The journey of a transfer athlete

While their route may be unorthodox, transfer athletes are making impacts on their respective teams and programs.

A growing trend among college students nowadays is the amount of students who begin their careers at two-year schools before moving onto a four-year university. According to a report from the National Student Clearinghouse, over 60 percent of the students who transferred from a two-year institution would go on to obtain degrees from four-year institutions.

A large number of those transfers from two year institutions are athletes hoping to take their talent to the next level of competition. Junior college is an option many athletes may consider for a number of different reasons when they are looking at playing past the high school level.

Some have financial and academic reasons for going to a junior college, and others may just want to hone their skills before playing at the National Collegiate Athletic Association level.

Head coach of the California Lutheran University women’s basketball team Lindsay Goldblatt, who previously held the same position at Moorpark College, has a wealth of experience working with transfer athletes.

“Some of the pros of recruiting transfer athletes is the fact that they already have game experience at the college level and they are used to the college lifestyle,” Goldblatt said.

That bit of added maturity can go a long way when it comes down to balancing academics and athletics.

The process of being cleared by the NCAA when transferring can be a long process especially at a Division III institution.

“At the Division III level a lot of the responsibility falls on the shoulders of the athletes because they are the ones getting themselves into school and having to find a way to pay for it,” Goldblatt said.

Senior forward Coltrane Powdrill from the Cal Lutheran men’s basketball team, who transferred from Moorpark College last year, echoed coach Goldblatt’s statements.

“It can be daunting at first because there all these forms and other things that you need to get done before you get cleared to play,” Powdrill said.

Once he was cleared, Powdrill said that the transition to Cal Lutheran was smooth sailing from there on out.

“Once I was admitted and all my compliance paperwork was filled out, getting used to CLU was pretty easy since I had all of my teammates to help me get adjusted,” Powdrill said.

As Powdrill can attest, getting the support from your teammates early can go a long way in helping build the right culture around a team.

“When you’re putting together a team it is important to make sure to create a fun atmosphere and one built on trust, otherwise there is no way you can expect your team to be successful,” Goldblatt said.

Some may think that it may be easier for junior college transfers to get acclimated to their new school as opposed to freshmen, but they often face the same struggles. They are in a completely new place with new people and at times they may struggle with their new surroundings. That is why having the support of their teammates goes a long way.

A phone interview former Cal Lutheran football player Kiyle Playter, who transferred from Pierce College, attested to the importance of having a strong support system behind him.

“After I transferred a couple of times I was able to land in a good spot for me both academically and athletically with some good people to tag along with,” Playter said.

There are a number of opportunities to show your support for these transfer athletes at various Cal Lutheran sporting events this fall. For information on fall sports schedule, you can find them all on


Alix Moise

Staff Writer

Published October 1, 2014