NCAA ponders one-time transfer rule for all sports
Division I athletes in all sports could transfer once and be immediately eligible if the Division I council adopts an idea being considered by the Transfer Waiver Working Group.
The NCAA announced Tuesday that the concept would allow approval for all first-time transfers from four-year schools, provided they:
- Receive a transfer release from their previous school.
- Leave their previous school academically eligible.
- Maintain their academic progress at the new school.
- Leave under no disciplinary suspension.
Those transfer rules are in place for undergraduates in all sports except football, men's and women's basketball, baseball and men's ice hockey. In those sports, a transfer must sit out a year, unless receiving a waiver from the NCAA for immediate eligibility.
The proposal to switch the rules for all sports could go up for vote at the Council's meeting in April, with the new transfer criteria in place for the 2020-21 school year.
"The current system is unsustainable. Working group members believe it's time to bring our transfer rules more in line with today's college landscape," working group chair Jon Steinbrecher, commissioner of the Mid-American Conference, said in a news release. "This concept provides a uniform approach that is understandable, predictable and objective. Most importantly, it benefits students. ...
"More than a third of all college students transfer at least once, and the Division I rule prohibiting immediate competition for students who play five sports hasn't discouraged them from transferring. This dynamic has strained the waiver process, which was designed to handle extenuating and extraordinary circumstances."
The group said it will seek feedback from its Division I members before the April meeting.