New Initial-Eligibility and Two-Year Transfer Academic Standards

July 17, 2012

This educational column is designed to assist NCAA Division I institutions that are preparing in-person presentations for prospective student-athletes at high schools, two-year institutions and other group forums regarding recently adopted initial-eligibility and two-year transfer academic standards.

Institutions are reminded that athletics department staff members who are not involved in coaching activities or do not have sport specific responsibilities (e.g., athletics director, compliance coordinator, athletics counselor) may speak to an outside group that includes prospective student-athletes without such activity resulting in a recruiting violation, even during a dead period, provided:

  •    The individuals do not make a recruiting presentation;
  •    There is no direct contact with the prospective student-athletes; and
  •    The outside group initiates the invitation to speak.

Further, an institution may publicize the availability of an athletics department staff member to provide pertinent information through an in-person format. The publicity does not, in and of itself make the presentation impermissible, provided the outside group initiates the specific request for the presentation.

For example, the following scenario would be permissible:

  • An institution’s athletic director makes a high school aware of the availability of the institution’s compliance staff to present on the new initial-eligibility standards;
  • The high school decides to take advantage of the opportunity and works with the institution regarding the specific date and time for the presentation;
  • Institutional compliance staff provides a presentation regarding the new eligibility standards only, which may include taking specific questions from any member of the audience regarding the standards, but may not include contact with prospective student-athletes or their relatives before or after the presentation.

[References: NCAA Division I Bylaws (dead period) and 13.1.8 (banquets, meetings and NCAA promotional activities); and staff interpretations (04/28/89, Item No. d) and (02/03/93, Item No. a)]

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