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Fall athletes to receive an extra year of NCAA eligibility after seasons postponed

UCLA football rising redshirt senior running back Demetric Felton is one of the fall sport student-athletes who will be granted an extra year of athletic eligibility. (Axel Lopez/Daily Bruin senior staff)

By Michael Waldman

Aug. 21, 2020 2:09 p.m.

The NCAA announced Friday that another year of athletic eligibility will be given to fall sport student-athletes.

After the cancellation of the Pac-12 and Big Ten fall sports seasons earlier this month, the Division 1 Board of Directors implemented a blanket COVID-19 waiver, which not only gave fall athletes another year of eligibility but protected all players from losing scholarships should they opt out of the season.

Individual schools are also prohibited from forcing a student-athlete to waive their legal protections relating to COVID-19 exposure to participate in the season, as the board aims to move fall sports championships to the spring.

Furthermore, the board decided that the financial aid for student-athletes redeeming an extra year will not count toward program aid limits in 2021-2022.

Student-athletes can also pursue part-time enrollment in the fall without having their degree progresses altered in a manner impacting their playing eligibility.

Schools are required by the board’s decision to review insurance coverage of student-athletes and inform student-athletes about their university’s adherence to the NCAA’s Resocialization of College Sport guidelines.

Rising senior UCLA athletes in women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer, cross country, men’s and women’s golf and football will now have an extra year of eligibility and a full year to fulfill said eligibility.

The unanimous Aug. 11 vote by Pac-12 presidents and chancellors to postpone the fall 2020 seasons halted UCLA’s Return to Training plan, which saw regionally based fall Olympic sport student-athletes and football student-athletes return to campus June 22.

The decision came after eight UCLA football student-athletes were reported to have tested positive for COVID-19   along with head coach Chip Kelly in March during the Return to Training program, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

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Michael Waldman | Assistant Sports editor
Waldman is currently an assistant Sports editor on the men's soccer, men's volleyball, women's volleyball, beach volleyball and track and field beats. He was previously a reporter on the women's basketball and beach volleyball beats.
Waldman is currently an assistant Sports editor on the men's soccer, men's volleyball, women's volleyball, beach volleyball and track and field beats. He was previously a reporter on the women's basketball and beach volleyball beats.
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