|Up to and including this year, transfers between NCAA Division I schools have played a significant part of the college baseball landscape. Unlike their brethren in football and basketball, baseball players have been allowed to transfer schools and not have to sit out a year if they were given a release from their scholarship from the school they were leaving. |
That has all changed with new rules governing transfers. The powers that be in the NCAA felt that the APR (Academic Progress Rate) for baseball in general, and many schools in particular, was being adversely affected by frequent transfers, as schools over-recruited players and players themselves moved around between seasons to find the best fit for their talents.
Part of the solution was simply to limit the number of players a school could divide its 11.7 scholarship allotment between. Where some schools would divide their scholarships up into 40 or more slices/players, they will be limited to 35 in 2009 and only 27 a year later. The rest of the solution was simply to adopt the strict football/basketball transfer rules and make athletes sit out a year if they transferred.
A number of the top college players in the 2008 draft took advantage of the liberal transfer rule earlier in their college careers without being forced to sit out a season, making one wonder how much different their baseball career paths might have been under the new rules.
Twenty college players that PG Crosschecker has listed among its Group I (Rounds 1-3) and Group II (Rounds 4-10) prospects for this year’s draft have transferred from one Division I school to another, and only one, UC Irvine righthander Bryce Stowell, was forced to sit out a year while in the transfer process. Long Beach State (Brett Lorin, Dave Roberts), North Carolina State (Clayton Shunick, Eric Sogard) and Oklahoma State (Luis Flores, Matt Hague) each have two such players.
In the order that we project they’ll be drafted in June, here’s the 10 most noteworthy D-I transfers: