The Michigan High School Athletic Association is unfairly criticized by the uninformed for inconsistently administering the Transfer Rule.
That some students are eligible and others not after a change of school enrollment is the result of 15 stated and necessary exceptions within the Transfer Rule that can cause some students to be immediately eligible while others have to wait about one semester before they become eligible to participate for their new school. The rule, as written, with 15 pretty cut-and-dried exceptions, is consistently applied.
Some students have their ineligibility extended from one semester to two because an athletic-motivated transfer was alleged by the student’s previous school and confirmed by the MHSAA, OR because one of the listed athletic-related links was found to be present by the MHSAA without any school needing to make a written allegation of an athletic-motivated transfer. Some students have their eligibility extended further – up to four years – because they transferred as a result of undue influence (athletic recruitment).
So, if you read that one student transferred without any loss of eligibility, and another transfer lost one semester of eligibility, and another lost two semesters of eligibility, and another student lost even more, it is a function of the specific rules involved and their application to the specific facts of the different students’ situations.
It’s not bias, but the book (the Handbook that all member schools adopted); it’s not favoritism but how the rule applies to the facts of each case.