January 22, 2018 PRINT Bookmark and Share

NCAA Vote on Transfer Rules to Come Sooner than Later

CHN Staff Report

The NCAA membership did not vote on new transfer rules at the recently-concluded annual convention, but did adopt a new rule that would allow it to vote as soon as this summer rather than wait until the next round in September.

The proposed new transfer rules being discussed involve the ability of players to change schools without having to sit out one year, as they currently must. Reportedly, there will be an academic component tied into this, the specifics of which are still unclear. This legislation could include the creation of a national database, visible to all schools, where players must report their intention to transfer.

The concern is that any such new rule would create open season on transferring, with players being plucked away from "smaller" programs to larger ones. The upside is more freedom of movement for players often stuck in what they deem bad situations.

In legislation that was passed, the so-called "Autonomy" conferences — the five largest NCAA-wide conferences — adopted a rule allowing incoming recruits to be represented by agents in baseball and hockey. These agents would have to be paid, and the player could not receive any special benefit, and could only represent the players in so far as contract discussions with pro teams that drafted them. If the player didn't sign a pro deal and elected to go to college as originally planned, they would have to terminate the deal with the agent.

Although passed specifically by the Autonomy conferences — which is only the Big Ten in hockey — all schools are allowed to abide by the new rule.

The Autonomy group also approved a proposal that extends health benefits to athletes for at least two years beyond when they leave the school. Fiances and domestic partners are also now eligible to receive those benefits, in addition to spouses.

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