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Rubio Requests NCAA Grant Hardship Waiver to Floridian After Denial

Aug 9, 2023 | Press Releases

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) denied a hardship waiver by Darrell Jackson, Jr., a Floridian and defensive linebacker at Florida State University, who moved home due to his mother’s health issues. The denial will require Darrell to sit out during the 2023 season.

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a letter to NCAA President Charlie Baker in response and requested his hardship be granted a second look.

  • “Strong communities are built from strong families. I commend Darrell for his decision to put family first and move home. The NCAA’s decision to deny Darrell’s waiver request sends a wrong message to our young adults when confronted with family health.”

The full text of the letter is below. 

Dear President Baker: 

I write with disappointment in the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) decision to punish a young athlete who is putting his family first. Darrell Jackson, Jr., a recent transfer to Florida State University, sought a hardship waiver to be near his ailing mother, and was denied.

A promising young athlete, Darrell grew up not far from Tallahassee. He first attended the University of Maryland before transferring to the University of Miami last season. While at Miami, Darrell excelled, playing in all 12 games. Unfortunately, Darrell is experiencing every family’s worst nightmare. A sick parent is tough on grown children. To have to go through this while still in college is especially difficult. Strong communities are built from strong families. I commend Darrell for his decision to put family first and move home. 

The NCAA’s decision to deny Darrell’s waiver request sends a wrong message to our young adults when confronted with family health. Darrell’s hardship application deserves a second look. If this is not what hardship waivers are for, then what is?

I look forward to your response. 

Sincerely,