NCAA one-time transfer waivers are out until 2021-22 at the earliest

According to a tweet from Stadium’s Brett McMurphy, one-time transfer waivers for college athletics are off the table until the 2021-22 calendar/season.

This result comes at the end of clunky process from the NCAA, as the organization flails at its attempts to modernize.

Back in early April, reports surfaced that the NCAA Division I Council would meet on April 24 to discuss the implementation of a one-time waiver exemption. The council wasn’t expected to vote on the measure that day; that vote was set for Wednesday, May 20.

At the time, the exemption was expected to pass and be in place for the 2020-21 season. Assuming that came to fruition, transfer athletes would be able to gain immediate eligibility for the following season. For instance: Alan Griffin, a rising junior with two years of eligibility who transferred from Illinois to Syracuse, would be able to suit up for the Orange in the 2020-21 season.

However, after the April 24 meeting, the Division I Council suggested moving an official vote back until Jan. 2021. One week later, the NCAA Board of Governors made the recommendation to not allow for a one-time transfer waiver.

Now, according to McMurphy’s reporting, the Division I Council “approved a resolution” to create legislation for Jan. 2021, which wouldn’t be in use until the 2021-22 year, at the earliest.

Griffin is far from alone, too. In just the realm of men’s college basketball, plenty of non-graduate transfers entered the NCAA portal and picked new programs. Some may have done that with the understanding that there was a good chance they’d redshirt the 2020-21 season. However, others hoped or assumed instant eligibility at their new destination.

A player like Griffin could find other ways to petition for immediate eligibility, but the appeals/waiver process lacks transparency. It’s unclear what qualifies for sufficient reasoning and eligibility. (For whatever it’s worth, there remains optimism that Griffin, specifically, will be able to access a waiver and play next season.)


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