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JUNIOR/COMMUNITY COLLEGES: ELIGIBILITY RULES UPDATE
(Monday, June 6, 9:30- 11:00 a.m.)

BOB BOTTGER:

Today, we would like to go over the new eligibility rule changes and share concerns about our national office, whatever they may be. We have some representatives with us and we want to take advantage of this opportunity.

I asked Mr. Wayne Baker, who is our guest speaker today to send me a resume. I expected to get this big certified package that I would have trouble carrying back from the Post Office. Modesty is someth~ that we have in this gentleman, and I'm not going to talk about what he put on this little piece of paper he actually sent me. All I can tell you is that when Wayne Enrue left the NJCAA, I couldn't imagine who could take his place and who was going to want to do that type of job. Well, they not only found somebody who can do the job, but someone who has just taken command of the situation and very quickly has gained my respect in terms of his expertise and in terms of his openness about what he can do to help on any topic that so concerns a member of the NJCAA. So without further ado, I'd like to introduce Mr. Wayne Baker.

WAYNE BAKER:

Thanks, Bob. As Bob said, I'm here because of the eligibility changes and I think there are some big changes. Next year is going to be a mess and I hope that we can work that out a little bit. I don't want this to be just an eligibility session because my job goes far beyond eligibility at the NJCAA. We'll talk about eligibility first, but then, we will talk about the NJCAA. I'd like to introduce Mr. Oscar Ericksonj Swede, to those of you who know him. He's the president of the NJCAA and he will be more than willing to answer any questions you may have about the NJCAA with me.

In reviewing the eligibility by going back to 1984, you'll recall we had the eligibility requirement of 10 with a 1.5 each semester. In 1984 the rules were changed. The rules from 1984 through 1986 resemble what you're going to be dealing with next year closely. The rules 1984 through 1986 were the term-by-term eligibility 12 with a 1.75 GPA. In 1986 we felt that there were reasons why we may want to go to an annual eligibility situation. One of the rationales for the annual eligibility situation was due to declining numbers of participants, especially in women's athletics. And not speaking for or against any part of the eligibility rules here, but we did notice an increase in the participants in the women's athletic numbers during the years which we had annual eligibility. In fact, this year's women participation numbers were the highest since 1983 in the NJCAA. That's total participation numbers for the women.

We came to the March meeting in Colorado Springs this year and we saw two different forces. One was an annual eligibility force, staying with what we have dealt with for the last two years, and the other one a term-by-term eligibility. I don't need to tell you where the support of the majority of the presidents of our colleges were behind. The term-by-term concept passed.

If you'll open up your eligibility pamphlet which you will find in your folder, we'll review the new rule changes. Significantly in Section I is the grandfather bit. Next year, for those of you whose regions did not dictate term-by-term eligibility, you will have athletes grand fathered into the annual rules and new athletes coming in that are going by the term-by-term rules. Until we clear this out one year, it will be a sticky year. The kids in anyone term full-time prior to August I, 1988 will be grandfathered under the annual eligibility rules. That will include summer school this summer. If a full-time student this summer has never been a full-time student at your school before, they will be grandfathered under the annual eligibility rule.

That means that kids coming back to your school as second year athletes are eligible on the basis of 24 with a 1.75 and then will remain eligible throughout the season as long as they remain a full-time student. So they will not have a mid-year eligibility requirement. Those are the grand fathered kids. Even if the student didn't play, he's going to be grandfathered next year. And he will be eligible by the old rule which said that if he had not participated, he's eligible upon full-time enrollment, that student will stay eligib for the full year if he maintains full-time enrollment.

Significant on the grandfather clause and which is something that I personally lobbied for is that the grandfather clause ends August I, 1989. So, when that grandfather clause ends, everyone in the NJCAA will b, under the same set of rules. I felt that was significant because in some cases such as the 18 counter month rule, we're dealing with three sets of grandfathers within that rule itself. It got very confusing even within my dealings and having to go back to various books, etc., so we're going to be able to clear the grandfathers out.

Look at Section 4. The red sections in D, E and F is all you really need to look at. You should know the generalities of the rest of the eligibility rules. D, E and F are how you are going to determine an athlete's eligibility. These are the students who have never been in an NJCAA school previously. Of significance here, is the fact that if a student is not in one of our schools full-time prior to August I, 1988, he is not grandfathered. That includes the Prop 48 students that are at four-year schools this year as freshmen. They are not automatically eligible at your school next fall without meeting the new eligibility rules. A four year transfer student has to meet the rules of Section 4D, E and F. What I recommend on these rules is that the semester and quarter requirements are combined into one ladder. I think I would like to have 4D, 4E and 4F go semester and 4D, 4E and 4F go quarter. You may want to apply whichever one it is to your system and forget the wording on the other. D is for the first-term student. You will only use D for his first semester in school. There is a significant change on D from the way it used to be in term eligibility. It is a slight wording change, but it makes all the difference in the world as to how you are going to evaluate these students. What we found on term-by-term eligibility is that 70 percent of the students we lost on term-by-term eligibility were lost at the end of the first-term. We thought we were being easy on them and we were being the harshest in term-by-term eligibility on the student we needed to give the break to and that was the first-term freshman. We used to say that in conclusion of the first full-time term you had to pass 12 hours with a 1.5. The 1.5 was not the problem, but the 12 hours were the problem. They did not have an accumulation option like every other student did after the first semester.

Now the wording change is significant because it says prior to the second full-time term, a student must have passed 12 with a 1.75. Prior to the second, meaning that they can, for instance, graduate from high school two weeks ago, take a three-hour English course, come in full-time and start playing basketball, pass nine out of 12, and add the three from summer school to the nine in the fall. Or, vice versa, if he passes II out of 12 and you can get him a one-hour mini-course before the second term starts, that's fine also. I think that's significant with what we're trying to do and that's get them progress toward graduation with a minimum of 12 per term. I feel we're getting them there under that basis. It's becoming very popular for a high school senior to take a college credit course. My only requirement there is that if it's a course not offered at your school, you'll need a transcript for it. After he gets by that first term, you can forget 4D. You'll never go back to it again for that student.

In Florida we talked about doing eligibility in terms of grouping them; all first year students, all second year students and all transfer students. I think that is good, not only for me in checking the form, but it also good for you in applying the rule. If they're all there together, you can get all of your first- term students completed and then forget Rule D. 4E is where you go next and 4E is the exact same either/or rule you had from 1984 to 1986, and I stress either/or.

After the first term, you apply 4E to these students. 4E says they have to pass 12 with a 1.75 in the previous term or pass 12 for every term they were full-time in school. Under 4E, the first one, 12 in the previous term cannot have anything added to that which is not taken in the first term, so that is 12 in that previous term of full-time enrollment with a 1.75 GPA. If they don't have that, then go to the next section. If they've been in school three semesters, you take three times 12, they've got to have 36 with a 1.75.

If they've been there three, they don't have to have 36 if they have 12 in the previous, so one or the other is going to fit to those students. You can use a total accumulation of hours, transfer hours with a transcript and you can use best hours for the GPA. That was re-established by vote this year, not only by the Executive Committee and the Eligibility Committee, but by the legislative body.

The legislative body did approve the "best hoursn concept. That's also significant in how you do eligibility, although some conferences and institutions don't do it that way. I don't think anybody prints a transcript, so it's usually something you have to do if you need to pick out the best hours. People ask me in terms of filing the eligibility if you should always use the best hours. Not necessarily. Let's go back to the student who had to have 36 hours with a 1.75. If the transcript shows 48 with a 1.80, that's fine. If it shows 48 with a 1.50, then you need to go and try to find the 36 best hours and get to the 1.75. You cannot slice a course in two either, you've got to take all of it or none of it for the GPA.

You determine his/her eligibility, first of all by D or E, whichever one applies. If he's a first season athlete, you're done. Again, divide them up by first and second season athlete. If he's a second season athlete, you have to go to 4F. What you need to determine is are his best 24 semester, 36 quarter hours the best hours he has accumulated. The new students will have to meet the 2.0 prior to the second season.

FROM THE FLOOR:

There's no break for the athlete who did not come out in his first year of school, did not go out for a sport as a freshman, and comes out in his third semester, he's got to go under 4E?

WAYNE BAKER:

Yes, but he does not have to meet 4F, so he does not have to have the 2.0 because he has not played.

The second-season requirement for quarter people is if you've been in school two quarters or less, your students will have to have 28 quarter hours with a 2.0. If they've been in more than two quarters, they havE to have 36 with a 2.0. All quarters attempted beyond 15 calendar days whether full time or not, will count, excluding summer sessions. We were finding out that in some areas of the country students were not going to school all three quarters. They were going only two and they were making good academic progress. They were not enrolling at all into the third quarter, but they were not getting to the 36 level to come back and play the second season, so this break was given for the student who does not enroll at all in the third quarter.

If he enrolls in one hour in the third quarter, he's got to meet the 36 hours. If he only enrolls in two, hE can get by for the second season requirement with 28 quarter hours which is 14 per quarter, which is more thl the 12 required for other students. Theyare having to do a little better, but I don't think we'll have tha1 many students who will sit out that one quarter.

The excluding summer session was put in so that they can use summer session hours to get to that 20, if they need to. Just keep in mind that if they enroll in that third quarter at all, they will have to meet thl 36 hours.

Section 5 is very simple. It just returns the withdraw policy back to a term-by-term concept. Exact rule as printed 1984 through 1986.

In Section 6, the 18-calendar month rule has changed slightly. If you have not been in school 18 months to work, you're exempt from previous term requirements, 4D and 4E, but you have to meet 4F. If you serve those 18 months doing a church mission or a military commitment, you are exempt from the second-seasc requirement, but not the previous term requirement.

Seven B is returning to where we were from 1986 to the beginning or time for the NJCAA. For two years went with what I call the "one free game rule." I think the concept or the one free game rule was that a student could play one game in a season and it didn't count. We really thought we were helping students, bl we round out that people were using that rule or playing a student for one game, and he would play two more seasons or basketball and then transfer. They were given one year or eligibility. Actually, we were hurting them, so we're back to saying that unless you get a hardship approval out or the national office, ~ fraction or participation in a regularly-scheduled game is a season or eligibility.

FROM THE FLOOR:

What's the percentage or acceptance by the NCAA or our hardship rulings?

WAYNE BAKER:

Injury or illness hardships, 95 to 99 percent acceptance, because our rule is exactly like theirs. If it's an injury or illness that can be documented, it will apply to our rule and apply to their rule.

Transfer rule in Section 10 is a change where we've gone back to the 16 week concept in the completion of a term 12, with a 1.75, sitting out 16 calendar weeks. So essentially, it's a term. It's going to be a semester or quarter probationary period and that was a very close vote. I think there were strong feelings ( both sides for the 16 weeks and for the full-year probation.

Section 12, very simply, says that you have to file an eligibility form in the middle of the year. If your sports spans two terms, you have to have an eligibility form filed in both terms. You did that for yel and some of you continue to do it. If your conference makes you do it, you file them with me, and that is fine. Section 12 basically, reiterates that you have to file that in both terms and within the deadline dal Section 12A. We've only been dealing with those dates for two years. They are not filing deadline dates. You have only 21 days from the first day of the term to file. A specific date was determined becaul we found out that we had 24 different dates for regional championship, and we had to make the dates consistent.

Section 13, again, tells you that you have to file eligibility again.

That's a basic summation of the changes. You're basically going to be dealing with three types of students next year. The student right out of high school must meet the new rules as outlined. The second type of student is the student who has had one previous term in any of our schools. He's going to meet last year's rules. If he's a second season athlete, 24 with a 1.75, he's a first season athlete, he enrolls, he plays. The third type of student is the four-year transfer who has not been with us and you apply the rules the pamphlet. We clear them out next year and you will be dealing with only one type. I can't wait!

QUESTION FROM THE FLOOR:

I don't understand the grandfather clause rationale for not going term-by-term for the second season. Why should we ask any less of them?

WAYNE BAKER:

We have all year long. They entered under a set of rules and anytime you do this at any level, you're going to grandfather students out of there. The only thing you can do retroactively is taxes. I thought we were going to get a one term grandfather, in other words, grand father them in for the fall term and then end it. The vote didn't go that way. They moved it back to a rull-year grandfather, because they felt that those students came in under a set of rules and were conditioned under a set of rules, so they should be allowed to finish and get out under that set of rules.

We had a very time-consuming meeting to get to where we are today. We have voted to come back at the next meeting in 1989 in Charlotte, North Carolina, and make proposals with directives on the Letter of Intent such as, what the rules would be, etc. I do see support for a national Letter of Intent around the country. It's very mixed on other issues, such as telling a school how many baseball games they can play, but I do see support for the Letter of Intent to go through in 1989.

The committee we've assigned for the Letter of Intept is withjl) the Eligibility Con!mittee. If you have any questions or input, write the Eligibility Committee .

BOB BOTTGER:

You have four representatives to NACDA. Art Becker, Rick Golas from Holyoke, RtISS DjppoJd fr'ol\. St. Loujs Community College of Forest Park and myself. Our most difficult task comes at the end of January. We're put into meetings for about two days and we have to come up with what is going to be done at the annual national Convention. We are very interested in hearing from you in terms of what you want to hear, so we want not only ideas, but we want more of you involved in terms of being presenters. Please communicate with us.

Thank you very much.