The NCAA transfer portal is about to get even more intense as the penalty-free, one-time immediate transfer rule is expected to pass in January 2021.
Pat Forde and Ross Dellenger of Sports Illustrated obtained official legislation sent to the Division I Council members this week on the proposal allowing a one-time transfer without having to sit out a season. The legislation will be voted on in January and is expected to go into effect on August 1, 2021.
Student athletes who participate in fall and winter sports would be required to notify their school of a transfer by May 1, with potential to be extended to July 1 due to a coaching change or non renewal of a scholarship. All student athletes who participate in a spring sport would have the same July 1 deadline. If a deadline is missed, a student athlete would not be granted the one-time transfer and would not be immediately eligible for competition.
Academically, all athletes who are transferring are required to leave their previous institution eligible for competition in order to transfer and play right away. The legislation also prohibits an athlete from competing for two different schools in the same academic year.
The proposal includes legislation that would eliminate an institution the ability to restrict transfers to specific conferences or universities. There is also no limit expected to be implements on how many transfers a university can add to a roster any given year, meaning coaches could hold back scholarship spots and fill them with all transfers if they chose to.
The landscape has changed drastically in recent years with more and more student athletes transferring or opting to put their name in the transfer portal. It has become rare to see a student athlete complete their eligibility with just one institution. Questions have risen on waivers and why some who transferred were granted immediate eligibility and others were not. The one-time transfer legislation would eliminate a lot of those questions.