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The NCAA institutes new transfer and redshirt rules

The NCAA fumbles their attempt to fix the football transfer rules.

Texas Tech v Texas Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

In the past few weeks, the NCAA has announced two new rules for football. In typical NCAA fashion, they got one rule completely right and the other completely wrong.

The first rule allows schools to redshirt any player who plays in four games or less in a season. This expansion of the redshirt rule allows teams to get young players some game experience without burning an entire redshirt year on them. One of the reasons this rule likely picked up steam is the increased decision of players to not play in bowl games. When a starting player chooses to forgo their bowl game the team is left in a position where they might have no choice but to play a young player who they had been redshirting. It also allows coaches to sit players who might be on the border of too hurt to play. Now a young player could fill in for a few games while the starter gets healthy and then continue to redshirt after the starter returns.

This new rule makes sure that neither the program or the player get punished if an emergency arises. The rule makes a lot of sense and the NCAA should be applauded since it benefits both the university and the athlete.

They should have stopped while they were ahead, but they also announced that they had set a new transfer rule for athletes. Under the new rule, athletes no longer have to ask their current school for permission to transfer. In theory, this new rule would allow a player like Jonathan Giles to transfer to any school he wanted, including any school in the Big 12. Teams would no longer be able to hold something over an outgoing athletes head.

This sounds like a great rule right? But not so fast, just read the fine print. Upon further reading, you will see that conferences are allowed to make rules that are more strict than the national rule. This means that conferences can still choose whether or not they will allow athletes to transfer within the conference. With this one sentence, they simply made the rule pointless. What good is a rule that no conference has to follow? I have no doubt that most conferences will decide to have a rule that does not allow athletes to transfer within the conference. It also makes you wonder why the NCAA exists if conferences are simply allowed to make their own rules which supersede the NCAA’s.

These two rules show exactly why the NCAA doesn’t have a clue and can’t get out of its own way.


What Grade do you give the NCAA for these new rules?

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  • 9%
    (15 votes)
  • 29%
    (49 votes)
  • 37%
    (63 votes)
  • 23%
    (39 votes)
166 votes total Vote Now