The previous transfer rule, which required student-athletes to get permission from their current school to contact another school before they can receive a scholarship after transfer, was meant to discourage coaches from recruiting student-athletes from other Division I schools.
For the first time, college football players will be able to participate in part of a season, not miss time due to injury, and still be able to redshirt.
To address one specific concern, the Council specified that midyear enrollees can not use the exception to play a bowl game before their first academic term.
"This change promotes not only fairness for college athletes, but also their health and well-being", NCAA Division I Council chair and Miami athletic director Blake James said in a statement.
The NCAA has approved a massive change to transfer rules as student-athletes will no longer be required to gain permission to contact schools once they decide to leave their current institution, essentially ending the practice of blocking transfers by schools.
"This creates a safe place for student-athletes to have a conversation with their coaches and makes the whole process more transparent", said Nicholas Clark, a former player at Coastal Carolina who represents the Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
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Under the new system, a student can inform his or her current school of a desire to transfer, and then the school must enter that student's name into a national transfer database within two business days.
To be clear, undergraduates still have to sit out a year when transferring. Conferences, however, can still put rules in play that forbid student-athletes from transferring within the conference without sitting out a year or some other stipulation.
Before, playing one snap of Division I football would have claimed a season of eligibility. Golfers, tennis players and other athletes in traditionally nonrevenue sports can transfer one time without sitting out.
"Another 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.
Beyond this change, the Transfer Working Group is considering other transfer issues, including the processes surrounding postgraduate transfers. Now that will be re-examined in the fall.