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What does it mean when they say a player has been red-shirted?

Under NCAA rules, student-athletes have five years after they enroll at a member institution to complete four seasons of eligibility. Consequently, many are held out of competition during their first year of college in order to give them additional time to mature. The origin of the term "red-shirt" is vague, but it refers to a college athlete who is being withheld from competition.

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