Boot Leg is a football student-athlete enrolled at an FBS institution. Boot wants to transfer, so he can be closer to his family. The institution he has selected is currently going through the reclassification process to change from FCS to FBS. Is Boot eligible to utilize the one-time transfer exception?
No. NCAA Educational Column- 5/23/13- One-Time Transfer Exception — Application During Reclassification from FCS to FBS (I) – states that NCAA Division I institutions should note that while an institution is reclassifying from the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the reclassifying institution is required to meet all applicable FBS requirements (with the exception of scheduling requirements during the first year of reclassification). However, the institution is not an active FBS member until it has completed the reclassification process and been elected to FBS status by the NCAA Division I Board of Directors; therefore, any football student-athletes attending the reclassifying institution who transfer to another FCS institution are FCS to FCS transfers. Consequently, unless the student-athlete is transferring to an FCS institution that does not offer athletically related financial aid in the sport of football, the individual cannot meet the conditions of the one-time transfer exception [see NCAA Bylaw 126.96.36.199.10-(a)].
Further, an institution in the process of reclassifying its football program from FCS to FBS must certify all incoming transfers under FBS regulations. Therefore, a football student-athlete who transfers from an FBS institution to the reclassifying institution is also unable to meet the conditions of the one-time transfer exception [see Bylaw 188.8.131.52.10-(a)]. Finally, a football student-athlete who enrolls midyear at an FCS institution that will begin the reclassification process from FCS to FBS the next academic year must be re-certified in the fall using the transfer regulations that apply to FBS programs.
[References: Bylaws 184.108.40.206 (general rule), 220.127.116.11.10 (one time transfer exception) and 20.4.2 (football subdivision reclassification options)]
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