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UPDATE: NCAA tables one-time immediate eligibility transfer waivers until 2021-22

Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Earning immediate eligibility may be harder than originally expected for student athletes next season. The one-time transfer waiver proposal that would allow college athletes to transfer and become immediately eligible at their new schools has been tabled until the 2021-22 academic year, according to a new report by Brett McMurphy of Stadium.

One-time transfer waivers are dead until at least 2021-22 academic year, sources told Stadium, as NCAA Division I Council approved a resolution to develop legislation regarding transfer eligibility for January 2021 that would not be effective until 2021-22 academic year,” McMurphy tweeted Wednesday afternoon.

The NCAA was originally slated to vote on the matter this month. However, things got confusing in late-April when conflicting reports began surfacing regarding when the vote would actually take place. The NCAA then released a statement saying the vote would be postponed until January 2021, but reporters quickly challenged that release after Jon Steinbrecher, the chairman of the group spearheading the proposal, clarified the vote was still set for May.

Now, it looks as though it will be January, after all.

Things have shifted quickly for the NCAA and its student athletes.

In February, the organization announced its Transfer Waiver Support Group was considering the idea, and was seeking feedback from its Division I members. As of April 23, the governing body was expected to pass the immediate eligibility proposal for the upcoming season. At that time, the proposal was viewed as “full-speed ahead” for student athletes who were hoping to change programs without having to sit out a year. But by April 30, things had changed again.

“Changes are not appropriate at this time,” reads the story on the NCAA’s website from that day. “Board members recommended the waiver process be sensitive to student-athlete well-being, especially those impacted by COVID-19 in the interim period.”

It seems as though the forces behind the NCAA have not changed their minds in the weeks since then.

UK Athletics

As far as the BBN is concerned, a season without such waivers would mean no immediate eligibility for Wake Forest basketball transfer Olivier Sarr, Rhode Island basketball transfer Jacob Toppin, Tennessee women’s basketball transfer Jazmine Massengill, Auburn women’s basketball transfer Robyn Benton and Auburn quarterback transfer Joey Gatewood, among others.

Graduate transfers, including Kentucky’s Davion Mintz, will remain immediately eligible. Non-graduate transfers (including the future Wildcats listed above), can still attempt to earn immediate eligibility using other waivers, including the family hardship waiver. Sarr’s best argument is likely the firing of former Wake Forest head coach Danny Manning, who was dismissed from the program shortly after the deadline to declare for the NBA Draft had passed.

After a rollercoaster of news regarding the possibility of a one-time transfer waiver, it looks like things won’t actually be changing anytime soon.


The NCAA has officially released a statement ruling against the proposed one-time transfer exception for the 2020-21 season. The Division I Council approved a resolution Wednesday that outlined its intention to adopt a comprehensive legislative package that will create “uniform, modernized rules governing eligibility after transfer for student-athletes in all sports” by January 2021.

The comprehensive package will address issues that impact transfer, including academic requirements, roster management considerations, transfer notification dates, accountability measures for schools that accept transfer students, and additional education on the transfer rules and process.

The full release is available here.

Article written by Maggie Davis

I love sports, podcasts, long walks on the beach and Twitter (@MaggieDavisKSR)

27 Comments for UPDATE: NCAA tables one-time immediate eligibility transfer waivers until 2021-22

  1. BigBluSoTru
    7:20 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    between Sandy Bell, Matt and Calipari their is no way the make the Ncaa will not grant our transfers their waivers , You can bet Matt along with Sandy are working heir connects to get BBN trnsfers eligible immediately. I’m putting my money onn Matt and Sandy Bell. Cal is the the just in case we need the big gun.

    • JASUN74
      7:53 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      Do you mean Mitch instead of Matt?

    • runningunnin.454
      8:54 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      Don’t pay any attention to him, Jasun; he’s just being silly.

  2. JT55
    7:26 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    I don’t see a scenario in which they grant Sarr eligibility.

    • VirginiaCat
      7:34 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      At a minimum, an uphill battle.

    • sharpshooter81
      7:35 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      Actually his coach being dismissed will get him immediate eligibility because it has been used by other players the last two years. Sarr will play for UK next season.

    • UKBigBlueForever
      11:38 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      He’ll be playing this season (Sarr) for UK. You guys are being paranoid lol

    • ClutchCargo
      9:00 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      Those waivers have been handed out like Halloween candy for a couple of years now. This doesn’t change that at all.

  3. clarks
    7:47 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    They also said earlier this year that even though they are not passing the rule that they would be lenient on waivers because of covid

  4. Bluebloodtoo
    8:03 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    So maybe that 24th ranking makes more sense ?

    • sharpshooter81
      8:28 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      Yeah 24 by someone that no one respects in his own business while a very respected Jeff Borzello has UK 13 without Sarr and top 5 with him.

    • lexattorney
      8:36 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      I said it before and I’ll say it again…as long as it is up to the still-butthurt Mark Emmett and the NCAA Sarr will never play a game for UK. The sad thing is that by letting his vendetta against Kentucky affect his judgment Emmett has made what could have been a great national transfer class the biggest bust since the 1986 NBA Draft.

  5. UKinIN
    8:50 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    From what I’ve seen I wouldn’t be surprised if it was pressure from coaches on their administrations that forced the delay.

  6. IrishCat
    8:55 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    A kid who was earning minutes in his first healthy season at UK can get immediate eligibility at a cheating school that’s not particularly close to his home for absolutely no reason. If Sarr isn’t granted eligibility UK needs to raise hell.

    • terwilliger
      9:38 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink


    • WatchutalkinboutWillis
      9:57 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

      Exactly, if Baker got immediate eligibility at Arizona then why on earth would Sarr not get it for us?

    • ClutchCargo
      9:04 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      And he might sail right on through, no problem. I’m just going to wait until something actually happens before raising hell. lol

    • IrishCat
      11:27 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      I agree Clutch, I’m optimistic, which is why I did say IF.

  7. Han
    9:03 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    Punting again, just like with getting others to judge the Kansas case

  8. TonyMontana
    9:05 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink


  9. runningunnin.454
    10:20 pm May 20, 2020 Permalink

    Yeah, I said two weeks ago that this would not pass; and, Sarr won’t get the waiver. Worth a shot for Cal, I guess, since we always have room on the roster; but, I would think someone would have counseled Olivier, and told him he could probably get a waiver at any school…except UK. The bias is obvious.

  10. BigBluSoTru
    6:47 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

    I didn’t know what his main reason for transfering was until i read it. Just because he wants to play for Uk to get a shot at the next level he bascially said. That ain’t going too work.

    • runningunnin.454
      8:53 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

      No, that was not the main reason. His reason was that he played for a guy for three years, and WF fired him. “I want to pick my coach, not have one picked for me”.

  11. Ipeeblue
    8:20 am May 21, 2020 Permalink

    I hope he transfers to Lousville

  12. KentuckyBoy
    1:21 pm May 21, 2020 Permalink

    In would argue there has never been a BETTER time for the rule to be put into place than RIGHT NOW. NCAA once again proves their concern for the people who actually keep them in their cushy jobs is slim to none. Guess that means we are without Sarr next year. His best bet no is probably the pro route or overseas.

    • desertCard
      8:42 pm May 21, 2020 Permalink

      The virus mess has made all things sports pretty wacky. Instituting this now would makes things even wackier. I’d say that’s exactly why the DIDN’T approve it right now.

  13. KentuckyBoy
    1:21 pm May 21, 2020 Permalink