Recertification of Eligibility

As the fall term comes to a close, it is time to begin laying out your eligibility recertification plan for all two-term sports. In accordance with Article V Section 12.E.1, a student-athlete certified in the fall half of a two-term sport remains eligible through the end of the 20th calendar day following the end of the fall term. In accordance with Article V, Section 13.D.3, eligibility recertification must take place in order to continue the remainder of the season.  The recertification timeline and process varies depending on the school’s situation related to the academic successes of the student-athletes following the fall term. 

Recertification Scenarios – When to Recertify for the Second Term for a Two-Term Sport

All athletes remain eligible from the fall.
~ Recertify the team on or before the 15th calendar day of the spring term.

All athletes who participated during the fall are all eligible for the spring and ineligible athletes who did not participate in the fall but have become eligible for the spring term.
~ If you are adding these athletes before the 20th calendar day after the end of the fall term, the entire team must be recertified for the spring term at the same time. Those athletes completing a probationary period can be added once their terms of the probation are completed.
~ If you are adding these athletes after the 20th calendar day after the end of the fall term, then you must certify that athlete on a spring term eligibility form and recertify the remainder of the team before the 15th calendar day of the spring term.

There are ineligible athletes from the fall who cannot play during the spring term and there are no new athletes to add for the spring term.
~ Ineligible athletes may participate during the next 20 days following the end of the fall term. On the 21st day those ineligible athletes may not continue participating.
~ Recertify the remainder of the team on or before the 15th calendar day of the spring term.

There are ineligible athletes from the fall who cannot play during spring term and newly eligible athletes to be added for the spring term (2 different scenarios):
1. If you allow ineligible athletes to participate for the 20 days following the end of the fall term, you may not allow the newly eligible athletes to participate during those 20 days. If you choose this scenario, the ineligible athletes must cease participation on the 21st day and the newly eligible athletes can be added anytime on or after this 21st day on a spring eligibility form. These athletes must be certified prior to participation.
** The remaining team members must be recertified before the 15th calendar day of the spring term.
2. If you choose to exchange the ineligible athletes for the newly eligible athletes before the 20th day after the end of the fall term, the remainder of the team must be recertified for the spring term at the same time. The exchange of these athletes must occur on the same day. Ineligible and newly eligible athletes cannot be participating at the same time.

All recertifications must take place in accordance with one of the above scenarios as well as on or before the deadline date of February 6th as identified in Article V, Section 12.A.

Intersession Courses

With eligibility recertification and spring certification fast approaching the NJCAA feels it would be beneficial to place a spot light on intersession courses.  Intersession courses are classes that begin and/or end outside of the institution defined term dates.  For a class to be considered as either a fall or spring term course, the start and end dates of the class must fall within the institutions published term dates as listed in the school catalog.  This ruling applies regardless of where the institution records the credits on the transcript.

Intersession credits can only be counted towards accumulation for NJCAA eligibility purposes.  Credits may be listed on the transcript under the fall or spring term; but they can only be used toward accumulations.  The NJCAA looks at the date the class begins and ends to determine how the credit hours are counted; again it is not based on how it is listed on the transcript.

Please refer to cases 12-16 on pages 220-221 and case 13 on page 256 of the 2014-2015 NJCAA Handbook & Casebook for more information on intersession courses.


  • If a first semester basketball player only passes 10 of 12 hours during the fall term, but passes 6 hours during the winter intersession, which starts after the fall term end date and ends before the spring term begin date, would they be eligible for the spring semester? 

Yes, since the student has only attempted one (1) full time term they must meet the requirements of Article V Section 4.D.  Having accumulated more than 12 credits prior to the 15th calendar day of their second full time term and having an associated GPA of 1.75 or better they would be eligible for participation in the spring term. A freshman basketball player may take courses in the winter intercession to meet the accumulation rule but they cannot be added back to the fall term to meet previous term eligibility requirements.


  • How do you recertify the student mentioned in the above example?

In this situation when recertifying this student-athlete for the spring you would not list him as having passed 16 hours during the fall term, but instead would enter 10 hours passed in the previous full-time term and 16 hours passed for his accumulation.


  • A softball player passes 12 fall credit hours. Is it possible for her to enroll in 3 winter intersession credit hours and 9 spring credit hours to total 12 full-time hours for the spring and be eligible for participation?

No, a student-athlete must be enrolled in 12 or more hours in the term which they choose to participate at the college they choose to participate for.  The student-athlete may not combine an intersession course with courses in a term to meet the full time enrollment requirement. The intersession course does not begin and or end during the published spring schedule therefore those courses may not be used to meet enrollment requirements for the spring term.

Exhibition Games Against a Four Year Institution

An NJCAA member college would like to schedule a basketball contest against a four year institution.  Based on the four year institution’s rules, the contest must be listed as an “exhibition” on their schedule.  Is it permissible for the NJCAA member college to play this contest and may the NJCAA member college list this contest on their schedule as an official game? In accordance with Article V, Section 14, A.5 of NJCAA bylaws, both colleges must classify the competition in the same manner.  The fact the four year institution is not classifying the contest as an official game, the NJCAA member college cannot classify it as an official game either.  It would be permissible for the NJCAA member college to classify the contest as one of their allowable scrimmages.

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Volleyball Signing Date

Letter of Intent Signing Date – Volleyball

The volleyball signing date for 15-16 LOI’s is November 1st.  The Letter of Intent (LOI) program is now open and you may begin creating volleyball LOI’s for 15-16; however, the LOI cannot be signed by the student-athlete until November 1st.  The Letter of Intent program is defaulted to the 14-15 academic year so be sure to select the 15-16 academic year when creating the volleyball LOI’s.

NJCAA policy in regards to “Forfeits” and “No Contests”

Please be aware that the NJCAA adheres to the following policy in regards to ‘forfeits’ and ‘no contests’.

A forfeit can only be declared when all participating teams are present and the referee or other appropriate contest official has assumed jurisdiction in accordance with the applicable playing rules. A contest that has been completed can be declared a forfeit at a later date by appropriate governing bylaws and policies (national, region, conference). However, when a team does not appear (e.g., due to weather conditions, accidents, breakdown of vehicles, illness, or catastrophic causes) or cannot fulfill its schedule, a forfeit is not recorded (unless the rules of the sport provide for otherwise).

An institution shall not, for statistical purposes, declare a forfeit for nonfulfillment of a contest. Such instances shall be considered as “no contest” and should be marked as such in the Presto Sports NJCAA Stat System. In circumstances involving institutions from the same conference, the league office has the option to declare a forfeit win and loss for conference-standings purposes only but this does not change an institution’s overall won-lost record. In regards to what score and stats are entered in the Presto Sports NJCAA Stat System in the case of a forfeit, please refer to the guidelines on Page 6 of the NCAA Statistics’ Policies and Guide (also linked below). This page outlines for each sport what scores to enter for forfeits and at what point in the game stats become final. NCAA Guide: