Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Compliance Tip of the Week

The volleyball coaches at Ocean State University are planning their recruiting trips for this spring.  There are several tournaments they want to attend but have to make sure they do not exceed the total number of evaluation days or the maximum number of evaluations per prospect.

Here is the plan for the next recruiting trip:

Assistant Coach attends a tournament Friday, Saturday and Sunday and watches 8 different teams
Head Coach attends the same tournament Saturday and Sunday and watches 4 teams…the same as the assistant coach

How many evaluation days were utilized?
How many total evaluations were utilized?

A.      5 evaluation days and 1 evaluation
B.      2 evaluation days and 1 evaluation
C.      1 evaluation day and 1 evaluation
D.     5 evaluation days and 2 evaluations

The answer is A.  The assistant coach used 3 evaluation days and the head coach used 2 evaluation days even though they were at the same event at the same time.  NCAA Bylaw states that an evaluation day is defined as one coach engaged in the evaluation of any prospective student-athlete on one day (12:01 a.m. to midnight).  Two coaches making evaluations on the same day shall use two evaluation days. The combined total of such days for all staff members shall not exceed 210 in football (270 for U.S. service academies) [42 during the fall evaluation period (54 for U.S. service academies) and 168 during the spring evaluation period (216 for U.S. academies)], 50 in softball and 80 in women's volleyball. (Adopted: 1/9/96 effective 8/1/96, Revised: 1/12/99 effective 8/1/99, 4/27/00 effective 8/1/01, 4/25/02 effective 8/1/02, 4/28/05 effective 8/1/05, 1/14/08 effective 8/1/08, 4/14/08, 1/16/10 effective 8/1/10)
Because the event was a tournament conducted on consecutive days, the coaches only used one evaluation for the prospects they watched.  NCAA Bylaw state that evaluation during each day of a tournament held during the academic year shall count as a separate evaluation except as follows (see Bylaw  (Revised:  3/22/06)
(a) Evaluation of multiple contests in a tournament that occurs on consecutive days (and normally at the same site) shall count as a single evaluation.
(b) Evaluation of multiple contests in a single tier of a tournament (e.g., sectional, district, regional) shall count as a single observation.  If a particular tier of a tournament is subdivided into identifiable segments (e.g., conducted on different weekends), evaluation of contests in each identifiable segment counts as a single observation.  (Revised:  1/14/97)

Thanks to Jennifer Conderas at the BigEast Conference for the excellent example on recruiting days.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cost of Living Stipend Feedback

Funding Student-Athlete Stipends Adds to Northwestern's Costs

As schools all over the country are beginning to address whether or not they have the financial support to fund the full $2,000 cost of living stipends recently approved by the NCAA Board of Directors, even some schools at the BCS level are finding that they may struggle to support the stipends.  While some conferences are getting involved and either mandating the stipends, or prohibiting them, the decision will still come down to the individual schools in most cases.  Bigger schools have more revenue streams from a variety of sources, but the proposition of adding several hundred thousand dollars to the budget is not something to glance over.  In order to receive the stipends, a student must already be on a full scholarship and bigger schools also have more students on the full ride scholarships, meaning more costs associated with the stipends.  While the cost implications are certainly a major factor when looking at the stipends, there can also be potential Title IX implications as well, something this article touches on as well.  That is going to depend on what prong a school is using to comply with Title IX, but issues can certainly arise if a school is looking to add the stipend for many of their male athletes on full rides; doing that may certainly mean that the school will need to provide the stipend to at least a portion of their female athletes on full scholarships. 

President Emmert is quoted in the article as saying that fine tuning of the BOD legislation that was passed will take place over the coming years, which is a reversal of how the NCAA legislative process normally works.  It will certainly be interesting to see what, if any, modifications are made to the financial aid and eligibility issues as we move towards these being implemented across the NCAA membership.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Great Baseball Card Debate

Russell Wilson's Baseball Card for Sale on eBay

The University of Wisconsin Compliance Office is sending out cease-and-desist emails to eBay selleres who have Russell Wilson's baseball card up for auction.  While the article is a bit cynical about NCAA amateurism rules, it is not uncommon for Compliance Offices to send out these notifications companies or publications that use the photo of a current student-athlete without anyone at the Athletics Department's knowledge.  Commonly, this happens when a photo is taken off of the athletics website and re-used without anyone's knowledge.  This case is a bit unique because Wilson is a legitimate two sport athlete and the card company got his photo at spring training.  As long as either the student or the University make an effort to stop the amateurism violation that is occurring, that will be sufficient in most cases, but it is not uncommon to see this type of reaction to a possible Bylaw issue.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Impact of the NCAA Board of Director's Changes

NCAA Legislation will Impact Initial Eligibility

The Atlanta Journal Constitution provides some interesting insight into the new initial eligibility requirements that were approved last month by the NCAA Board of Directors.  According to research data put out by the NCAA, 43% of men's basketball players who initially enrolled in college for the 09/10 school year would not have met the recently approved initial eligibility standards.  That same number for football was at 35% and when looking at all student-athlete's initially enrolling in 09/10 was just over 15%.  While the new eligibility requirements do not bring back partial-qualifiers, students who meet the current eligibility requirements will still be allowed to receive aid and practice in their first year; the difference being that these students will automatically be eligible for four years of competition following their "academic redshirt".

Initial eligibility was not the only area addressed by the BOD, they also revised the APR standards and penalty structures.  The new APR benchmark will be 930 over a four year period, an increase of five points from the previous benchmark score.  The penalty structure will also be changing to reflect the renewed focus on academics.

The good news with all of this is that both the APR and the initial/transfer eligibility requirements will be phased in over the next several years.  The APR benchmarks will be implemented over the next three year period, while the freshman eligibility requirements will go into effect for the Fall of 2015/16- which are this year's current HS freshman.

If you would like to get a more detailed description of all of these requirements, please plan to attend the Monthly Coaches Compliance Workshop, which will be tomorrow morning (Wednesday November 16th) at 10:30AM.  The meeting will be held in the HLC Conference Room.  We hope to see you there!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Men's Basketball Coaches, Recruits Weigh in on Rules Changes

Feedback on New NCAA MBB Recruiting Model

Last Thursday the NCAA Board of Directors met with the purpose of reviewing NCAA rules and regulations in several areas.  Among the areas that the Board touched on were initial eligibility requirements, transfer eligibility requirements, APR benchmarks, scholarships and recruiting issues in Men's Basketball.

This article offers interesting insight into the legislation that was modified in Men's Basketball because it reached out for opinions from current DI Men's basketball coaches, AAU coaches, recruits and the parents of recruits. Several of the revisions that were made were targeted at allowing college coaches earlier access to recruits.  While this may seem counter intuitive from an NCAA standpoint, the idea in the Men's Basketball world is that allowing earlier access directly to the recruits will cut down on the influence that third parties will have on the recruiting process.

Each piece of legislation enacted by the Board of Directors will carry a different effective date.  Changes to the APR and to initial/ transfer eligibility will go into effect two to four years from now.  This will allow coaches and student-athlete's to plan to meet the new standards established by the legislation.  As for the men's basketball specific pieces of legislation, coaches will now be able to recruit at non-scholastic events held in April starting with the April of 2012.  Along with that, the recruiting calendar for July 2012 will be scaled back from what it has been in the past.  The rules which will allow the earlier access carry an August 1st, 2012 effective date.  After that date PSA's will be allowed to make official visits during their Junior years of high school (in Men's Basketball only).

The Compliance Office will have more information on all of the proposals passed by the Board of Directors as soon as the Head Coaches Meeting this Wednesday.  There is a very good chance that it will also be a main topic of the November Coaches Compliance Workshop, which is Wednesday November 16th at 10:00AM in the SkyDome East Suites.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Huskies Cancel Alumni Shootaround

Washing Dumps Scrimmage After Radio Interview

The University of Washington has canceled  an alumni scrimmage after one of the coaching staff members mentioned the upcoming scrimmage during a radio interview.  The publicity about the event is at the heart of the issue because of the wording in specific Bylaw 14 bylaw.  The shootaround, which would have otherwise been permissible on an "occasional" basis, is now not permissible due to the public announcement.  This specific bylaw differs from the Bylaw 17 rules which allow the closed scrimmages as soon as the start of the permissible playing season in Basketball.  These closed scrimmages, which are against outside competition and not a group of alumni, must be closed to the public, cannot be publicized and no score can be kept.  Exhibition basketball games that are open to the public can also be held as soon as the permissible playing season starts, these are games against non-division one schools and can be publicized and open to the public; in fact, St. John's played one of these games last night in New York.

Publicity also plays a role in several other NCAA bylaws, including many of the bylaws that deal with recruiting and signing NLI's; two other big topics that will be in the news two weeks from today when recruits from several sports will be lighting up fax machines all over the country. 

Just a few examples of how publicity plays into the NCAA manual.  I hope that these situations help to serve as reminders to think before you speak!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New Housing Information

  Attached are the links to the websites for the new campus dorms.  The website now has information on floor plans and it does list rental rates for the various housing options.  From what is now listed online, it appears that rent will range from $559 per month to $599 per month depending upon the layout.  It also appears that the “Hilltop Dorm” will have a 12 month lease and the “Suites” will have a 10 month lease term.

The contact information for the leasing company is listed online.  There will also be representatives from the leasing company at the three remaining home football games.  The company will have an informational table set up on the West concourse, which is the student seating side of the Dome.