SPRING SPORT ELIGIBILITY
Q: We have a baseball player who played in a chargeable league last summer and into the fall. We knew it was a chargeable league, but we expected that he’d also be playing for our school in spring 2020, and it would all be rolled into one season of competition. What happens to him now?
- If a student is identified in the winter and spring quarters but was not identified in the Fall 2019 quarter, the student will still receive three additional quarter terms of attendance. In other words, the student could compete in a spring sport through his or her 16th, 17th and 18th quarter TOA.
- If a student was enrolled in the Winter 2020 quarter but not the Spring 2020 quarter, the student will receive two additional quarter terms of attendance. In other words, the student could compete in a spring sport through his or her 16th and 17th quarter TOA.
- If the student was enrolled in the Fall 2019 quarter but not the Winter or Spring 2020 quarters, the student will not be awarded any addition quarter TOAs.
Conversely, terms of attendance are used for a variety of reasons other than simply the 10 TOA limit, like verifying how many hours a student earns in their recent TOAs. For that reason, “waiving” the spring 2020 term of attendance would have had a domino effect implicating several other rules. Instead, granting two (2)additional TOAs was the cleanest solution.
Q: I’m a baseball player but am recovering from an injury and didn’t plan to play this year. I wasn’t on the eligibility certificate and don’t think I was listed on the roster. Will that prevent me from getting the two extra TOAs?
In all likelihood, a student who withdraws from coursework at this point will have that enrollment remain on their transcript as Ws, thereby signaling the student was identified and qualifies for the extra terms of attendance. If your institution would remove the coursework completely and result in the student’s transcript showing only part-time enrollment, understand this could cause complications with the student’s ability to use the extra 11th and 12th TOAs. A best practice would be to preserve documentation that the student was identified for the duration of the semester and through March 16 before withdrawing from coursework.
Q: We have a senior outdoor track student-athlete who will graduate in May 2020, and now has one more season of competition. If she transfers and pursue a master’s degree at a different NAIA school could she use her final season of competition?
Q: We have a student transferring to us for the 2020-2021 academic year. She was not charged a season in the spring of 2020, but did compete before the season was cancelled. Will she have to serve the 16-week residency since she competed? (Added 4/3/2020)
SENIORS AND GRADUATE STUDENTS
Q: We have a senior golfer who is graduating in May 2020. He wants to return to use the extra season of competition. He’s not sure yet if he wants to pursue a second baccalaureate degree or a master’s program. What are his options, and what are the hourly enrollment requirements?
Q: We have a senior golfer who is graduating May 2020, and using the senior exception this spring (only taking six (6) hours because that’s all he needed to graduate). He wants to return to use the extra season of competition. What do we need to consider in thinking about his eligibility?
- Spring 2020 is considered a term of attendance.
- Spring 2020 will NOT be included in calculation of the 24/36-Hour Rule in the future (consider his two previous TOAs instead).
- He can only use the graduating senior exception one time, meaning he’ll have to be enrolled full-time to compete in any future term.
- If he fails to graduate in May 2020, any remaining eligibility is forfeited and he has no more eligibility in the NAIA.
Q: A senior softball player is going to graduate in May 2020. She’d like to return as a graduate student, and the program requires nine (9) hours to be full-time. Will she still have to meet the 24/36-Hour Rule as a graduate student next spring?
- Fall 2020: two (2) most recent TOAs are undergraduate = 24 undergrad hours required
- Spring 2021: one (1) most recent TOA is undergraduate, 1 is graduate = 12 undergrad hours + 9 graduate hours required
Q: Some schools are creating options to switch course grading from the standard letter grade to a Pass/Fail model or an S/D/F model (S = satisfactory and takes place of A/B/C letter grades, D and F letter grades are awarded as normal). How would this impact the 2.0 requirement for juniors and seniors?
Q: Will the NAIA still calculate students’ GPAs in the same way? In other words, are any exceptions being made to account for the fact that students are unexpectedly being transitioned to online coursework or to environments not conducive to remote learning, and therefore GPAs may suffer?
Q: We have a student-athlete who was repeating a course previously passed with a ‘D’ in Fall 2019. However, for the Spring 2020 term, our NAIA institution has chosen to offer Pass/Fail for course grading instead of a letter grade. Assume the student receives a ‘P’. How will this affect my student-athlete’s eligibility? (Added 4/3/2020)
Q: We’re closing residence and dining halls on my campus, and one student-athlete is displaced and unable to return home. We’d like to help provide housing or funds for the student to travel home. Can we do that?
Q: Knowing our campus is closing residence and dining halls and some students are displaced or without a reliable food source, some local nonprofit agencies are offering to help. Can our student-athletes take advantage of these opportunities?
Q: If residence or dining halls are closing for the remainder of the semester and student-athletes are displaced, can they stay with a friend until they are able to either return home or move back on campus?
FINANCIAL AID AND MAXIMUM TEAM LIMITS
Q: Since we are unexpectedly allowing seniors in spring sports to have eligibility to return next year, that could make it hard to manage our team financial aid limits for the spring sports. Is there an exception to the financial aid limits for spring sport teams in the 2020-2021 academic year to increase the maximum amount of scholarships? (Added 4/3/2020)
Q: Our outdoor track and field team began to practice in Spring 2020, but we never got the chance to compete in any competitions. Therefore none of our track and field student-athletes meet the definition of a varsity athlete for financial aid reporting purposes. How do we report financial aid if we technically did not have any varsity athletes? (Added 4/3/2020)
Q: We have a student-athlete who competes on both the football and outdoor track and field teams. He represented our school in varsity football games in the fall of 2019, but our outdoor track and field team never actually competed in Spring 2020. Is this student-athlete still considered a dual-sport athlete and can we still split his aid between the two sports? (Added 4/3/2020)
RECRUITING AND PRACTICE RULES
Q: Is the NAIA limiting individual workouts or open-gym style opportunities for spring and/or fall/winter sports? In other words, if the institution allows use of the facility, can two (or more) students use a facility during this time assuming no coach is present?
Q: Now I have a couple graduating seniors who are suddenly interested in transferring elsewhere to keep playing. Do graduating seniors need to be released by me before talking to potential transfer schools?
Q: We want to recruit a freshman junior college softball player who would have completed her first season of competition at the junior college this spring before the season was cancelled. Per the NJCAA, she will not be charged a season of competition this spring. Can my coach contact her directly when this academic year is over? (Added 4/3/2020)
Q: We want to recruit a sophomore junior college softball player who would have completed her second season of competition at the junior college this spring before the season was cancelled. Per the NJCAA, she will not be charged a season of competition this spring, and does have the opportunity to return to the junior college for a third year next year and use her second season. Can my coach contact her directly when this academic year is over? (Added 4/3/2020)