MAC eliminates intraconference transfer restrictions

CLEVELAND (AP) — The Mid-American Conference is eliminating its policies regarding intraconference transfers and no longer requiring athletes to sit out a season of competition after switching from one MAC school to another.

The announcement Thursday comes about a week before the NCAA Division I Council is expected to move toward allowing all college athletes to transfer once as an undergraduate and be immediately eligible to play.

The MAC said its Council of Presidents unanimously decided to adopt the recommendation made by the conference’s athletic directors.

Commissioner Jon Steinbrecher said the MAC will be governed solely by NCAA transfer regulations moving forward.

The Atlantic Coast Conference earlier this year made a similar move, eliminating its policies that prohibited immediate eligibility when athletes transferred within the league.

The NCAA was moving toward passing legislation in January to make the one-time exception and immediate eligibility available to all college athletes.

Currently, NCAA rules require those Division I athletes who compete in high-profile sports such as football and basketball to sit out a season after transferring to another Division I school.

The NCAA’s scheduled vote in January was delayed after the Department of Justice warned the association its proposed changes to rules regarding name, image and likeness compensation for athletes and transfers might violate antitrust laws.

While NIL reform is still in limbo, the NCAA is trying to move forward with transfer rules.

If new rules still cannot be passed, the Division I Council is prepared to pass a blanket waiver that would allow all qualified transferring athletes to be immediately eligible for the upcoming season.

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