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If a student-athlete is classified by the NCAA as a Non-Qualifier (based on their high school academic record and their ACT or SAT score), they are prohibited from competition, practice, and an athletic scholarship in their freshman year.

Non-Qualifier status also impacts the academic requirements that a student-athlete must satisfy at a two-year college to successfully transfer if they choose to start their college career at that level before moving on to a four-year university.

A proposed rule being considered by NCAA Division II for the 2021 NCAA Convention in January may change that.

This proposal will allow ALL NCAA DII incoming freshman student-athletes as well as two-year college transfers the opportunity to practice and receive an athletic scholarship in their first year of attendance at a Division II university.

However, while Non-qualifier status athletes would be able to practice and receive an athletic scholarship their first year, they would still be prohibited from competition.
If approved at the NCAA Convention, the rule will benefit Non-Qualifiers first enrolling at a Division II university after August 1, 2021.

We’ll continue to keep you updated on this and other new developments as they happen.  In the meantime, contact us if you have any questions by calling 913-766-1235 or sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com.

Last week, NCAA Division I leaders extended the recruiting Dead Period for all Division I coaches through the end of July due to continued COVID-19 concerns.

Division I coaches are limited to recruiting by phone, text, email, and other messaging, as well as looking at film and by speaking with high school, junior college and/or club coaches.

Meanwhile, Division II coaches entered a recruiting Quiet Period on June 1.

This means that although the Division II coaches are still restricted from conducting any off-campus recruiting activities, they can conduct sports camps and clinics, invite recruits to campus and have in-person recruiting conversations, as long as those interactions take place on campus.

As the parent of a high school or junior college recruit, how should you or your athlete approach this situation?

Some suggestions:

  • Check out opportunities in your state or region to participate in recruiting camps or showcase events this summer. Because coaches can’t leave campus to conduct recruiting, they will be relying more than ever on the word of event organizers and junior college or smaller college coaches on who were the top players at each event.
  • Attend recruiting/skills camps that may be offered at junior colleges or small colleges in your area. Don’t discount the information that junior college coaches may share with NCAA coaches. Also, don’t discount the possibility of starting off your college career at a junior college to improve your skill level, or to gain strength and speed, so that you can then be recruited by NCAA programs from a junior college.
  • Create a recruiting video that you can send out to coaches.
  • Prepare an athletic resume that you can send to coaches along with a recruiting video. Highlight not only your athletic skills and abilities, but also your academic performance and any leadership or other extra-curricular activities you’ve been involved in.
  • Set up a page for your athlete on one of the recruiting websites that permit you to create your own page and profile.

Here are some of the ways that we can provide objective guidance and information to help you and your athlete navigate through this current challenging environment.

  • We can explain the academic requirements that your athlete will need to satisfy to be eligible to compete at the college level, as well as the transfer academic requirements if they want to start off at the junior college level, or just take part-time courses at the beginning of their enrollment.
  • We can explain the differences in the rules regarding athletic scholarships at the various college levels so that you are prepared if an offer of a scholarship is made to your athlete.
  • For a spring sport recruit who may be faced with overcrowded college rosters this next year, we can also explain the rules and implications of taking a gap year after high school graduation. That option may provide some benefits both athletically to gain size and strength and improve skill level, as well as academically to take part-time course work while postponing the start of the athlete’s eligibility clock.

If you have questions, concerns, or are confused about what to do and how to navigate the recruiting process, we can help you understand and provide scenarios and options for what is in the best interest of your athlete. Schedule a private and confidential Scholarship Strategies Consultation online or by calling us at 913-766-1235 or sending an email to rick@informedathlete.com.

Not being classified as an NCAA Qualifier out of high school can cause all kinds of problems for student-athletes throughout their college career.  Many high school athletes fall through the cracks and don’t meet the academic requirements to be classified as an NCAA Qualifier because they:

  • Don’t know what “Qualifier Status” is,
  • Weren’t planning early enough in high school, or
  • Had bad or incorrect advice regarding college athletic eligibility

The following 3 common scenarios show how important it is for high school athletes and their families to know and understand NCAA Qualifier Status.

My athlete plans to go to an NCAA DI or DII school out of high school:

If an athlete doesn’t meet the NCAA Division I or DII requirements for freshman eligibility because they didn’t take the required core courses, or don’t have the necessary GPA, SAT or ACT test score, the athlete:

  • Cannot receive an athletic scholarship during their freshman year unless the requirements for “Academic Redshirt” or “Partial Qualifier” are met.
  • Will NOT be eligible to compete with the team during their freshman year.
  • Will not be eligible to practice with the team or attend weight training with their team.

My athlete plans to go to an NCAA DIII School:

Qualifier Status is a factor if your high school athlete goes to an NCAA DIII school and then decides to transfer to a DI or DII school before they complete a full year of school.

My athlete is going to a Junior College out of high school and then plans to transfer to an NCAA DI or DII.  Does Qualifier Status matter?

The answer is YES, if an athlete goes to a JUCO their freshman year as a non-qualifier, they:

  • Will NOT be eligible to transfer to a Division I program after just one year.
  • Will have more extensive academic requirements at the JUCO to be immediately eligible upon transfer to a Division I or Division II program (more required junior college courses).

If you have questions: 

If you’d like a confidential phone consult to discuss your athlete’s specific situation, schedule an eligibility consult online or send an email to rick@informedathlete.com.