Monday, 22 October, 2018

NCAA eases up on Division I football redshirt restrictions

NCAA announces transfer redshirt rule changes NCAA announces change to transfer policy, schools will no longer have ability to block transfers
Cassandra Castillo | 13 June, 2018, 22:09

The NCAA Division I Council announced Wednesday that it will adopt a new proposal that allows student-athletes to transfer without getting the permission of their current institution.

Last season, this opportunity may have led to redshirts like quarterback Tommy DeVito and cornerback Ifeatu Meliufonwu seeing playing time as they prepared to step into larger roles.

Standoffs between athletes and coaches over transfers have often led to embarrassing results for schools standing in the way of players who want to leave.

Miami Athletic Director Blake James, the Division I Council Chair, said it's a move that will benefit both players and coaches.

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The NCAA has made several attempts in recent years to change transfer rules, but this is the first to come up with something substantive - if not comprehensive.

The Division I Student-Athlete Experience Committee will examine how a similar rule could be applied to other sports and will consult with the Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, according to the NCAA. Instead, the NCAA is creating a database in which schools must input a transfer candidate's information within two business days of that player filing their transfer paperwork. As of now, schools can not cut off an athlete's financial aid based on intent to transfer at the end of a term - but the NCAA will vote on two different proposals that would allow institutions to end aid after an athlete's intent to transfer has been made clear. The rule will put an end to a debatable practice wherein a DI coach would prevent an athlete wishing to transfer from contacting specific schools (usually rival schools). The NCAA notes, however, that conferences can enact rules that are more restrictive than the national rule. If he played in one more game, he would not have been eligible for a medical redshirt.

To be clear, undergraduates still have to sit out a year when transferring. That idea has fallen off the table amid concerns about creating an inequitable system that could face legal challenges.

More changes could be on the wayAnother financial aid element, autonomy legislation that governs when a school can reduce or cancel aid, may be adjusted next week by the autonomy conferences. Currently, a student's notification of intent to transfer at the end of a term is not a listed reason a school can use to cancel aid.

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