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Note: This page is intended to assist as a guideline to complying with NCAA regulations. The material posted is summarized from the 2003-2004 Division I Manual and in no way constitutes, nor is a substitute for, the material found in Bylaw, Article 12. An institution or individual that is unsure about the provisions discussed should refer to the latest Manual and/or consult the league office or one of FAU's compliance representatives.

General Principal

NCAA Bylaw 12.01.2 reads: Member institutions' athletics programs are designed to be an integral part of the educational program. The student-athlete is considered an integral part of the student body, thus maintaining a clear line of demarcation between college athletics and professional sports.

The NCAA has drafted and implemented several laws that differentiate between an amateur and professional athlete. In order to remain eligible by NCAA standards a student-athlete must comply with all laws and regulations. The following rules and interpretations relating to amateurism have been developed and can be found in the NCAA Manual.

David Demers

12.1.1 Amateur Status
An individual loses amateur status and, thus, shall not be eligible for intercollegiate competition in a particular sport if the individual:

(a) Uses his or her athletics skill (directly or indirectly) for pay in any form in that sport (e.g., receipt of payment from agents or for participation in exhibitions or postseason all-star contests). [12.1.1-(a)]

(b) Accepts a promise of pay even if such pay is to be received following completion of intercollegiate athletics participation. [12.1.1-(b)]

(c) Signs a contract or commitment of any kind to play professional athletics, regardless of its legal enforceability or any consideration received. [12.1.1-(c)]

(d) Receives, directly or indirectly, a salary, reimbursement of expenses or any other form of financial assistance from a professional sports organization based upon athletics skill or participation, except as permitted by NCAA rules and regulations. [12.1.1-(d)]

(e) Competes on any professional athletics team and knows (or had reason to know) that the team is a professional athletics team (per 12.02.5), even if no pay or remuneration for expenses was received. [12.1.1-(e)]

(f) Enters into a professional draft (other than in the sport of basketball) or an agreement with an agent or other entity to negotiate a professional contract. [12.1.1-(f)]

(g) Participation in a Foreign Tour Subsequent to Exhausting Eligibility.

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Agents

12.3.1 General Rule
An individual shall be ineligible for participation in an intercollegiate sport if he or she ever has agreed (orally or in writing) to be represented by an agent for the purpose of marketing his or her athletics ability or reputation in that sport. Further, an agency contract not specifically limited in writing to a sport or particular sports shall be deemed applicable to all sports, and the individual shall be ineligible to participate in any sport.

Violation Example: University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Aug 1995 (PDF)
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12.3.1.1 Representation for Future Negotiations
An individual shall be ineligible per Bylaw 12.3.1 if he or she enters into a verbal or written agreement with an agent for representation in future professional sports negotiations that are to take place after the individual has completed his or her eligibility in that sport.

12.3.1.2 Benefits from Prospective Agents
An individual shall be ineligible per Bylaw 12.3.1 if he or she (or his or her relatives or friends) accepts transportation or other benefits from: (Revised: 1/14/97)

(a) Any person who represents any individual in the marketing of his or her athletics ability. The receipt of such expenses constitutes compensation based on athletics skill and is an extra benefit not available to the student body in general; or

(b) An agent, even if the agent has indicated that he or she has no interest in representing the student-athlete in the marketing of his or her athletics ability or reputation and does not represent individuals in the student-athlete's sport. (Adopted: 1/14/97)

Violation Example: California State University, Sep 2003 (PDF)
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12.3.2 Legal Counsel
Securing advice from a lawyer concerning a proposed professional sports contract shall not be considered contracting for representation by an agent under this rule, unless the lawyer also represents the individual in negotiations for such a contract.

12.3.2.1 Presence of a Lawyer at Negotiations
A lawyer may not be present during discussions of a contract offer with a professional organization or have any direct contact (i.e., in person, by telephone or by mail) with a professional sports organization on behalf of the individual. A lawyer's presence during such discussions is considered representation by an agent.

12.3.3 Athletics Scholarship Agent
Any individual, agency or organization that represents a prospective student-athlete for compensation in placing the prospect in a collegiate institution as a recipient of institutional financial aid shall be considered an agent or organization marketing the individual's athletics ability or reputation.

12.3.3.1 Talent Evaluation Services and Agents
A prospect may allow a scouting service or agent to distribute personal information (e.g., high-school academic and athletics records, physical statistics) to member institutions without jeopardizing his or her eligibility, provided the fee paid to such an agent is not based on placing the prospect in a collegiate institution as a recipient of institutional financial aid.

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12.3.4 Professional Sports Counseling Panel
It is permissible for an authorized institutional professional sports counseling panel to:

(a) Advise a student-athlete about a future professional career;

(b) Provide direction on securing a loan for the purpose of purchasing insurance against a disabling injury; (Adopted: 1/16/93)

(c) Review a proposed professional sports contract;

(d) Meet with the student-athlete and representatives of professional teams;

(e) Communicate directly (e.g., in-person, by mail or telephone) with representatives of a professional athletics team to assist in securing a tryout with that team for a student-athlete; (Adopted: 1/11/94)

(f) Assist the student-athlete in the selection of an agent by participating with the student-athlete in interviews of agents, by reviewing written information player agents send to the student-athlete and by having direct communication with those individuals who can comment about the abilities of an agent (e.g., other agents, a professional league's players' association); and (Adopted: 1/11/94)

(g) Visit with player agents or representatives of professional athletics teams to assist the student-athlete in determining his or her market value (e.g., potential salary, draft status). (Adopted: 1/11/94)

12.3.4.1 Appointment by Chief Executive Officer
This panel shall consist of at least three persons appointed by the institution's chief executive officer (or his or her designated representative from outside the athletics department).

12.3.4.2 Composition
No more than one panel member may be an athletics department staff member. All other panel members must be selected by the institution from among its full-time employees employed outside the athletics department. No institutional staff member who is a sports agent may be a member of the panel. All panel members shall be identified to the NCAA national office. (Revised: 1/11/94)

12.1.1.4.2 Exception for Insurance against Disabling Injury or Illness
An individual may borrow against his or her future earnings potential from an established, accredited commercial lending institution exclusively for the purpose of purchasing insurance (with no cash surrender value) against a disabling injury or illness that would prevent the individual from pursuing a chosen career, provided a third party (including a member institution's athletics department staff members, its professional sports counseling panel or representatives of its athletics interests) is not involved in arrangements for securing the loan. The student-athlete shall report all such transactions and shall file copies of any loan documents associated with disability insurance with the member institution, regardless of the source of the collateral for the loan. The student-athlete also shall file copies of the insurance policy with the member institution, regardless of whether a loan is secured to purchase the insurance policy. (Revised: 1/16/93, 1/14/97 effective 8/1/97)

Equipment

16.12.2.5 Athletics Equipment
A student-athlete may not accept athletics equipment, supplies or clothing (e.g., tennis racquets, golf clubs, hockey sticks, balls, shirts) from a manufacturer or commercial enterprise. Such items may be provided to the student-athlete's institution, to be utilized by the institution's team in accordance with accepted practices for issuance and retrieval of athletics equipment.

Advertising & Promotions

12.5.2.1 Advertisements and Promotions Subsequent to Enrollment
Subsequent to becoming a student-athlete, an individual shall not be eligible for participation in intercollegiate athletics if the individual:

(a) Accepts any remuneration for or permits the use of his or her name or picture to advertise, recommend or promote directly the sale or use of a commercial product or service of any kind, or

(b) Receives remuneration for endorsing a commercial product or service through the individual's use of such product or service.

12.5.2.1.1 Exceptions
The individual's eligibility will not be affected, provided the individual participated in such activities prior to enrollment and the individual:

(a) Meets the conditions set forth in Bylaw 12.5.1.3 that would permit continuation of such activities; or

(b) Takes appropriate steps upon becoming a student-athlete to retract permission for the use of his or her name or picture and ceases receipt of any remuneration for such an arrangement.

12.5.2.2 Use of a Student-Athlete's Name or Picture without Knowledge or Permission
If a student-athlete's name or picture appears on commercial items (e.g., T-shirts, sweatshirts, serving trays, playing cards, posters, photographs) or is used to promote a commercial product sold by an individual or agency without the student-athlete's knowledge or permission, the student-athlete (or the institution acting on behalf of the student-athlete) is required to take steps to stop such an activity in order to retain his or her eligibility for intercollegiate athletics. (Revised: 1/11/97)

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