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Download the NCAA Transfer Guide, which contains basic information you need to know about transferring to an NCAA college.

You are a transfer if...
You were ever enrolled full-time in a two or four year school.
You ever went to practice
You practiced or played while you were enrolled part-time

What Type of Transfer Are You?
Qualifier: A student-athlete who has met NCAA Eligibility requirements.
Partial Qualifier: A freshman who has met some of the academic requirements, but not all. They
 -Can practice
-Can receive financial aid
-Must sit out one year
-DII Only, DI does NOT have partial qualifiers
Non-Qualifier: An S/A who has not met academic requirements.
-Can't practice or play
-No financial aid for one year.
-Three seasons of competition in Division I
-Automatic non-qualifier if you never registered for the clearinghouse.

When do you need permission to contact?
If you're now full-time in a four-year school
A written letter from your AD (or admin/compliance).
You may write to any NCAA college saying that you're interested in transferring, but the new coach must not discuss transferring with you unless they have received written permission from your current school.
If your current school will not give you a written permission to contact, you will have to sit out a year or appeal.

When DON'T you need permission?
You are attending a NJCAA, NCCAA school.
DIII to DIII school. In which case you use a "Self Release" to allow the second school to contact you about transferring.
-Sample self-release at ncaa.org
-Sitting out (or year of residence)

If you transfer from a four-year college to an NCAA school, you must complete one academic year in residence before you can play at the new school.
-You must be enrolled in and pass a full-time schedule.
-Summer school terms and part-time enrollment do not count.
-This is true in all cases unless you qualify for a one-time transfer exception or waiver (extenuating circumstances like illness).

Review: who has to sit out a year?
Intra-conference (usually)
Basketball, ice hockey, football, baseball.
If you have transferred from a 4 year school before.
If you are not academically eligible
One-time Transfer Exception

You may be immediately able to play a sport at your new school if you:
-Do not transfer to a Division I school for football, men's or women's basketball, men's ice hockey (or baseball as of August 2008).
-Have never transferred before from a four year school.
-Are academically eligible (making progress towards your degree)
-Receive a release agreement from the school from which you are transferring.
-Conferences and individual schools can have their own more restrictive transfer rules.

Your sport is discontinued.
You have never been recruited by the school you plan to attend.
Special situations in football (I-A to I-AA or I-AA to I-AA without scholarship).
If you did not practice or play for 2 years

Five-year Clock
If you play at a DI school, you have five years to play four seasons of competition.
-Even if you sit out a year
-Even if you go part-time
-Clock starts the minute you become a fulltime student at ANY college.

10-Semester/15-Quarter Clock
The first time you enroll as a full-time student you start your 10-semester/15-quarter clock of eligibility.
-Division II or III schools
-You must complete all your seasons of competition in that time
-You are not charged during a term that you are not enrolled in school or go part-time.

Junior College Transfer
If you are a two-year college transfer, you do not need a release.
You may be required to get your degree in some cases or else you will have to sit out a year (academic year in residence).

NAIA to NCAA Transfer
Must have written permission to contact
The student-athlete should get this release from their athletic department.
Two Options
-Write releases to specific schools
-Write a general release that the s/a can send to any schools they might consider.

NAIA Transfers
You do not need a release to talk to the 2nd NAIA coach
You will need a release from the original school if you want to play right away.
Without a release you will have to sit out for an extended period of time before you can participate in athletics at the new school.
When an NAIA coach communicates with a student who has the potential to transfer to their school, this coach must send a letter to the student-athlete's current coach. Therefore, it is probably in a student-athlete's best interest to notify their current coach that they are thinking about transferring.

As a general rule an NCAA coach must have written permission from the NAIA school before they may communicate with a student-athlete who wishes to transfer to their school from an NAIA school.
The student-athlete should get this release from their athletic department.
It is up to the athletic department at the NAIA school whether they will only write releases to specific schools the student-athlete specifies, or if they will write a general release that the student-athlete can send to any schools they might consider.

I want to transfer
Refer to the NCAA transfer guide (make a link) and the FAQ on the NCAA site. Immediately and call the NCAA (add number) to determine your eligibility status and familiarize yourself with the NCAA rules.
Determine if you are eligible
-Did you fulfill NLI requirements?
-Are you academically in good standing?
-Are you a qualifier, partial qualifier, non-qualifier?
Determine what release forms you need to get.
-Do you have written permission to contact?
-Coaches are required to have a transfer release in hand BEFORE speaking to a student-athlete from a four year college (scholarship or not).
-If you do not have a release the interested coach needs to inform their Compliance Officer and one will be sent to the your current institution requesting permission to contact

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