The Head Men’s Basketball Coach at Ocean State University (OSU) was contacted by the event operator for a new tournament being held next weekend. The event operator is trying to get as many college coaches in attendance as possible since it is a new tournament and will be competing with other established events. The event operator offers to pay the coach’s airfare and lodging to attend the event. Since the institution would have paid these expenses anyway, is it permissible for the event operator to pay for them?
No. NCAA Educational Column- 10/6/11- Expenses from a Recruiting Service of Event Operator (I/II/III)- states that NCAA member institutions should note that all funds for the recruitment of prospective student-athletes shall be deposited directly with the member institution, which shall be exclusively and entirely responsible for the manner in which such funds are expended. Therefore, it is not permissible for any outside organization or individual (e.g., recruiting or scouting service, event operator) to provide institutional coaching staff members with expenses (e.g., travel, lodging) to attend any event for recruiting purposes. Such expenses are considered funds donated for recruiting purposes and such funds must be deposited directly with the member institution, as opposed to being provided directly to an institutional coaching staff member(s). Further, any individual or organization that provides funds directly to the athletics department would be considered a representative of athletics interests and subject to all legislation applicable to that status (e.g., contact, telephone and evaluation restrictions).
[References: NCAA Division I Bylaws 126.96.36.199 (other restrictions, athletics representatives) and 13.14.4 (slush funds), Division II Bylaw 188.8.131.52 (other restrictions), Division III Bylaws 13.02.11 (representative of athletics interests) and 13.01.4 (recruiting by representatives of athletics interests), Divisions I and II Bylaws 13.02.14 (representatives of athletics interests) and 13.14.4 (slush funds), Divisions I, II and III Bylaw 13.14.1 (institutional control)]
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