Emory & Henry has a long tradition of excellence in athletics and academics and the current staff strives to honor that tradition by building and maintaining winning athletic teams. Winning brings satisfaction and pride to the current student-athletes, and brings honor to the institution and all its alumni. We all want to win. But we want to do so in accordance with the policies set forth by the NCAA. The NCAA holds the institution responsible for the control and conduct of the athletics program. Therefore, the institution is also held responsible for the conduct of all its staff, student-athletes, alumni and supporters.
This document provides an overview of NCAA Division III rules that are of particular note. Violations could affect the eligibility of a current or prospective student-athlete, or could result in sanctions against the institution. This is only a brief overview of some of the NCAA rules. For more detailed information, please contact Director of Athletics Myra Sims at (276) 944-6236 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Representative of Athletics Interests”
A “representative of Emory & Henry’s athletics interest” is an individual who is known (or who should have been known) by a member of the institution’s executive or athletics administration to:
a) Have participated in or be a member of an agency or organization promoting the institution’s intercollegiate athletics program,
b) Have made financial contributions to the athletics department or to an athletics department booster organization of the institution,
c) Be assisting or to have been requested (by the athletics department staff) to assist in the recruitment of prospects,
d) Be assisting or to have assisted in providing benefits to enrolled student-athletes or their families, or
e) Have been involved otherwise in promoting the institution’s athletics program.
Once an individual is identified as such a representative, the person retains that identity indefinitely. Someone who meets the standard to become a “representative of athletics interests” for Emory & Henry must adhere to the same NCAA policies that are set forth for coaches and staff members. The institution, the individual student-athlete or prospective student-athlete can be held responsible for any violations committed by the representative.
A prospective student-athlete (prospect) is a student who has started classes in the ninth grade. In addition, a student who has not started classes for ninth grade becomes a prospective student-athlete if the institution provides such an individual (or the individual’s relatives or friends) any financial assistance or other benefits that the institution does not provide to prospective students generally. A student remains a prospect until the prospect enrolls in a full-time program of studies and attends classes (excluding summer) or participates in official team practice before classes begin.
An extra benefit is any special arrangement by a representative to provide a service to a student-athlete that is not expressly authorized by NCAA legislation. An extra benefit would include the provision of transportation, meals, clothing, entertainment, preferential loan terms, housing and other benefits offered to student-athletes not available to the general student population. Student-athletes and prospective student-athletes must receive benefits or services in the same process and manner as other students at the institution.
In order to maintain amateur status, student-athletes may not receive any preferential treatment, services or benefits based on their athletic ability. There are numerous policies in place related to student-athletes receiving prize money based on athletics performance; use of agents; student-athletes participating in promotional activities for the institution, a charity or a commercial entity; employment of student-athletes in camps or clinics; and sponsorship arrangements that involve any professional sports organization.
In Division III, coaches, athletics staff members and representatives of an institution’s athletics interests may make in-person, on- or off-campus contact with a prospect. However, such OFF-CAMPUS contact shall not occur until the conclusion of the prospect’s sophomore year of high school.
An athletics staff member or other representative of athletics interest shall not make contact in any manner with the student-athlete of another NCAA or NAIA four-year institution to encourage or discuss a transfer without first obtaining written permission to do so, regardless of who makes initial contact. There are certain circumstances in which a student-athlete who transfers may be required to complete a year-in-residence at the new institution before he/she is eligible to participate in athletics.
An institution may permit staff members, student-athletes or representatives of athletics to telephone a prospect at the institution’s expense at any time, provided the call is only for the purpose of recruitment and is with full knowledge of the athletics department.
220.127.116.11 Prospective Student-Athletes’ Educational Institution. Any staff member or representative of athletics interest who wishes to contact a prospect at their high school must first obtain permission for the contact from that institution’s executive officer (or designee). Permission for such contact is not needed if the contact with the prospect will be made after official school hours.
18.104.22.168 Practice or Competition Site. Recruiting contact may not be made with a prospect before any athletics competition in which the prospect is a participant. Such contact shall be governed by the following:
a) Contact shall not be made with the prospect at any site before the contest on the day of competition,
b) Contact shall not be made with the prospect from the time that he/she reports on call and becomes involved in any competition-related activity (including travelling to an away game) until the prospective student-athlete is released for that day by the appropriate institutional personnel.
22.214.171.124.1 Contact with Prospect’s Relatives or Guardians at Practice or Competition Site. Recruiting contact may be made with relatives, guardians, or individuals with comparable relationship at the site of practice or competition, including during the conduct of the competition.
An institution’s staff member or any representative of athletics interests shall not be involved, directly or indirectly, in making arrangements for or giving or offering any financial aid or other benefits to the prospect or the prospect’s relatives or friends. Specifically prohibited benefits include, but are not limited to:
- providing or co-signing a loan for the prospect
- providing or co-signing a loan for the prospect’s relatives
- an employment arrangement for the prospect’s relative
- gifts of clothing or equipment
- free or reduced cost for merchandise, services, rentals or any purchase
- use of an institution’s athletics equipment
- sponsorship of or arrangement for an awards banquet for high school, prep school or two-year college athletes by an institution or representatives of its athletics interests.
An official visit is one that is financed in whole or in part by the member institution. An institution may only finance one official visit per prospect and the official visit may only be provided after January 1 of the prospect’s junior year of high school.
There are many rules in place governing official visits and the institution must maintain a detailed record of activity related to the visit.
An unofficial visit is one that is made at the expense of the prospect. A prospect may visit the campus an unlimited number of times at his/her own expense and these visits may occur at any time. The institution may provide the following expenses or entertainment on an unofficial visit:
a) The institution may provide complimentary admission to a home athletics event in which the team is practicing or competing. Tickets are only for that game and must be in the general seating area.
b) The institution may provide a meal to the prospect at the on-campus dining facility. An institution may provide a meal off-campus ONLY when all on-campus dining facilities are closed and the institution can certify that it is normal policy to provide such a meal to all prospective students (non-athletes) who visit campus.
c) An institution may provide housing during an unofficial visit provided such housing is generally available to all visiting prospective students.
Institutions may not use any form of a letter of intent or similar form of commitment in the recruitment of a prospect. An institution may use a non-binding athletics celebratory signing form after the prospective student-athlete has been accepted for enrollment at the institution. The only form that may be used for this purpose is a standard form provided by the NCAA national office. Institutional staff members MAY NOT be present at a public ceremony announcing the prospect’s acceptance of an admissions offer from the institution.
An institution may not publicize the visit of a prospect on their campus, may not introduce them at a game or other function, and may not discuss the ability of a particular prospective student-athlete or anything related to the recruitment process. An institution may only comment publicly to the extent of confirming it is recruiting that prospective student-athlete. Publicity about a prospect’s commitment by an institution may occur only AFTER the enrollment forms have been signed and the deposit has been paid.
An institution may not provide any funding, directly or through paid advertisements, to benefit a high school athletics program.
In order to participate in athletics, student-athletes must be enrolled in a full-time program of studies and must meet the same standard as other students at the institution in order to participate in extracurricular activities including athletics. Grades and credit hours must be monitored on a regular basis in order to ensure the eligibility of student-athletes.
In addition, student-athletes can engage in no more than four seasons of participation in any one sport. Division III measures seasons by participation, not competition. That means that there is no “red-shirting” in Division III. A student-athlete who suffers a season-ending injury, occuring during the first half of the season may be eligible, in some cases, to file for a medical hardship waiver which would allow an additional season of participation.
A student-athlete must complete his/her four seasons of participation during the first 10 semesters or first 15 quarters in which the student is enrolled in a full-time program of studies. (Emory & Henry uses the semester system.)
A student-athlete becomes ineligible if he/she participates on an outside team during the institution’s intercollegiate season in the sport. The student-athlete can only participate in non-collegiate, amateur competition outside of the regular playing season.
The composition of the financial aid package of student-athletes shall be consistent with the established policy of the institution and financial aid procedures for student-athletes shall be the same as for non-athletes. Institutions may not consider athletics ability, leadership, participation or athletic performance in the financial aid packaging.
The percentage of the total dollar value of aid awarded to student-athletes should be closely equivalent to the percentage of student-athletes within the student body. Institutions must submit an annual report to the NCAA that includes data regarding financial aid packages for student-athletes, as well as for non-athlete students.
A student-athlete may not receive an extra benefit unless it can be demonstrated that the same benefit is available to all Emory & Henry students. There is a limited exception that permits staff members and representatives to provide an occasional meal under the following conditions: the meal must be provided in the individual home (as opposed to a restaurant), or may be catered; it must be infrequent and/or for a special occasion; representatives can only provide transportation if the meal is held at their home.
Institutions shall limit organized practice activities, the length of the playing season, and the number of contests or dates of competition so as to minimize interference with the academic program of student-athletes. Athletically-related activity is only permitted within either an 18-week window (fall sports) or a 19-week window (winter and spring sports). Outside of those designated dates, coaches may not require student-athletes to participate in any team activity. Voluntary strength & conditioning sessions may be conducted outside of those designated dates but only under the supervision of a certified strength coach and within the regular academic year.
updated: May 22, 2015