect. That rule charges a student-athlete with a “season of participation” even if they only practice with their team beyond the first game of the season but even if they don’t appear in a game against another opponent.

 

If you have questions about any actions taken at the NCAA Convention, contact us directly via e-mail at rick@informedathlete.com or by calling 913-766-1235.

We’ve been receiving lots of questions about the rules and academic requirements for a 4-2-4 transfer (from a four-year college to a two-year college, and then transferring to another four-year college).

This type of transfer can be useful for various situations, but here are three of the most common:

  • An athlete wants to leave their four-year college to have a better playing opportunity in their sport and to then be “re-recruited” back to the four-year college level.
  • An athlete needs to focus on their academic responsibilities, raise their GPA, and then return to the four-year college level (perhaps even to the four-year college they previously attended).
  • Or, an athlete simply wants to attend a less-expensive college closer to home while they determine where they want to eventually enroll to earn their four-year degree.

The confusing part about the 4-2-4 transfer rules

The academic requirements and other rules (such as number of semesters required at the two-year college) are different depending upon whether the athlete will end up at the NCAA Division I, Division II, Division III, or NAIA level.

Of course, the natural question then becomes “How do I know what requirements to satisfy if I’m not even sure what college level – let alone the specific college – that I’m going to end up at??”

This is a situation in which one of our confidential consultations can be very helpful to explain these specific rules and the differences between the rules for different divisions. We can also provide a detailed Transcript Review to advise on your athlete’s progress toward satisfying these academic requirements.

Have Questions & Need Help?

NCAA 4-2-4 Transfers can be useful for various situations but can be confusing to navigate without assistance.

For help in navigating the academic requirements and rules and strategies for successful 4-2-4 transfers, schedule a confidential Transfer Consult online, call us at 913-766-1235 or send an email to rick@informedathlete.com

We are often asked during a phone consultation “What is the best time for our son or daughter to inform their coach and school that they want to transfer?” Certainly, this will depend upon a number of factors.

Here are important things to consider before an athlete enters their name into the Transfer Portal:

  • Did the athlete sign a National Letter of Intent with this college, and how long have they been enrolled there?
  • Has the athlete already started competing during their season and triggered the use of a season of eligibility? (Or, for NCAA Division III athletes, have they continued practicing with their team even if they are not playing in games for their college?)
  • Is there an injury or illness involved which might permit them to receive a medical hardship waiver?
  • Is the athlete planning to finish out the academic year at their current college, or would they prefer to leave at the semester?
  • Do they want to retain their athletic scholarship through the conclusion of the academic year?
  • Does the athlete feel that it’s more important for them to finish out their current season with their teammates or do they want to get started right away on being able to contact coaches at other colleges?

What frequently happens once an athlete requests placement in the Transfer Portal

Once a student-athlete tells their coach they’re planning to transfer, they are often removed from the team. In addition, sometimes, the athlete will be asked to sign a form stating that they are voluntarily withdrawing from their team. Signing a withdrawal form can result in the athlete’s scholarship being immediately cancelled.

Do you Need Help Navigating the Transfer Process?

Schedule a confidential Transfers consultation online or call us at 913-766-1235.  In a confidential consultation, we’ll discuss your student-athlete’s current situation, the factors that should be considered before taking action, and the steps and rules involved with a transfer to another university.

NCAA Division I or II athletes who are thinking about putting their name in the Transfer Portal before the next semester or quarter begins should consider these things:

For NCAA Division I Student-Athletes

When an athlete submits their name for the Transfer Portal during the period between terms, their university has the right to cancel the athlete’s scholarship before the next term begins.

If the athlete is planning to stay at their current university this Spring while exploring other opportunities for next Fall, this could potentially have devastating financial consequences.

For NCAA Division II Student-Athletes

The rule is a bit different. The school doesn’t have the right to immediately cancel the athlete’s scholarship before the next term begins as long as the athlete is academically eligible and is fulfilling any other athletic responsibilities that their coach and athletic department expect of them.

However, if the athlete doesn’t want to continue practicing and working out with their team after putting their name in the Transfer Portal, a Division II university would have the right to immediately cancel the athlete’s scholarship if their coach or athletic department interpret their actions as quitting their team.

Do You Have Questions?

If your athlete is considering a transfer and you would like to review and discuss the Transfer rules, you can schedule a confidential Transfer Consult online. You can also send an email to rick@informedathlete.com or call us at 913-766-1235.

This article is written to give junior college athletes a heads-up to potential eligibility issues that can create huge problems if they plan to transfer to an NCAA school.

And even worse, if the eligibility issue isn’t discovered until AFTER the JUCO transfer has already started attending an NCAA school, the athlete won’t be eligible to compete in their first year at the new university.

My advice to avoid these headaches and problems is to be clearly informed and knowledgeable about the academic requirements they must meet in order to transfer to an NCAA school.

Please keep in mind that student-athletes who start their college career at a junior college can have differing academic requirements when it comes time to transfer to an NCAA school.

For example:

  • Was the Junior College Student-Athlete a “qualifier” or “non-qualifier” coming out of high school? The answer to this will affect what a junior college transfer athlete must achieve academically to be eligible to compete at an NCAA DI or DII school.
  • How many semesters did the Junior College Student-Athlete attend the junior college as a full-time student?
  • Was the Junior College Student-Athlete required to earn their Associates Degree to be academically eligible upon transfer to an NCAA school?

These are the types of issues that can derail a Junior College Student-Athlete’s athletic and academic career and end up costing them personally and financially.

If a Junior College Transfer Athlete has not satisfied all necessary NCAA academic requirements BEFORE they begin attending their new university, they won’t be able to compete during their first academic year of attendance and may also not be qualified to receive an athletic scholarship!

Knowing your eligibility status ahead of time can allow a student-athlete to make the adjustments that are needed to avoid disappointment and possibly financial problems down the road.

If you are a Junior College Transfer Athlete (or parent of one) and you are uncertain about your NCAA academic eligibility status, Informed Athlete can help:

If you have questions, contact Rick Allen at 913-766-1235 or send an email to rick@informedathlete.com.

It’s the time of year when the NCAA is starting to publicize proposed rule changes that will be voted on at the annual NCAA Convention in January. I’ll highlight those that will likely be of most interest to student-athletes and families.

Division I

The Division I Council has introduced a proposal to reduce the number of official visits a men’s basketball recruit can take to a Division I university from five to three during each of three periods:

  • Junior year of high school.
  • Senior year of high school.
  • After high school graduation (for a transfer or during a prep school year for example).

The proposal would also reduce the length of official visits in men’s basketball to 36 hours from 48. Members of the Council believe many student-athletes are taking official visits simply because they can and not because they intend to attend a school.

Division II

If approved, the Division II transfer rules will be revised to more closely align with the Division I transfer rules. Perhaps the most important revision would be that a Division II coach or athletic department would not be able to object to a student-athlete’s opportunity to be eligible in their first year at their new university.

The Division II transfer rules would be revised to:

  • Require a transferring student-athlete to view an NCAA-produced educational video before an institution may enter the student-athlete’s information into the NCAA Transfer Portal;
  • Eliminate the previous institution’s ability to object to use of the one-time transfer exception;
  • Require the new head coach and the student-athlete to certify in writing that they had no direct or indirect contact about a possible transfer prior to the student-athlete entering the Transfer Portal;
  • Establish June 15 as the date by which a student-athlete must enter the Transfer Portal to utilize the one-time transfer exception (not applicable to midyear transfers); and
  • Permit institutions to reduce or cancel an athletics aid agreement previously signed for the next academic year.

Division III

The Division III Presidents Council is supporting a proposal that would change the current “season of participation” rule to specify that only actual competition against another institution would trigger the use of a season.

  • A student-athlete would be charged with the use of a season of eligibility if the student-athlete competes at any point during the traditional season in their sport.

Please note that these rule changes are not currently planned to take effect until next June. We will be updating you and confirming the approval of these proposals when that occurs.

In the meantime, if you have questions about any of these proposals, contact us at rick@informedathlete.com or by calling 913-766-1235.

I came across a sports media report a few days ago that 131 football players from Bowl Subdivision programs have entered the NCAA Transfer Portal since August 1.

The report didn’t include this info but it would be interesting to know how many of those entered the Portal before their season started compared to how many have entered the Portal in the middle of their season.

That report also noted that Florida State has the most football players in the Transfer Portal with 5, while Air Force, Colorado State and Syracuse all have 4 players in the Portal.

We’ve been receiving a large number of inquiries about the Transfer Portal recently.

We know that the number of athletes entering the Portal will be increasing for many sports over the next few weeks, especially as Fall sports move closer to the end of their season.

A recent article published to our website, When is the Best Time For An Athlete To Enter The NCAA Transfer Portal?, lists 4 things to consider before an athlete files a request.

If your athlete is considering a Transfer and wants to be prepared to enter the Portal at the end of their season or even before, schedule a Transfer Consultation online or contact us via rick@informedathlete.com or 913-766-1235.