The NCAA is changing a rule that allows schools to block student-athletes from transferring to different programs.
"The Division I Council adopted a proposal this week that creates a new "notification-of-transfer" model", the NCAA writes.
Previously, a football player who played in a game or fewer lost a year of eligibility but could appeal to get the year back because of injury or other reasons.
Student-athletes have five years to complete four seasons of competition, so the new rule will allow an athlete to use a redshirt, if it hasn't been previously used, in up to four games of competition during the season.
The previous transfer rule, which required student-athletes to get permission from their current school to contact another school before they can receive a scholarship after transfer, was meant to discourage coaches from recruiting student-athletes from other Division I schools. "I'm proud of the effort the Transfer Working Group put forth to make this happen for student-athletes, coaches and schools". None of the options were in the Big 12.
The new transfer rule goes into effect October 15. The proposal was initially tabled in April over concerns about timing, the number of games and potential application to other sports, according to a release by the NCAA.
"This change promotes not only fairness for college athletes, but also their health and well-being", Miami AD Blake James said in a statement to the NCAA on the redshirt rule change.
"Redshirt football student-athletes are more likely to remain engaged with the team, and starters will be less likely to feel pressured to play through the injuries".
Mid-year enrollees will not be allowed to participate in bowl games but, other than that, there are no limitations on the four games redshirt players can participate in.
American Football Coaches Association executive director Todd Berry lobbied for the redshirt rule change for years and reiterated it had "unanimous" support from the coaches. "Coaches will appreciate the additional flexibility and ability to give younger players an opportunity to participate in limited competition".
In an attempt to prevent schools from tampering with student-athletes already enrolled at another institution, the NCAA has made tampering a Level 2 violation.
More changes could be on the wayAnother financial aid element, autonomy legislation that governs when a school can reduce or cancel aid, may be adjusted next week by the autonomy conferences.