It’s been understood through previous statements but the NJCAA made it official on Friday, those sophomores who lost a season in spring sports will be granted an additional year of eligibility.
The NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA agreed that communication among campuses will be important as spring 2020 student-athletes are properly informed and make decisions related to actions influenced by COVID-19. Much like the NAIA and the NCAA, the sophomores of spring seasons will not be charged an athletic year of eligibility for the 2019-20 seasons.
"We are all in this together. Everyone is working to ensure the safety and well-being of student-athletes and I am encouraged by the communication and collaboration with the NAIA and NJCAA," stated Dave Schnase, NCAA Vice President of Academic and Membership Affairs.
Spring sports are defined at the NJCAA level as baseball, softball, beach volleyball, golf, lacrosse, men's DI and DIII tennis, women's DI tennis, and outdoor track and field.
At the NJCAA Board of Regents meeting on April 3, the Board approved an amendment to the number of Letters of Intent allowed for the 2021 Spring Sports season. Second-season student-athletes enrolled at an NJCAA member college and were signed to a spring sport LOI for the Spring 2020 academic term, may receive a scholarship at the same institution for the 2020-2021 academic year and not be counted against the scholarship limit.
"I was encouraged by the open dialogue among leaders of the NJCAA, NAIA and NCAA," stated NAIA President and CEO Jim Carr. "It is evident we are all committed to working together in the best interest of student-athletes during these unprecedented times."
The NJCAA, NCAA and NAIA associations will maintain their standard academic progress requirements. Currently, all academic requirements for the NJCAA, NCAA and NAIA remain in place.The NJCAA will continue to review the COVID-19 situation and how it affects NJCAA academic progress while adjusting as deemed appropriate.
"We are very fortunate to have support from the NCAA and NAIA as we continue to evaluate the current circumstances and what is best for the entire association," stated Dr. Christopher Parker, NJCAA President and CEO. "Our student-athletes and their safety are our top priority and we are doing everything possible to provide them with necessary opportunities for success."
The NJCAA, in collaboration with the NCAA and NAIA, continues to closely monitor the ongoing COVID-19 situation and status as it impacts current member colleges and student-athletes. The NJCAA National Office, NJCAA Board of Regents and NJCAA Eligibility Committee will provide additional information once determined.