11 Athletes should meet with their counselor during their freshman year to discuss NCAA requirements and to make sure they are taking the right courses. Athletes should take the ACT and/or SAT in the spring of their junior year. To initiate the eligibility process, athletes need to register with the NCAA Eligibility Center. This should be done at the beginning of an athlete’s junior year. www.eligibilitycenter.org Requirements for Athletes Playing a sport in college takes a tremendous amount of talent, dedication, and commit- ment.Collegeathletesmustalsomeetspecific eligibility requirements. Below are basic eligibility guidelines for the NCAA, NAIA, and NJCAA. For additional information, visit their websites. NCAA – Division I and II colleges can offer athletic scholarships. Division III colleges (mostly smaller, private colleges) cannot. Before athletes can play a sport or receive a scholarship at a Division I or Division II college, they must meetNCAA’sacademicrequirements.DivisionIIIathletesdonotneedtomeet NCAA academic requirements. Athletes who want to compete at a Division I or Division II college must have a minimum GPA in a specified number of core courses. They must also have the required ACT or SAT score. ACT/SAT test score requirements for Division I eligibility are based on a sliding scale. The higher the core GPA, the lower the testscorerequired.Astudentwitha2.5coreGPA,forexample,willberequired to have a higher test score than a student with a 3.0 core GPA. NAIA – NAIA colleges can award full or partial scholarships. To play a sport or receive an athletic scholarship, an athlete must meet two of the following three NAIA requirements: 1) have the required minimum ACT or SAT score; 2) have an overall 2.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale; 3) graduate in the top half of his/her class. www.playnaia.org NJCAA – Division I and II junior and community colleges can offer athletic scholarships. There are no academic eligibility requirements for high school graduates entering junior and community colleges. www.njcaa.org