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The number of graduate transfer football players has grown 12x since 2011, NCAA research shows

If you feel like you've been hearing the phrase "graduate transfers" more now than you ever have before, you're not wrong.

According to NCAA research they shared today, Division I student-athletes are earning their undergrad degrees in record numbers and doing it more quickly than ever before because of factors like high school opportunities for dual enrollment or advanced placement courses, increased financial aid for classes taken in the summer, and a host of other improvements that have been made. The door for graduate transfers is opening more often now than ever because they're completing their undergrad degree requirements before their athletic eligibility runs out, so those that have earned their bachelor's degree are eligible to participate as a graduate transfer student at another Division I school if they choose...and that's more popular than ever right now.

Below is the graph highlighting the spike from the NCAA:


Dating back to 2011 the number of graduate transfers in college football has grown 12 times! In just the past year it has nearly doubled from 117 in 2017 to 211 in 2018(which equals 1% of the college football playing population), and back in 2011 there were just 17 graduate transfers across all of college football.

In terms of percentage of a whole, men's basketball has the highest percentage of graduate transfers that go on to play elsewhere at 2.3%

Head here to read more on the study, including the trend in women's grad transfers.