Tag Archive for: Gap Year

A high school recruit entering college next Fall might be competing for playing time against athletes with four years of college experience who may still have 2 seasons of eligibility remaining.

Here’s why:

Many college rosters have been and still are overloaded with athletes who were granted an additional year of eligibility during the Pandemic.

During the 2020 calendar year, almost all college athletes were granted an additional year on their eligibility “clock” AND were not charged with one of their four seasons of playing eligibility, even if they played a full season.

That additional year applied to athletes at both two and four-year colleges in the Spring of the 2019-20 academic year and for Fall and Winter sport athletes who competed during Fall 2020 or began their season that semester.

  • This means that many Spring sport athletes (baseball, softball, lacrosse, etc.) who were freshmen on a college roster in the Spring 2020 semester may still have eligibility available for the 2024-25 academic year.
  • AND that freshmen Fall and Winter sport athletes during the 2020-21 academic year (football, soccer, volleyball, basketball, etc.) may still have TWO years of eligibility remaining after this year.

Over the past few months, I’ve received many calls from current college athletes (or parents) asking if it’s possible for them to have another year of eligibility because their recruitment or their early college seasons were negatively impacted.

This has led me to believe that it might be a good idea for some high school recruits to take a gap year after graduation to continue training in their sport while taking part-time college courses to get a start toward their college degree.

Do You Need Assistance?

If you’d like to have a confidential consultation about the possibility of a gap year for your athlete and factors that you may want to take into consideration, schedule a confidential Eligibility Issues Consultation online, or by writing to rick@informedathlete.com.

It has become more common over the last two years for high school recruits to take a gap year after graduation to continue training in their sport while taking college courses to get a start toward their college degree. The primary reason for this has been college rosters being overloaded with athletes who were granted an additional year of eligibility.

Is this still something that high school recruits should consider? In my opinion, yes!

Almost all college athletes were granted an additional year on their eligibility “clock” and were not charged with one of their four seasons of playing eligibility during the year 2020.

This was applicable to Spring sport athletes during the 2019-20 academic year and for Fall and Winter sport athletes during the 2020-21 academic year. In addition, many junior college and NCAA Division III athletes in Spring sports were also not charged a season for Spring 2021.

That is FIVE YEARS of college athletes who were given an additional year on their eligibility clock – from athletes who were already in their 5th year of college at that time, to athletes who were only college freshmen then and who now have an eligibility clock that might not expire until the end of the 2025-26 academic year.

If you’d like to have a confidential consultation about the possibility of a gap year for your athlete and factors that you may want to take into consideration, schedule a confidential Eligibility Issues Consultation online, or by writing to rick@informedathlete.com.

In some of our recent newsletters, we’ve been suggesting that athletes and families who are concerned about the impact of COVID-19 may want to skip attending college this Fall semester or this year.

Some have expressed concern about their university’s plan for instruction and/or the possible impact on their competitive eligibility if they don’t have a full sports season – or no season at all.

At levels other than NCAA Division I, athletes can preserve one or more semesters or quarters that will count against the 10-semester or 15-quarter eligibility “clock” if they’re not taking classes at all or are only taking a part-time course load.

However, in fairness, that’s only looking at things from an athletics perspective.

There may be other reasons why student-athletes should consider NOT skipping a semester or year of attendance – including having to possibly re-apply for admission or triggering student loan payments.

The link below will take you to a recent article explaining some reasons “Why Missing College This Fall is a Bad Idea.”

https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/loans/student-loans/missing-college-bad-idea

If you’d like to discuss the pros and cons of your athlete not attending college this Fall, schedule a confidential Eligibility Issues consult online or by sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com.