Transferring to a different college
Sometimes events happen during your college years that lead to you wanting to transfer to a different institution. Such events may be you want to experience a different state or college, you may want to switch to a major that is not offered at your current college, conflict with a coach or team-mate, your grades may not be sufficient, financial changes, homesick or overload or work. There can be many reasons but whatever your reason you will need to know the NCAA rules and regulations and the effects of transferring will have on you and your college career. You may also be transferring because you went to a 2-year school and now want to finish your remaining two years at a NCAA school. This athletic scholarship blog post will explain to you everything you need to know.
Transferring from Junior College to a Four Year School
Your time is about to end at Junior College, which is always a two-year institution. In order to transfer to a NCAA school you will need to be eligible. If you haven’t already registered with the NCAA Clearinghouse you will still need to. If you have not registered its okay, even if you’re in your last year of Junior College you can still register with the Clearinghouse.
In order to be qualified for a NCAA Division I school you will need to have the following:
– You must have graduated from the two year school and maintain a GPA of at least 2.0
– You must have completed 48 semester hours of 72-quarter hours of credits that are transferable to Division I.
– You will be required to attended a two year college as a full time student for the a minim of three semesters or four quarters
If you don’t have the requirements listed above you will not be able to compete for a Division I school but you are able to receive a scholarship and practice with the team. You will just have to sit out of competition for 1 year. You will be known as a partial qualify or non-qualified. If you do have all of above then you will be able to receive a scholarship and compete for the team straight off the bat.
Nearly all Division I schools have academic counselors who are dedicated only to student athletes in helping them through the transferring process. Your new coach should introduce you to one.
Division II also has certain requirements you will need to meet in order to be able to compete and practice with the team. You will need the following to be able to compete at a Division II school.
– Attended a two year school as a full time student for at least three quarters or two semesters
– Graduated from a two year school and have 25% of your credit hours come from your graduation school
– Hold a 2.0 GPA average and complete 12 hours per semester or per quarter which are transferable to a Division II school
Overall the requirements are very similar to Division I. The NCAA states that you need to meet the requirements for either a Division I or II school before you wish to transfer. If you don’t meet the requirements you have to take another semester to meet the requirements if you wish to compete or otherwise you will have to sit out a season.
If you do choose not to take another semester at a two-year school in order to get the grades you need to become a qualifier then you will either be a non-qualifier or partial qualifier. As a partial qualifier you can receive an athletic scholarship but must sit out for one year of competitive competition. You can however practice with the team. As a non-qualifier you are unable to receive a college scholarship, compete or practice with the team for your first year. You can receive financial aid but must not come from an athletic source.
In order to compete at Division III you will need to have completed at least 1 year at a Division III school. This means when you transfer you won’t be able to compete for the first year.
If you did not compete in college sports when you were at junior college then you are able to compete straight away for Division III but if you did compete at Junior College, which you most likely did, you will need to sit out for one year.
At a 4 year school and want to transfer?
If you’re at a four year school and for whatever reason you want to transfer the first thing you need to do before you can take any action is to gain a release form which can be attained from your athletic director. When you have the release form you will be able to start contacting other four-year schools, without it they will simply turn you away. This rule will apply to anyone, so if you’re thinking of having your family or coach contact schools you will still need the releases before you can do so. When you do gain the release form coaches can start to contact you but the same rules apply for the recruiting process as if you were a first time recruit. For example, coaches can only make one call week, see the recruiting chapter for more details on the recruiting process.
Before you get your release you will need to go and talk with your current athletic coach to see if he is willing to release you or not. Even though the release form comes from the athletic director you should still consult your coach to explain why you want to transfer. The reason why you should do this is because the athletic director is going to base their decision on what the coach suggests. The coach most likely will grant you a release, but if you’re on a scholarship and you are one of the key athletes you may find it harder to gain a release form.
What happens if I don’t get the release form?
If you don’t get the release form from the athletic director then you have the option to appeal to the committee made up of members outside the athletic department.
Division I and II
If you’re looking to transfer to a Division I or II school you must complete one full year of residency at the school before you are able to compete for the school. This rules applies any time you transfer and it basically means you have to sit out one year. However, there is expectation to the rule, the most common expectation is the one time transfer exception. In order to be eligible for this expectation you need to meet the following criteria:
– You have never transferred from another 4 year school
– You are athletically eligible and academically eligible
– The school from which you are transferring from gives up the one year residence requirement
– Your sport is not one of the following; Division I football, basketball or men’s ice hockey.
– The school from which you are transferring you did not give you a scholarship
These are the most necessary requirements to meet, for a full version go to www.ncaa.org and then go to the transfer guide.
If you are a student at a Division III school and looking to transfer to another Division III school then you may issue yourself your own release, called a self-release. This allows you to talk with other Division III coaches about transferring to them. If however, you have ambition to compete in Division I or II you will need to get a written release from you athletic director. You will have to sit out one year of competition at a Division II School or I unless you meet one of the exceptions that were listed in Division I and II.
Do You Need to Transfer?
Transferring is not an easy process and can leave you having to sit out for one year. You need to consider why you are looking to transfer and if you really need to transfer? Maybe your school is actually good for you but you are not using it to your benefits. We will now look at some of the main reasons why students transfer and tell you how you can combat this problem if it occurs.
This is normally one of the main reasons why students transfer to another school. So what should you do if you’re not getting enough playing time? Well, you should talk with your coach and ask them why you’re not getting enough playing time and ask the coach what you need to do in order to get more playing time.
The coach should explain to you how to improve and what you need to do, remember the coach is there to help you and would rather see you become his top athlete instead. If you do as the coaches says and you still don’t get the playing time you want, then maybe it is best for you to transfer, go speak with your coach again and express how hard you have been trying. The coach will understand and is more likely going to grant your release to the athletic director if he sees you tried and are still unhappy with the amount of playing time you have been receiving.
The next biggest reason why athletes change schools is either to do with losing a scholarship or you are no longer able to play the fees at the college. In this scenario you should always go to your coach and discuss how much you can afford. If the coach realizes that you will have to leave, if he is not able to come up with the rest of the scholarship money, then the coach may take action and offer you a better scholarship.
Sometimes coaches really can’t offer more scholarship money. In this case you can look for finance loans or if your academic grades are good then the coach can help you apply for an academic scholarships. If you still can’t get the necessary money to pay for your fees then you may need to transfer. The coach is most likely going to be understanding and grant your release in this scenario.
Another reason why students transfer is because they find the academic standards challenging. Remember if you start to struggle most sport teams have their own personal tutors, if you’re not using them go find them they should be able to help.
Remember if you do decide to transfer your scholarship will not transfer will you. You may be able to get another scholarship but this might not happen. Be aware that you’re going to have to find the school yourself, the coach is most likely not going to help you.
Most athletes don’t transfer, but if you do, then make sure you learn all the rules and regulations and consult your coach and athletic director. Make sure when you do transfer you get the right school for you because if you’re going to transfer again you may have to sit out another year and remember your five year clock will be running.