NJSIAA Execs Pass Final Vote for 30-Day Sit Out Transfer Rule


ROBBINSVILLE, NJ – A monumental change to New Jersey’s often discussed high school student-athlete transfer will get the makeover state officials have been working on for years.

By virtue of a 25-9-2 vote from the NJSIAA Executive Committee, the state’s governing body for high school athletics, a 30-day mandatory sit-out period will go into effect for just about all transfers beginning on July 1, 2017.

The two-year discovery process spearheaded by NJSIAA’s project manager Michael Zapicchi removed the longstanding “bona fide change of address” clause in the current policy and will institute a required 30-day sit-out period for each sport the student-athlete participated in at their previous school.

Sign Up for E-News

“I thought that this was something that people could really support,” NJSIAA Executive Director Steve Timko said. “I know there are issues surrounding it, but overall this is the best proposal. I think it was something that needed to be passed.

According to the new rule, students who transfer before the official start of the regular season, as determined by the NJSIAA each year, will still be allowed to take part in all team/program activities, including practices and scrimmages. They will not be permitted to play in regular season games during their 30 day sit-out period.

If the student-athlete transfers to a school following the official regular season start date, they will sit out 30 days and also be ineligible for the state tournament.

There are three exceptions to the new policy that will allow immediate game participation: (1) military-related change of residence, (2) court-ordered change of residence and (3) a documented case involved the Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying statute.

Zapicchi said the basis this new rule is to help students make informed academic decisions, rather than on the basis of potential athletic rewards.

“In all of this, the part of our deliberations here that are different than I think any other discussion of the transfer rule, whether at this body or by the member schools in general, is we have to look at, as an organization, do we want to discourage student-athletes from jeopardizing their academic process for an athletic prize that less and less of them get to win,” Zappichi said.

New Jersey Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly (District 35, Democrat) attended Wednesday’s meeting to address his concerns about the proposed rule change.

“After talking to maybe 20 coaches and administrators that are friends of mine, each of them had various concerns about the transfer rule,” Wimberly said. “The one thing that was common amongst all of us was, we knew something had to be done, but we thought what was done was pretty extreme.”

Member schools still have the opportunity to “vote down” the new rule by a majority vote after the rule change has been in effect for six months.

According to Zapicchi, on January 1, 2018, six months after the rule goes into effect, the NJSIAA will send letters to each school’s principal seeking their input on the rule. If a majority of the member schools send the NJSIAA their yes or no opinion, whatever the majority of the votes is will determine the future of the rule. However, if less than half of the schools reply to the letter, the rule will remain regardless of the outcome of responses.

Timko also noted that the rule will go to Acting Commissioner of Education Kimberley Harrington for approval, but he had not spoken to her yet.

Harrington has previous history related to the NJSIAA’s current transfer rule. She vetoed the governing body’s removal of Wayne Hills from the 2016 football state tournament due to the lack of an appeals process. 


TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Information on Parking and Traffic for Saturday's 'March for Our Lives' Event

March 24, 2018

UNION, NJ – It is anticipated that several hundred people or more will participate in the Union County March for Our Lives event on Saturday morning in Union.

Students, teachers, parents, clergy and public officials from all over Union County will be walking from Burnet Middle School to Town Hall in an anti-gun violence march.

Parking will be available in the following ...

Jewish Film Festival of Central NJ

March 23, 2018

Join us for Five Engaging Films at the Spring Jewish Film Festival

The Jewish Film Festival of Central NJ is pleased to present five films this spring at the Rialto NewVision Theater, 250 East Broad Street in Westfield.  Screenings begin April 10 and run through May 7. All films start at 7:30 p.m.

We begin the spring series with The Testament on Tuesday, April 10. In The Testament, an ...

Cranford Police Blotter: DWI Arrest & More

March 20, 2018

The information provided does not represent the total scope of police activity.  Individuals charged as a result of police investigations are merely an accusation.  All defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.  


1.  03/14/2018 11:32 a.m. 

North Avenue East at Elizabeth Avenue

Arrested:  Shannen Garbiras, 19, Roselle ...

Upcoming Events

Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM

Burent Middle School , Union

Union County Wide - March for Our Lives

Government Law & Justice

Sun, March 25, 8:00 AM

Trinity Episcopal Church,, Cranford

Palm/Passion Sunday Mass at Trinity Cranford – ...

Religions And Spirituality

Sun, March 25, 9:30 AM

Calvary Lutheran Church, Cranford

Palm Sunday Festival Worship

Religions And Spirituality

'Trying' explores age, youth and points of history in poignant production

‘Trying’ explores youth, age and points of history in poignant production

By Liz Keill

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The George Street Playhouse presents an engrossing, two-character play based on the real life of Francis Biddle, former Attorney General.

Biddle, a Harvard educated lawyer, served under Franklin Roosevelt and later Harry Truman during the Nuremberg Tribunal. His ...