Page 2 of 2 Previous

Continued: NCAA ponders new standard for transfers

  • Article by: JOE CHRISTENSEN , Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 16, 2013 - 12:13 PM

Former Gophers quarterback Max Shortell has a strong arm and good grades, but under current NCAA rules, he'll be ineligible to play for another top-division program next season after transferring from Minnesota.

In coming years, however, athletes with Shortell's grade-point average might not have the same restriction.

The NCAA is considering a rule change that would permit athletes to compete immediately for any school after transferring -- if they carry a 2.6 GPA or better. This is among many topics that will be discussed when the annual NCAA Convention opens Wednesday in Grapevine, Texas.

The transfer legislation is still in the early stages, but one timeline, published internally by the NCAA, suggests a proposal could be presented by the organization's Leadership Council to its Board of Directors by August. That means athletes could be able to transfer under the new rules by the fall of 2014.

"We're still collecting data, research and framing the issues," said Northeast Conference Commissioner Noreen Morris, who chairs the Leadership Council. "The NCAA staff came up with [the 2.6 GPA benchmark] as a concept, and said, 'Here's something you might want to think about.'"

The potential change has appeal for Shortell and other athletes seeking more freedom under NCAA rules. But coaches and administrators fear it could lead to a flurry of students transferring just to change teams.

"I assume it'd be like a free agent market, probably," Gophers men's basketball coach Tubby Smith said. "That's [the NCAA's] big mantra now, to look out for the student-athletes. They already blame [coaches] for the transfers; I wonder who they're going to blame when the transferring doubles."

Athletes on the move

Student-athletes are allowed to transfer once and compete immediately in all sports except football, basketball, baseball and men's ice hockey. Those sports aren't given the exemption because studies show that when athletes from those sports transfer, they are far less likely to graduate.

But research also shows that athletes who transfer with a 2.6 GPA or above are just as likely to graduate as those who stay at their original school. That's why the NCAA picked 2.6 as the benchmark for its Academic Progress Report (APR). A program loses points toward its APR if a student transfers with a GPA below 2.6.

"We thought, should we think about somehow connecting that number to the transfer [eligibility] rules as well?" Morris said. "Is that the right number? We said we need more information."

Shortell's father, Dr. Tom Shortell, believes a better benchmark for the one-time exemption would be a 3.0 GPA. Max Shortell was an Academic All-Big Ten selection and carries a 3.3 GPA. Originally recruited by former Gophers coach Tim Brewster, Shortell stuck with his commitment after the university replaced Brewster with Jerry Kill in December of 2010.

Shortell started two games as a freshman in 2011 and three more as a sophomore but announced his plans to transfer in December, after Kill turned to freshman quarterback Philip Nelson to start the regular season's final six games.

To play right away next season, Shortell would have to transfer down at least to a Football Championship Subdivision (formerly I-AA) school. If Shortell could stay at the top level and transfer to a Football Bowl Subdivision school? Well, Texas is an example of a team reportedly looking for a quarterback who can transfer into the program and play right away.

"I'm not saying [Max] was interested in them, or they were interested in him, but they run a pro-style offense," Tom Shortell said. "They need a quarterback for next September, but Max has to lay out a year. Why is he punished for that? To me, the problem is these coaches can switch jobs at any time, and they don't really realize the ramifications this can have on the kids."

Process playing out

At this week's convention, a Leadership Council subcommittee is expected to review more transfer data and continue discussing potential changes. J.T. Bruett, the University of Minnesota's director of athletic compliance, anticipates a four- or five-month window during which the NCAA would seek feedback from coaches and administrators.

"The transfer procedures at the NCAA Division I level have been in place for quite a while," Bruett said. "So to all of a sudden do a reversal here and allow student-athletes [with a GPA of 2.6 or better] to transfer without penalty, that would be a significant change."

With looser transfer restrictions, lower-level schools could run the risk of becoming feeder programs for the NCAA's elite.

"That's one of our biggest concerns from the Northeast Conference," said Morris, whose league includes Monmouth and Farleigh Dickinson. "We recruit the student-athletes who may not have been recruited by a quote-unquote higher-level league. If we bring them in, develop them, and all of a sudden, other schools are interested, they may feel like they want to play big-time."

Of course, as North Dakota State athletic director Gene Taylor said, that already happens today, with transfers simply accepting they have to sit out one year, where applicable.

Taylor said he'd be nervous if athletes were free to transfer "carte blanche." But he added, "We're in this business for the student-athletes, and I think we do have rules where you scratch your head sometimes and say, 'That's not really fair.'"

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
Toronto 110 FINAL
LA Clippers 98
Boston 88 FINAL
Washington 101
Orlando 102 FINAL
Charlotte 94
Memphis 103 FINAL
Miami 95
Indiana 110 FINAL
Brooklyn 85
New Orleans 100 FINAL
Chicago 107
Atlanta 90 FINAL
Milwaukee 85
Philadelphia 71 FINAL
Utah 88
New York 129 FINAL
Sacramento 135
Minnesota 97 FINAL
Golden State 110
NY Islanders 3 FINAL(SO)
Buffalo 4
Detroit 3 FINAL(OT)
Ottawa 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
New Jersey 1 FINAL
NY Rangers 3
Boston 2 FINAL
Columbus 6
Winnipeg 4 FINAL(OT)
Minnesota 3
Washington 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
Dallas 4 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Nashville 4
Anaheim 1 FINAL(SO)
Arizona 2
Chicago 5 FINAL
Colorado 2
Edmonton 1 FINAL
Calgary 4
San Jose 1 FINAL
Los Angeles 3
Indiana 87 FINAL
Georgetown 91
Maine 43 FINAL
Seton Hall 72
UNC-Wilmington 82 FINAL
Minnesota 108
Georgia State 61 FINAL
Green Bay 78
Jacksonville St 61 FINAL
Jacksonville 75
Kentucky 58 FINAL
Louisville 50
Northern Ky 55 FINAL
Northwestern 76
UAB 58 FINAL
North Carolina 89
IUPUI 55 FINAL
Pepperdine 53
Santa Clara 60 FINAL
St Marys-CA 73
Oakland 56 FINAL
Maryland 72
Gonzaga 87 FINAL
BYU 80
Mercer 77 FINAL
Georgia 86
San Francisco 77 FINAL
Pacific 71
Wright State 55 FINAL
Ohio State 100
Presbyterian 65 FINAL
Virginia Tech 87
Brescia 42 FINAL
Western Ky 89
Tennessee St 46 FINAL
Tennessee 67
Kennesaw St 45 FINAL
Illinois 93
Colorado State 58 FINAL
New Mexico St 57
Portland 61 FINAL
San Diego 58
Wayland Baptist 63 FINAL
Utah State 75
Bristol University 59 FINAL
Weber State 109
Sacramento St 74 FINAL
Utah Valley U 49
Southern Utah 45 FINAL
UNLV 79
SD Christian 50 FINAL
San Diego St 72
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 17 FINAL
Virginia Tech 33
(15) Arizona State 36 FINAL
Duke 31
Miami-Florida 21 FINAL
So Carolina 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Penn State 31
(25) Nebraska 42 FINAL
(24) USC 45
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
Tennessee
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
East Carolina 1/3/15 11:00 AM
Florida
SMU 45 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 96
UCF 64 FINAL
Houston 50
BYU 62 FINAL
Gonzaga 78
Pacific 92 FINAL
San Francisco 54
St Marys-CA 62 FINAL
Santa Clara 61
San Diego 87 FINAL
Portland 65
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

<
Gophers Football Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 amX28-24
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa 11 amX51-14
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State 11 amX31-24
Nov 22 - at Nebraska 11 amX28-24
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin 2:30 pmX34-24
Jan 1 - vs. Missouri noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What's your favorite Gophers football uniform colors?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close