NCAA expects to vote on one-time transfer waiver

The NCAA could be set for a busy spring, with a vote expected on a one-time transfer waiver and proposals being discussed regarding name, image and likeness.

According to a report by D1 Baseball, the NCAA Division I Council is expected to discuss a one-time transfer waiver on April 24 and then vote on May 20. The report also states that the waiver would go into effect immediately, granting all first-time transfers immediate eligibility for the 2020-21 season.

MAC commissioner Jon Steinbrecher, also the chairman of the NCAA working group in charge of the transfer proposal, told Stadium earlier this week that a vote will be held at the council's next meeting.

"Contrary to any speculation, nothing has been determined yet," Steinbrecher said. "There's been no decision made, no date attached to it yet."

There are currently 746 Division I men's basketball players in the transfer portal, 181 of them classified as graduate transfers. That means 565 players have entered the portal with the expectation of sitting out the 2020-21 season, in accordance with previous NCAA transfer regulations. If a change is enacted that would allow first-time transfers to play immediately at their next school, and it's put into effect for next season, most of those 746 players would be able to play right away.

If the vote passes in late May, there could also be an influx of first-time transfers into the portal.

The NCAA is also expected to take further steps in regard to student-athletes being able to profit from their name, image and likeness.

Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president of Division I, said Thursday afternoon that the recommendations from the working group will be "robust."

"I think there may be some who are actually surprised, candidly, at how far these recommendations are going and how robust they are," Lennon said in a video interview posted by the NCAA.

California and Colorado have enacted name, image and likeness laws. Florida approved a bill expected to go into effect July 1, 2021.

Lennon made it clear that the NCAA won't be putting forth a pay-for-play model.

"I see a great confidence that our membership has that this is the right thing to do" Lennon said, "but you need to have the right parameters to make sure that it is not a pay-for-play model, that we don't create an employer-employee relationship, that we protect the integrity of the recruiting process.

According to the NCAA's timeline, the deadline for submission of legislative proposals for Division I is Nov. 1, 2020. A vote was expected to be held at the NCAA convention in January 2021, although Lennon said in the interview that there is no timeline for a vote.