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NCAA Proposes Change To The Hardship Transfer Rule

The NCAA has proposed a change to the transfer rule. What it essentially boils down to is that student athletes who transfer due to "difficult life circumstances" (think Ryan Harrow last season) would no longer be granted immediate eligibility, but rather would be given an extra season of eligibility.

Essentially, they would still have to sit out a year in residence, but that year would not count against their eligibility. That would leave student-athletes in these circumstances with a total of six years of eligibility.

From the press release:

Some student-athletes who transfer schools as a result of difficult life or family circumstances should be allowed an extra year to complete their eligibility, according to a recommendation from the Division I Leadership Council.

Council members propose that student-athletes who cannot transfer and play immediately without a waiver be allowed a sixth year to complete their four years of eligibility, if they qualify.

The change would primarily impact student-athletes who play baseball, basketball, bowl subdivision football and men’s ice hockey as well as those in other sports who already used the one-time transfer exception.

These student-athletes would no longer be able to seek a waiver to transfer and compete immediately.

Ostensibly, this is being done to "...encourage student-athletes who must transfer based on hardships to focus on the circumstances prompting the transfer during their first year and adjust to their new school, while giving them a season back to complete their eligibility" Cynics will say that it's to help reduce the number of transfers that have to be adjudicated, and result in media criticism of the NCAA. Now, the decision will be less onerous and have fewer repercussions for the NCAA.