After the SEC's spring meetings, the league has decided to change its graduate transfer policy and graduate transfers are now eligible to transfer within the conference and play immediately without having to sit out for a season.
Previously, graduate transfers from across the nation would be eligible right away, but in-conference transfers would need to sit out for a season.
After the rule change, Florida wide receiver Van Jefferson, who transferred from Ole Miss, will be eligible to play for the Gators next season.
Former Alabama offensive lineman Brandon Kennedy’s transfer case is also affected by Friday’s development. Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban explained earlier this week that he was merely following the league's standing rule in blocking Kennedy from pursuing a graduate transfer to Tennessee or Auburn. Other coaches have elected not to enforce the rule when players want to leave, but the approach had not been uniform from program to program.
“If we agree in the SEC in these meetings that we’re going to have free agency in our league and everybody can go wherever they want to go when they graduate and that’s what’s best for the game, then I think that’s what we should do,” Saban said. “Then Brandon Kennedy can go wherever he wants to go. But if we don’t do that, why is it on me?”
The SEC also strengthened its misconduct policy to include high school recruits, meaning schools can no longer accept recruits who have been convicted of a serious misconduct felony such as sexual assault and domestic violence.