Ocean State University recently published its camp and clinic dates for summer of 2015. As part of its community assistance program, a local business would like to help pay the costs for 10 individuals to attend the camp of their choice. Would it be permissible for a prospect aged individual to receive such assistance?
Yes with conditions. NCAA Official Interpretation- 10/30/14- Expenses to Attend an Institutional Camp or Clinic that Conducts Organized Competition (I)- states that an individual may receive actual and necessary expenses to attend an institutional camp or clinic from an outside sponsor (e.g., team, neighbor, business) other than an agent or a representative of an institution’s athletics interests (and, after initial full-time collegiate enrollment, other than a professional sports organization), provided the camp or clinic conducts organized competition in the sport for its participants. The committee noted that it is not permissible for an employee of an institutional camp or clinic (e.g., high school coach, two-year college coach) to provide actual and necessary expenses, including the camp admissions fee, for a prospective student-athlete who is an athletics award winner or is being recruited by the institution to attend the camp or clinic.
[References: NCAA Bylaws 126.96.36.199.4.3 (expenses from an outside sponsor), 188.8.131.52.1 (employment of prospective student-athletes/no free or reduced admission privileges — general rule), 184.108.40.206.2 (payment of expenses); official interpretation (2/19/87, Item No. 11) and official interpretation (10/30/14, Item No. 2)]