In order to become eligible to compete in University level sport, high school athletes must first prove their eligibility. This is done by meeting academic course and grade requirements, standardized testing requirements and proving amateurism. You do this by registering with the NCAA Eligibility Center.
When should I register with the eligibility centre?
A good time to register is just prior to when you sit your SAT exams, as you can have the college board automatically send your SAT scores to the centre (if you don’t do this you may need to pay to have the scores forwarded at a later date). You can then send transcripts for each year you have available, and then forward your grade 12 transcripts as the very last item as soon as they come through after grade 12 provincial exams.
The earlier you register, the more opportunity you have to ensure that you are within the eligibility requirements and you have time to modify courses if necessary before you head down to the states to play.
You need to be registered prior to any official visits (usually fall of grade 12) and you need to have confirmation of eligibility from them prior to any training or playing with your college team. We have seen athletes leave this process too late, and miss the beginning of their first season waiting on eligibility which is why we recommend getting started early!
Where and how do I send my school transcripts to the Eligibility Centre?
The NCAA Clearinghouse will only accept transcripts and documents (i.e. test scores) directly from your high school or the College Board. Any transcripts or test scores sent personally by you or your family will not be processed by the NCAA Eligibility center.
You can ask your school office to mail your transcripts directly to:
NCAA Eligibility Center
P.O. Box 7136, Indianapolis, IN USA
How do I make sure the Eligibility Centre gets my SAT scores?
Each time you take the SAT you have the option to send four free score reports to universities and other organizations and scholarship programs. Each organization is identified with a four digit number, to search for university codes visit this website
To send your scores directly to the NCAA Eligibility Centre use the code number 9999
If you do not send your scores directly at the time of testing, then there is an $11.25USD fee to have the scores sent from the College Board later on.
NCAA Division I athletes have a five year clock which starts at their first enrollment at ANY post secondary education, to complete FOUR years of eligibility in their sport.
What is considered a year of Eligibility?
Depending on your sport and the schedule of your team, you can be charged with a year of eligibility when your name appears on the playing roster of as few as one competition. In the case of injury early on in a season an application may be made to the NCAA to reinstate that year of eligibility. These are special situations and are evaluated on a case by case basis.
Here are some examples demonstrating how the 5 year clock works
Scenerio One: You attend classes at a post secondary institution for two years, and begin participating in your sport while you are in your third year of university – you will have only three years of eligibility.
(2 years enrolled+3 years as an athlete=5 years total eligibility)
Scenerio Two: You are redshirted for your first year, (meaning they train with the team but do not compete)and then are eligible to play four consecutive years of competition.
(1 year redshirted+4 years as an athlete=5 years total eligibility)
Scenario Three: You attend school and compete for two years and prior to your third year you have a serious injury, you may then redshirt that year, and complete your final two years of eligibility starting the next season.
(2 years playing+1 year as an injury redshirt +2 years playing=5 years total eligibility)