NCAA Grants Extra Year of Eligibility For Winter Sports Athletes

By Matthew Filipovits on October 16, 2020 at 10:00 am
Feb 8, 2020; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions forward John Harrar (21) and Minnesota Golden Gophers forward Alihan Demir (30) reach for the rebound during the first half against the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Bryce Jordan Center. Mandatory Credit: Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports
© Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports
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The NCAA's Division I Council has ruled that all winter sports athletes will be given a free year of eligibility as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This follows the same ruling that was applied for both spring and fall sports.

This free year of eligibility means any player, including freshmen who would usually redshirt, can appear in every contest, and not lose a year of eligibility. This also means that outgoing seniors would opt to return for another season in 2021-22 if they please, but those cases are expected to be few and far between.

The pandemic has already delayed the start of a variety of winter sports, as they do not have the luxury of being able to compete outside where the virus has proven less transmittable. 

Winter sports are set to get under in the coming weeks, with many schedules still yet to be finalized.

The ruling applies to basketball, hockey, wrestling, gymnastics, swimming & diving, and indoor track athletes.

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