Transfer rules: when the college fit isn’t a fit anymore?

When searching for a college there is lots of talk about finding the right fit. Ideally that is a situation where the student athlete intends to stay at a particular college and with a particular team through his/her eligibility and as long as it takes to attain their degree. But what about those times when the college fit isn’t a fit anymore? 


But we all know, unexpected things happen, things like a coach getting fired or moving on to greener pastures. Sometimes academic interest change and the need arises to pursue those interest. These things add up to a transfer. Recently the NCAA made drastic changes to the D1 transfer rules. So for this article, lets consider how  those changes effect D2, D3 and NAIA eligibility. 

While the intent is to find a fit for the next four years, what about those times when the college fit isn’t a fit anymore? 


To begin, it is worth knowing that every division and every organization has its own transfer rules. That means within the NCAA D1, D1AA, D2 and D3 colleges sanction regulations. Organizationally, NAIA colleges have their own transfer rules established and in turns the NCAA also that their own set of regulations. 


While some of these regulation maybe similar its is extremely important to recognize and research the respective regulations when considering transferring. So, in any transfer situation, neither organizations transfer rules supersedes the other.  Plainly stated, when an athlete transfers he or she must stay within the transfer perimeters in order to be eligible. 

Terms of transfer are very complex and often confusing. Boiled down, transfer rules must be followed precisely so that the student athlete is able to compete at the subsequent school. These rules often contain regulations academics and resident regulations that prohibiting immediate competition by an incoming transfer student for a certain period of time. To make things more complex, in October of 2018 the NCAA made a drastic change to the transfer rules in D1. And these changes have caused quite a stir in college athletics. So next week, the topic will be to examine those changes and consider if those changes really benefit the college athlete. 

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