What You Need to Know to Participate in Intercollegiate Athletics at a California Community College
Are California Community College Athletics for me?
You are allowed a maximum of four (4) seasons of intercollegiate athletic competition in a given sport. Your first two (2) seasons can be at a community college.
Can I compete at any California community college?
Yes, as long as you meet state and college academic and athletic rules, you may compete in intercollegiate athletics.
You are eligible as a first-year participant if you meet the following guidelines:
- You are an amateur athlete in the sport in which you want to participate.
- You have not competed in intercollegiate athletics at any college or university.
- You are enrolled in and actively attending California community college classes for a minimum of 12 units of which 9 count toward the associate degree, remediation, transfer and/or certification during your season of participation.
To be eligible to participate in a second-year of the same sport at the same college, you must meet the following guidelines:
- You must complete 24 semester/36 quarter units between seasons of sport, of which 18 semester/27 quarter units count toward the associate degree, remediation, transfer and/or certification units.
- Beginning with your first season of participation in intercollegiate athletics, your cumulative GPA must be 2.0 or above.
- You are enrolled in and actively attending a minimum of 12 units of which 9 are units toward the associate degree, remediation, transfer and/or certification during your season of participation.
If you are transferring to the community college after participating in intercollegiate athletics at another community college or university, you will need to check with your athletic director to determine additional eligibility rules.
Can I be recruited by any California community college coach?
No. Coaches may only recruit in their recruiting area. California is divided into community college districts. A district is the local community which the community college serves. A coach may recruit athletes from the college’s district and those districts that share a common boundary or are immediately next door. The recruiting area is the college’s district high schools and the contiguous district’s high schools.
Can all California community college coaches meet with me and my family in person?
No. A coach cannot travel outside his or her recruiting area to meet with you, your family, or team.
If you do not live within the borders of the recruiting area and you wish to meet with a representative of the out-of-area college, then you must go to that area to meet with the coach in person. You are permitted to contact the coach by phone, mail or internet.
Can I receive an athletic scholarships at a California community college?
No. Scholarships and financial inducements for athletic participation are not permitted within the rules governing California community colleges. This includes but is not limited to:
- Cash or personal loans
- Special discounts or payment arrangements on loans
- Free use of an automobile
- A gift of money or other tangible items (clothes, jewelry, books, gas, food, etc.)
- Free or reduced costs for housing arrangements
- Telephone privileges
When do I register for classes? How do I know what classes to take?
The coach will give you information regarding important dates for registration and financial aid. These dates are important to follow. Not completing financial aid information by the priority date could delay your ability to receive funding if you qualify. Delaying your registration after the initial registration period could keep you from taking the courses that you need to complete your academic goals.
Your coach will help you meet with a counselor at the college to develop your Student Educational Plan. This plan will help you to clarify your education goals and select the courses you need to take. It is from this plan that you choose the classes you take each semester.
Are there other things I should ask the coach about?
College brings many changes. Coaches can assist you providing information and placing you in touch with offices that can help you make a smooth transition. This may include:
- Referring you to a counseling contact with knowledge of COA, NCAA and NAIA athletic eligibility rules
- Referring you to a counselor for academic, career, and personal counseling
- Referring you to a job placement and resource center
Copied from the brochure of the Commission on Athletics (COA)