Tips for Boosters of Indiana State
TO OUR FRIENDS,
Indiana State University, as a member of the Missouri Valley/Gateway Football Conferences and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, is committed to maintaining a high degree of integrity in its athletic program. We ask all of you to join us in being well-informed about NCAA regulations in order to ensure that we meet this challenge.
The NCAA has developed explicit guidelines for what athletics representatives can and cannot do relative to our student-athletes. The Department of Athletics has compiled this information to answer questions you may have regarding the recruitment of prospective student-athletes and contact with currently enrolled student-athletes.
By assisting the University in rules compliance, you are not only reaffirming the integrity of our program, but also protecting the athletics eligibility of our students.
Please take the time to read the information which follows. There are always questions that will arise as a result of specific situations. If you feel unclear about how to operate within NCAA guidelines, feel free to contact the Department of Athletics.
NCAA Rule: Who is governed by rules?
You are considered a representative of Indiana State University athletic interests if you are or have ever been a member of any group which supports or promotes the athletic program, if you have made financial donations to the athletic program, or if you have helped in any way to recruit student-athletes.
This means that any contact you have with prospective student-athletes, and anything you provide for prospective or current student-athletes is subject to NCAA rules and can affect the eligibility of Indiana State University's individual student-athletes and teams to compete in the Missouri Valley Conference competition.
NCAA Rule: Who is a "Prospect"?
A "prospective student-athlete" or "prospect" is any student who has started classes for the ninth grade.
This means that contact with any student who has started classes for the ninth grade is subject to NCAA rules.
Agreement to provide benefit or privilege (bylaw 184.108.40.206)
Any agreement between an institution (or any organization that promotes, assists or augments in any wah the athletics interests of the member institution, and any individual who, for any consideration, is or may be entitled under the terms of the agreement to any benefit or privilege relating to the institution's athletics program, shall contain a specific clause providing that any such benefit or privilege may be withheld if the individual has engaged in conduct that is determined to be a violation of NCAA legislation. The clause shall provide for the withholding of the benefit or privilege from a party to the agreement and any other person who may be entitled to a benefit or privilege under the terms of the agreement.
What are some examples of "extra benefits" to enrolled student-athletes that are prohibited by the NCAA?
Arranging, providing or co-signing a loan;
Providing a meal outside your own home;
Providing clothing or transportation;
Providing a ticket to any athletics, institutional or community event;
Providing the parents, family, or friends of a student-athlete with free admission to a team banquet;
Giving any type of gift;
Arranging or providing any special discount, credit or special payment arrangements on any purchase or service.
Are athletics representatives allowed to help finance a student-athlete's education?
No. Under Missouri Valley Conference, Gateway Football Conference and NCAA rules, receipt by a student-athlete of any type of financial assistance from any non-family or non-institutional source constitutes a rules violation that renders the student-athlete ineligible.
May a booster or booster group finance a season-ending banquet or team meal? May it purchase awards for the team?
Provided all funds are expended through the athletics department, it is permissible for a booster or booster group to be the source of funds for a meal, banquet, and awards. Since the NCAA established a value limit on awards received by student-athletes, it is important to have any awards approved by the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.
May I contact high school coaches or guidance counselors directly regarding a prospective student-athlete?
Because such contact would involve specific athletic recruiting, not general institutional recruiting, a representative would be prohibited from such contact.
May I attend a high school game? May I speak with a prospect's parents prior to or during a game?
It is permissible for you to attend a high school game. However, since NCAA rules equate contact with a prospect's parents to contact with a prospect, it is not permissible to speak with parents for the purposes of recruiting the prospect.
May I accompany the coach during his or her 'home' visit with the prospect?
No. This would constitute your direct involvement in the athletic recruitment of the prospect and would not be permissible.
What if I am a friend of the family, a relative, or a neighbor of the prospect?
The rule is not intended to preclude your 'normal' contact with family friends, relatives, or neighbors. However, any contact for the purpose of recruiting them to your institution would not be permitted.
May I drive a prospect to an Alumni Relations Office reception in my local area"
No, unless such arrangements are made for all students in attendance. Otherwise, providing such transportation would be considered an 'extra-benefit' and would render the prospect ineligible to play if he/she enrolled at Indiana State University.
May I invite a number of prospective student-athletes to my home to talk about Indiana State University?
Except as part of an Alumni Relations Office reception or gathering, which would include athletes and non-athletes, it would not be permissible.
May I buy a meal in a restaurant for a prospect, an enrolled student-athlete or an entire team?
No. Donations for such purposes may be made through the Scholarship Fund.
May I invite a student-athlete, on an occasional basis, into my home for a meal?
Yes. However, the meal must be in your own home and can only be on an occasional basis. (Occasional basis is defined to be no more than once per semester).
May I meet with prospects while they are on campus? May I buy them dinner during their official visit? May I drive them to campus?
No. On-campus contact with prospects is not permitted.
May I assist a prospect or an enrolled student-athlete with employment?
Yes, provided the following conditions are met: Students are paid only for work actually performed and they are paid at a rate commensurate with the going rate in that locality for similar services. You are not permitted to assist a prospect until after he or she has accepted admission to Indiana State University. Specific regulations apply for academic year employment. Please contact the Compliance Office for further details.
How You May Help
* Join a Sports Specific Booster Club/Sycamore Scholarship Fund.
These groups provide support for teams through funding for special team trips, recruiting, and hosting receptions for teams at home and away contests. This is the best way to help your team of choice, and you'll be kept up to date on their progress throughout the year.
* Identify Outstanding Student-Athletes.
If you know of outstanding student-athletes in your area, send information such as newspaper clippings to the coach, or give the coach a call, and let them take it from there. (Remember, you must not contact prospects directly, or contact high school coaches or guidance counselors to get information on prospects, but there is no rule against attending their contests).
* Offer Assistance to the Coaching Staff.
You may provide lodging, meals, and transportation to ISU coaches when they come to your community to contact and evaluate prospects.
* Provide Jobs and Internships.
If you know of positions in your business or community which might be filled by a student-athlete, then contact the athletics director with names of those who might be qualified. (Remember that the pay for these jobs must be at the going rate for that position).
For further information on NCAA rules, especially those relating to contact between alumni and student-athletes or prospective student- athletes, please contact:
Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance
Indiana State University
Terre Haute, IN 47809