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  • Writer's pictureeliteusacademy

What is...'Eligibility'?

As an Athlete at College or University in the US you are required to be eligible to compete in organised Collegiate competitions, so this week we are discussing eligibility and why it's so important.

So, what is Eligibility?

Eligibility is a requirement by Athletic organisations, that regulate and organise US College sports, in order to compete. There are 3 Athletic associations that you can be recruited for; NCAA, NAIA & NJCAA. Each of these associations have their own variation on the eligibility process and requirements, some being more lenient than others, which provides prospective students with options to decide which is best for them.

You receive an eligible status by meeting certain criteria; these include age, GPA and other personal details. As a Student Athlete you can receive a maximum of 4 years of eligibility, which allows you to compete for 4 seasons in your chosen Sport, however this does not mean that you are guaranteed to receive a full 4 years when you apply as this depends on the information provided.

In order to become eligible you must go through a formal process, similar to the Visa process, where you are required to provide information about yourself and your playing experiences. Some of the main issues that can arise when applying for eligibility include playing history and age; if you have ever been a Professional athlete and received financial benefits, or if you are over the age of 19 and have competed in organised competition, you may have your years of eligibility reduced.

Eligibility doesn't end after your application, once you have received an eligible status there are a number of requirements in order to retain your eligible status, these include maintaining a minimum GPA and legal Visa status. So it is also important to be aware of the expectations as a College Athlete in order to maintain eligibility and keep playing the sport you love!

The eligibility process can be challenging to navigate, especially in situations where years of eligibility could be removed, so it is vital that you take care when applying. Eligibility assistance is just one of the areas we assist our player's with when helping them on their College Scholarship journey.

If you would like to know more about how we help players through the Soccer Scholarship process, why not get in touch with us here to see how we can help you make your US College Soccer dream a reality!

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