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NJCAA Eligibility Rules: Everything You Need to Know About

For many athletes, the NJCAA is a great pathway to success both athletically and academically. In this blog, you will learn everything you need to know about the NJCAA eligibility rules, transfer rules, and amateur status.

Written by

Lars Blenckers

In this blog post, I wrote about the pathway from NJCAA to NCAA and why many athletes pick this route. The main reason athletes and families choose the NJCAA route first is because the NJCAA eligibility rules are more relaxed compared to the NCAA.

In this article, I will go over the NJCAA eligibility rules so you know exactly what requirements you must meet to be able to play and compete in the NJCAA.

NJCAA Eligibility Rules for Incoming Freshmen

For those aspiring to join the NCJAA as freshmen, you must meet the following:

  1. High School Graduation: A student-athlete must have a high school diploma, general education diploma (GED), or a state-approved high school equivalency test.
  2. Amateur Status: The athlete must remain an amateur after turning 19 or enrolling as a full-time college student.
  3. International Students: They must provide translated high school transcripts (covering years nine and above) recognized by the governing body as proof of graduation.

NJCAA Eligibility Rules for Transfer Students

Transfer students face additional requirements:

  • Compliance with NJCAA Rules: All transfer students must adhere to NJCAA eligibility rules.
  • Transcripts and Previous Participation: Official college transcripts and confirmation of previous seasons from past institutions are mandatory.
  • NJCAA Transfer Waiver: A fully executed waiver is necessary if the student-athlete was previously signed to an LOI (Letter of Intent).
  • Institutional Determination: Eligibility is assessed at the institutional level, considering all previous college work.
njcaa eligibility rules

Amateur Status

Being an amateur is central to NJCAA eligibility:

  • Definition: An amateur is someone who has not participated in professional or semi-professional leagues or received remuneration beyond necessary expenses related to athletic skills.
  • Verification: Ensure your amateur status by consulting the NJCAA Rules of Eligibility or an NJCAA athletic director.

Additional Insights into NJCAA

The NJCAA's mission goes beyond just setting eligibility requirements. Here's more about what they do:

  • Promoting Education: The NJCAA emphasizes the importance of education alongside sports, encouraging student-athletes to excel in academics.
  • Diverse Opportunities: With over 30 different sports, the NJCAA offers a wide range of opportunities for student-athletes to pursue their passions.
  • Emphasizing Fair Play: The NJCAA's rules are designed to ensure a level playing field, promoting integrity and fairness in college sports.
Read more about the NJCAA
njcaa eligibility requirements


There are strict NJCAA eligibility rules for student-athletes to ensure amateur status and fair competition. Understanding these rules is essential for anyone aspiring to participate in college sports. Each potential student-athlete must discuss their athletic eligibility with the athletic personnel at the NJCAA college where they have chosen to attend.

Support with +31 Sports

Understanding the NJCAA eligibility rules, guidelines, and regulations can be overwhelming.

However, as experts at +31 Sports, we have a deep understanding of the rules. If you have any questions regarding eligibility or just want to learn more, don't hesitate to reach out to us. We're here to guide you through the process, ensuring that you're well-prepared for your college sports journey.

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