What is the NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA Eligibility Center. How to apply and be certified.
Being a student athlete, comes with responsibilities. There are requirements that need to be fulfilled to be part of the lucky ones that play college sports.
We will like to guide in this post about the procedures to be certefied and explain the steps to do so.
First we need to understand that there are three atletic associations you can be recruited, NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA. While they all are aiming for the same student-athletes, their requirements are different and can provide options for applicants.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is the most known of this organizations, think of the big name schools you can find on your TV on ESPN, Alabama, Oklahoma, Miami but you can also find NCAA D2 and D3 that differ in the amount of sports offered, finances and types of scholarship they can provide as stated in the following slide:
The first step is to go to the NCAA Eligibility Center website and start an application. This can be done in two ways:
- Certification Account: You need to be certified by the NCAA Eligibility Center to compete at an NCAA Division I or II school. You also need to be registered with a Certification Account before you can make official visits or sign a National Letter of Intent in Division I or II.
- Profile Page: If you plan to compete at a Division III school or are currently unsure in which division you want to compete, create a Profile Page. If at any time you wish to pursue a Division I or II path, you will be able to transition to a Certification Account.
The following timeline aids students with steps to do according to the grade they are in.
NOTE: Internationals students need to send transcripts via regular mail. Last four year of schooling needs to be sent in original language in addition to high school diploma (or prooff of graduation) inside a sealed envelope to prevent tampering with the documents. In addition, international students are required to present a line by line translation of all documents sent to NCAA. This needs to be sent to the following address.
NCAA Eligibility Center
1802 Alonzo Watford Sr. Drive
Indianapolis, IN 46202
After finishing the process of eligibility by the NCAA, students will receive the following types of Certifications:
QUALIFIER: May receive athletics aid (scholarship), practice and compete in the first year of full-time enrollment at the Division I
college or university. The requirements are:
- 16 core courses (10 before senior year)
- Minimum 2.3 GPA in core courses
- Meet sliding scale for SAT or ACT Test results: NCAA Sliding Scale
- Graduate from High School
ACADEMIC REDSHIRT: May receive athletics aid (scholarship) in the first year of full-time enrollment and may practice in the first regular
academic term (semester or quarter) but may not compete in the first year of enrollment. The student-athlete must
successfully complete nine semester hours or eight quarter hours in the initial term at his/her college or university to
continue to practice in the next term.
NON - QUALIFIER: Cannot receive athletic aid (scholarship), practice or compete in the first year of full-time enrollment.
LINK - NCAA Eligibility Guide
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) was founded in 1937. Each year more than 65,000 student-athletes have the opportunity to play college sports, earn over $600 million in scholarships and compete for a chance to participate in 25 national championships. You can find NAIA schools that offer your
sport at PlayNAIA org.
If you graduate from a U.S. high school this spring and enroll in college this coming fall, the requirements are simple. An entering freshman must:
- Be a graduate of an accredited high school.
- Meet two of the three following requirements. If as an entering freshman you do not meet at least two of the three standards, you cannot participate in athletics for the first full year of attendance (2 semesters, 3 quarters, or equivalent).
You can register with the NAIA Eligibility Center at PlayNAIA.org.
NOTE: Internationals students need to send transcripts via regular mail. Last four year of schooling needs to be sent in original language in addition to high school diploma (or prooff of graduation) inside a sealed envelope to prevent tampering with the documents. In addition, international students are required to present a line by line translation of all documents sent to NAIA. This needs to be sent to the following address.
NAIA Eligibility Center – Transcripts
1200 Grand Blvd.
Kansas City, MO 64106 U.S.A.
LINK - NAIA Eligibility Guide
The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) is an association formed of more than 500 Two-Year Colleges the main requirement eligibility wise, is having a proof of high school graduation. For more information, it can be found in the NJCAA Eligibility Guide.
It is important to plan and keep in mind the requirements, most of mistakes happen due to the lack of information of doing lot of the work in last instances. Any questions about this guide or expecificly about recruitng and eligibility can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org