Daily Compliance Item- 1.13.17- Current Event

Texas track coach Mario Sategna reinstated after investigation

ESPN.com

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas has reinstated track coach Mario Sategna, who had taken a personal leave of absence in September 2016 and was the subject of a school ethics and misconduct investigation.

A joint statement from men’s athletic director Mike Perrin and women’s athletic director Chris Plonsky said all the school’s concerns had been addressed and that Sategna must meet “appropriate responsive measures” in the future. No details were provided.

The school had previously said the investigation did not involve NCAA violations or gender discrimination issues.

Sategna took over the men’s and women’s programs in 2013, and his teams won Big 12 titles in 2015.

In a statement, Sategna said he had to address personal issues and was grateful to be allowed to return to coaching.

This article was selected for educational purposes only.

Jennifer M. Condaras
Deputy Commissioner, NCAA Relations & Administration
Colonial Athletic Association

The opinions expressed in the Daily Compliance Item are the author’s and the author’s alone, and are not endorsed by The COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION or JumpForward. The Daily Compliance Item is not a substitute for a compliance office, case specific research, or the NCAA Bylaws. Do some homework, ask around, and get it right.

Daily Compliance Item- 1.6.17- Current Event

Texas bathroom bill on the radar of the NCAA, Big 12

USAToday.com

Less than a year after the sports and entertainment industries turned their backs on North Carolina for passing its so-called bathroom bill, Texas’ lieutenant governor on Thursday helped unveil a legislative proposal that has much of the same intent as North Carolina’s law but appears to include the potential for exceptions for special events.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, a conservative Republican and president of the Texas Senate, has been pushing for legislation he said would protect women and children by ensuring that transgender people would have to use public restrooms and locker rooms assigned to their “biological sex” on their birth certificate.

The Texas bill (SB6) contains language that would appear to make it possible for a private organization to determine the bathroom-usage rules at public facilities they rent — the situation that occurs when, for instance, the NCAA signs an agreement to hold the Final Four at a facility such as the Alamodome, which is owned and operated by the City of San Antonio.

Specifically, the bill states that a “private entity that leases or contracts to use a building owned or leased by” a public entity “is not subject to a policy developed under” the bill. In addition, the bill says that the state and various localities “may not require or prohibit a private entity that leases or contracts to use a building owned or leased by” a public entity “from adopting a policy on the designation or use of bathroom or changing facilities located in the building.”

The timetable on when the bill could pass is uncertain but Patrick labeled it a “top priority.”

“This issue is not about discrimination — it’s about public safety, protecting businesses and common sense,” Patrick said in a statement, adding in his news conference Thursday, “we’re on the right side of history. You can mark today as the day Texas is drawing a line in the sand and saying no.”

The NCAA made an emphatic statement against North Carolina’s HB2 in September when it removed all of its championship events from North Carolina, stating the bill is contrary to the association’s overall initiative for inclusion. That move, the NBA’s decision to relocate its All-Star game form Charlotte plus numerous event cancellations (including a Bruce Springsteen concert), reportedly has cost the state close to $4 million. Former Gov. Pat McCrory was not re-elected.

Most notable among upcoming NCAA championship events to be held in Texas is the women’s Final Four in Dallas on March 31 and April 2. The men’s Final Four is scheduled for San Antonio in 2018. The Football Championship Subdivision holds its championship game Frisco, Texas, annually.

NCAA spokesperson Stacey Osburn told USA TODAY Sports the association had no immediate comment on the bill’s introduction.

Hudson Taylor, executive director and founder of Athlete Ally, an organization dedicated to ending discrimination through the sports world, argues that the accommodation is masquerading a big-picture transphobic policy that he believes the NCAA and other organizations will see past.

“SB6 in Texas, regardless of any workaround, would not make (a safe environment) possible — namely because any fan or athlete attending a sporting event is also going to be required to eat somewhere, sleep somewhere,” Taylor said. “More than anything it’s about the larger transphobic message sent. A lot of these anti-trans efforts work under the guise of safety for women and children when statistically that doesn’t hold up. In reality, there’s way more trans women killed each year and states requiring trans people to use a different restroom creates an atmosphere that’s very overtly putting the trans community in harm’s way.”

After the NCAA’s move against HB2, the Atlantic Coast Conference quickly followed suit. Should the NCAA take similar action with SB6, the same domino effect might occur with the Big 12.

“The Big 12 Conference is aware of the filing of Senate Bill 6 in the Texas State legislature,” said Bob Burda, the league’s associate commissioner for communications. “We will track the bill’s progress through the legislature, and at an appropriate time discuss its impact with our member institutions.”

This article was selected for educational purposes only.

Jennifer M. Condaras
Deputy Commissioner, NCAA Relations & Administration
Colonial Athletic Association

The opinions expressed in the Daily Compliance Item are the author’s and the author’s alone, and are not endorsed by The COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION or JumpForward. The Daily Compliance Item is not a substitute for a compliance office, case specific research, or the NCAA Bylaws. Do some homework, ask around, and get it right.

Daily Compliance Item- 11.4.16- Current Event

Newly proposed NCAA rules would help fix time loopholes for student-athletes

USAToday.com

Major-college athletes will have the opportunity to gain some additional time away from their sports and some new input into demands on their time under a series of NCAA rules changes that officially have been proposed this week by the five major conferences.

Faced with a set of similar proposals at the 2016 NCAA convention, the conferences instead adopted a resolution under which they agreed to create a new set of proposals for consideration at the 2017 convention. Under increasing pressure from athletes, the schools have been seeking a way to address time demands in an orderly, relatively uniform way that would not end up placing restrictions on elite athletes in sports – especially those in swimming and track and field – who believe their training must be virtually year-round.

Under current NCAA rules, during a playing season and while school is in session, athletes are supposed to spend no more than 20 hours a week on required athletic activities. In sports other than football, that limit drops to eight hours per week during the offseason. But schools end up complying with the in-season limit, in part, through computation rules such as all competition and associated activities on the day of competition counting as three hours against the limit regardless of the actual duration of the competition and activities. In addition, a travel day that includes no athletic activities can be counted as the one day off per week that is required for athletes during the season.

However, NCAA surveys of athletes have shown – and school and conference officials readily acknowledge – that athletes spend much more time than that on their sports.

The proposed changes in the time-demand rules are set to be voted on in January under procedures that allow the Atlantic Coast, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and Southeastern conferences greater autonomy in rules making. (The Mid-American Conference’s schools voted in September to adopt a similar set of rules changes.) Approval from a required combination of the 65 schools and 15 athlete representatives — three from each of the five conferences – will allow, but not force, all Division I schools to make these changes that would become effective Aug. 1, 2017:

► A prohibition on required athletically related activities, other than those related to competition, during a continuous eight-hour period between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. There also basically would be an continuous eight-hour ban on required activities after an athlete is released from team obligations after a home game that ends after 9 p.m., or upon a return to campus after 9 p.m. from an away or neutral-site game.

This would effectively prevent coaches doing something like holding a practice immediately after a game or immediately after a team’s return from an away game. The change would not prevent athletes from receiving treatment for injuries during the eight-hour period.

► A prohibition on required athletically related activities for a seven-day period, beginning the day after a team’s last regular season or, as applicable, postseason game. In addition, schools would be required to give athletes an additional 14 days off during the regular academic year when classes are in session. Athletes would be able to use these days off during the regular season or outside the season.

At present, schools are required to give athletes one day off per week during the season.

► Schools would be required to develop a “student-athlete time management plan” for each varsity team under which athletes would be provided “adequate notice” of all of the team’s athletically related activities; schedules for all team activities are developed through “a collaborative process” that includes input from athletes; and athletes would be provided “adequate notice” of changes to previously established schedules for team activities.

Each team’s plan would have to be reviewed at the end of the year by the athletics director, the faculty athletics representative, the team’s head coach and at least one member of the team. A school’s president or chancellor would be required to go over each of these reviews.

The Pac-12 has offered two additional proposals:

► Schools would be required to give athletes one day off per week during a preseason practice period and during a vacation period when classes are not in session.

► Schools would be barred from holding off-campus practices that are not related to an away or neutral-site game during a school vacation period that occurs outside a team’s regular playing season. The proposal appears aimed at preventing activities such as the spring football practices that Michigan held earlier this year in Florida.

Schools in the Mid-American Conference voted in September to adopt the two-week, after-the-season time off period and an eight-hour period without activities after a team’s return from away games, effective with the 2017-18 school year. The MAC schools also voted to require athletes who are out of season to have a week off with no athletics obligations at the beginning of each semester and to require that team practice schedules be shared with athletes on a weekly basis and that if changes are necessary, the changes must be known by the athletes 24 hours prior to the scheduled practice time.

This article was selected for educational purposes only.

Jennifer M. Condaras
Deputy Commissioner, NCAA Relations & Administration
Colonial Athletic Association

The opinions expressed in the Daily Compliance Item are the author’s and the author’s alone, and are not endorsed by The COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION or JumpForward. The Daily Compliance Item is not a substitute for a compliance office, case specific research, or the NCAA Bylaws. Do some homework, ask around, and get it right.

Daily Compliance Item- 10.7.16- Current Event

There are few easy fixes when hurricanes force schedule changes

USATODAY.com

For UMass athletics director Ryan Bamford, the week began with a signal from the skies. Early forecasts were showing that Hurricane Matthew might impact the football team’s trip to Old Dominion, and the last thing he wanted to do was have an entire football team stuck in the Norfolk area unable to get home.

“The last thing we wanted to do was sit there for three days,” Bamford told USA TODAY Sports.

Bamford was hardly alone among his colleagues this week, as athletics directors up and down the Eastern seaboard monitored Matthew’s track and the potential havoc it would wreak in Florida.

UMass, however, didn’t have a lot of options to reschedule the game and, as an independent, didn’t have a conference office to help smooth the process. Because the Minutemen end the season with a Nov. 19 game at BYU and then an immediate trip from there to Hawaii, where it will play Nov. 26, it didn’t make sense to fly back and play another road game the first weekend in December.

Essentially, the choices were to move the Old Dominion game to Friday before the weather is supposed to hit that area or just cancel it entirely.

But changing travel plans on short notice with an entire football team — even by a day — is more complicated than it sounds. It wasn’t until midday Wednesday, in fact, that UMass had secured a new charter airplane to transport the team on Thursday afternoon.

And that doesn’t even take into consideration rebooking hotel rooms for more than 100 people and dealing with charter buses and catered meals that all had to be moved up by a day.

“It hasn’t been easy,” Bamford said. “My staff has been working on it for the last 48 hours. The charter company had to source a plane from another area of the country to get here, and there’s an added cost to that we’re still trying to figure out.

“We’re thinking it’s going to be $35-$40,000, and ODU is going to help defray that cost so we obviously want to play the game and they want to play it, but biting off another $40,000 to get this moved within 48 hours was a lot to consider. Everything else worked well. The hotels were great, the bus company was great, rental cars, all that stuff worked well from the first call. We got that shifted, thank goodness, but the flight was the one literally took us two days.”

The complications involved with even slight changes to a scheduled football game help explain why the Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference did not make final decisions regarding games in Miami, Gainesville, Fla., and Columbia, S.C. until late Thursday.

Florida-LSU scheduled for Saturday in Gainesville was postponed, and the SEC says it is looking for a reschedule date that works for both teams. Georgia at South Carolina was postponed until Sunday, time still to be determined.

One exception in the storm’s impact area was Tulane at UCF, which was scheduled for Friday night but canceled early Wednesday. The difference there was the teams had matching bye weeks on Nov. 5, making it a pretty easy call for UCF and the American Athletic Conference office.

Tulane athletics director Troy Dannen said several alternatives were considered including moving the game to New Orleans or finding a stadium somewhere in between to play the game. They also thought about playing it Saturday, but that would have required flying into the storm’s path on Friday.

In the end, though, moving it to November was the least messy solution.

“Without the matching bye dates, it would have been a much different process for us,” Dannen said. “We pretty much decided it wasn’t going to be played (on Tuesday night) but wanted to see if the models kept moving it west. When the models affirmed everything they’d been seeing that’s when the trigger got pulled.”

COACHING CAROUSEL CLIPS

Charlie Strong’s decision to demote Vance Bedford marked the second consecutive week in which a major program decided to change defensive coordinators midseason. The prior Sunday, Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly fired Brian VanGorder and elevated Greg Hudson, who already was on staff in an analyst position.

The Fighting Irish certainly didn’t look much better last Saturday against Syracuse, yielding 33 points and 489 total yards, and it remains to be seen how Strong taking control of Texas’ defense will affect the Longhorns on Saturday against Oklahoma.

But there’s no doubt head coaches are more apt these days to shake up their staffs during the season if the situation becomes desperate enough. Former Texas coach Mack Brown, now an ESPN analyst, made a similar move two games into 2013 season when he fired defensive coordinator Manny Diaz and replaced him with veteran college and pro coach Greg Robinson.

Though Brown has high regard for Diaz, who has totally rebuilt his reputation with strong defenses at Louisiana Tech, Mississippi State and currently Miami, it was the only way he could see for Texas to save its season — which it did, to some degree, by staying in the Big 12 title race until the final week.

“(Diaz) is a tremendous coach but it wasn’t working, and in modern-day football if it’s not working you have to try to fix it yourself or change it,” Brown told USA TODAY Sports. “And my feeling was that after two weeks and some tough games the year before, I felt like we needed to change it immediately. You also have to decide if you change it, is it going to be better? I happened to have Greg Robinson there who could help me, and I trusted him and (he) made it better and ended up having a chance to play for a conference championship against Baylor in the last game and Greg was a huge part of that.”

FAUX PAS OF THE WEEK

In the midst of a disappointing 3-2 start, Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson went public this week with a complaint that has been simmering behind the scenes for the last several years. Asked about the strength of the ACC following Monday’s practice, Johnson talked about how this isn’t the same ACC of 20 years ago where there might just be one ranked team.

“For whatever reason, other schools have committed to it, they’re committed to having a good program,” Johnson told reporters.

But when someone followed up and asked if Georgia Tech’s commitment to winning football is going to be the first conversation he has with recently hired athletics director Todd Stansbury, Johnson went off the rails and sounded a bit whiny given that he’s only won three of his last 14 games against FBS opponents.

“Here’s what has to happen,” Johnson said. “No matter what you do, commitment has to meet expectations. You can’t have expectations with no commitment. It won’t work no matter what you do. So if you say you want to be on this level, you have to be committed to be on that level and you have to do what those people are doing. Simple as that.”

Asked if he felt he was getting that at Georgia Tech, Johnson shot back: “Compared to who? I don’t know that anybody gets that but I think you could ask that about anybody, but what I’m saying is…You guys look, you don’t have to ask me. Do you think we got the same thing Clemson does? So how can the expectation be to beat them?”

Johnson isn’t wrong. Georgia Tech doesn’t have the same resources as Clemson or Florida State, but it also doesn’t have as big of a fan base and deals with different academic requirements. Part of the reason Johnson has succeeded at Tech is because his triple-option system helps level the playing field. And for a decade, he’s won at a pretty high level even without the fanciest facilities or biggest administrative staff.

Now that his program is in a rut, it just sounds like an excuse, which his fan base isn’t in the mood to hear.

Remember Quinn Nordin, the kicker Jim Harbaugh wanted to sign so badly that he showed up at 12:01 a.m. on the first day of recruiting and slept over in his parents’ guest room? Well, Nordin has been injured this season but is apparently healthy now and ready to compete for the starting job.

Michigan’s kicking game has been one blotch on its otherwise terrific start this season, as its kickers have combined to make just four of nine field goals. Nordin returned to practice this week, and Harbaugh had an interesting quote about the ongoing kicker evaluation.

“We’re looking for someone to put their iron jock on and put the ball through the uprights,” Harbaugh said during his weekly 97.1-FM radio appearance, according to mlive.com.

DUD OF THE WEEK

Florida International was the first school this season to fire its coach, letting go of Ron Turner after starting 0-4. UTEP could very well be headed toward the same result, having lost four consecutive games by a combined score of 169-35. Simply put, these are two awful teams and rank as the two worst in all of FBS according to the Sagarin ratings. They play each other Saturday in El Paso, so congratulations if you’re a fan of either team and can actually sit through it. Otherwise, feel free to hide your eyes.

This article was selected for educational purposes only.

Jennifer M. Condaras
Deputy Commissioner, NCAA Relations & Administration
Colonial Athletic Association

The opinions expressed in the Daily Compliance Item are the author’s and the author’s alone, and are not endorsed by The COLONIAL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION or JumpForward. The Daily Compliance Item is not a substitute for a compliance office, case specific research, or the NCAA Bylaws. Do some homework, ask around, and get it right.

Summer Daily Compliance Item- 6.3.15- UPDATED: NCAA 4-4 Transfer Directive

The NCAA has revised the Division I 4-4 Undergraduate Transfer Directive.  Student-Athletes that transferred during the 2014-15 academic year may seek immediate eligibility via the legislative relief process.  Those individuals transferring during the summer of 2015 will be reviewed under the new directive (e.g., no immediate eligibility–one year extension to the student-athlete’s eligibility clock.
Application of the NCAA Division I Committee for Legislative Relief 4-4 Transfer Directive
On the recommendation of the NCAA Division I Leadership Council Transfer Issues Subcommittee, the NCAA Division I Board of Directors ratified an amendment to the NCAA Division I Committee for Legislative Relief policies to specify that immediate eligibility no longer be provided for 4-4 undergraduate student-athletes who are not eligible to use a transfer exception. Instead, a one-year extension of the five-year clock for mitigating circumstances may be provided and any mitigation will continue to be evaluated under the current Committee for Legislative Relief waiver policies and guidelines. This change is effective for all undergraduate transfers seeking immediate eligibility during the 2015-16 academic year and thereafter. The following questions and answers are designed to assist the NCAA Division I membership with the application of legislation related to the 4-4 transfer directive.
Editor’s Note: This document was updated May 28, 2015. Questions that have been edited or added are shaded in gray.
Question No. 1: Is immediate eligibility an option for any 4-4 undergraduate transfer student-athlete who is not eligible to use the one-time transfer exception or any other transfer exception?
Answer: No. If an undergraduate student-athlete is not eligible to use a transfer exception (e.g., participates in a sport that is not eligible to use the one-time transfer, 4-4-4 transfer, etc.), an institution may seek a waiver to extend the student-athlete’s eligibility clock as immediate eligibility as a form of relief is not available.
Question No. 2: Must an institution determine that the student-athlete needs an extension of his or her eligibility clock prior to seeking a waiver for an extension?
Answer: No. Even though the student-athlete may not need an extension of his or her eligibility clock at the time of transfer, an institution may still proactively file an extension waiver request to determine whether the student-athlete will receive an extension of his or her clock to use in a later year, if necessary.
Question No. 3: Must an institution file a legislative relief waiver seeking an extension of the student-athlete’s five-year eligibility clock at the time of the student-athlete’s transfer?
Answer: No. An extension waiver may be filed at the time of transfer or in future academic years during the student-athlete’s enrollment. However, institutions should be mindful that contemporaneous documentation may be required to comply with Committee for Legislative Relief guidelines regardless of when the waiver is submitted.
Question No. 4: The student-athlete transferred and enrolled at my institution prior to the 2015 fall term. Is immediate eligibility an option for the student-athlete?
Answer: If the student-athlete enrolled during the 2014-15 academic year, the previous transfer directive is still applicable and immediate eligibility may be available via the legislative relief waiver process. Student-athletes enrolling during the 2015 summer term will be subject to the new transfer directive. However, an institution may file a legislative relief waiver to seek immediate eligibility for a student-athlete enrolling during the 2015 summer or fall term if the institution can demonstrate that it detrimentally relied on previous communications regarding the new transfer directive and ceased recruiting the student-athlete for enrollment during the 2015 spring term.
Question No. 5: How do I know if I should file an NCAA Division I Committee on Student-Athlete Reinstatement extension request or a Committee for Legislative Relief waiver request?
Answer: If the student-athlete has two or fewer denied participation opportunities and one of the denied participation opportunities will be, or is a result of a transfer year in residence, then the institution should file a Committee for Legislative Relief waiver.
Jennifer M. Condaras 
Associate Commissioner
BIG EAST Conference

Daily Compliance Item- 5.22.15- Current Event

If athletes ruled employees, Notre Dame will seek new sports model, AD says

USAToday.com
WASHINGTON — Notre Dame’s athletic director and Northwestern’s president emeritus said Tuesday that if college athletes ultimately are ruled to be employees of their respective schools, they foresee their universities withdrawing from the current setup of big-time sports.
Their comments come as the full National Labor Relations Board continues to deliberate about an effort to unionize scholarship football players at Northwestern. In addition, there are a range of pending federal court cases concerning athlete compensation, including one alleging that the NCAA and schools are violating the wage-and-hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act by not allowing athletes to be paid at least the federal minimum wage.
“Notre Dame’s just not prepared to participate in any model where the athlete isn’t a student first and foremost — that’s the hallmark for us,” Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick told USA TODAY Sports after a Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics meeting here during which he appeared as a panelist. “If the entire model were to move toward athletes as employees, we’d head in a different direction. Our president has been clear about that. I’m not articulating a unique position.”

“If tomorrow you waved a magic wand and all football players and basketball players were unionized, and privates were paying them, that’s not where the universities would be — or should be, in my mind,” he said.
This is “not hooked to the NLRB case, per se,” he said. “That’s the opening salvo. But there’s a lot of other things floating around. … If we wound up with a business where you wound up paying the players to play, I think alumni would have a different view (of college sports). I think the faculty would be unaccepting of it, at least at universities like Northwestern and Stanford and maybe Notre Dame, Rice, Duke. … We haven’t gotten there by a long shot. Will we? I don’t know. I hope not.”
Swarbrick’s and Bienen’s comments parallel those Stanford AD Bernard Muir made to USA TODAY Sports last May after appearing before a Congressional hearing on the Northwestern unionization effort. “If (Stanford’s athletes) are deemed employees, we will opt for a different model,” Muir said at the time.

NLRB regional director Peter Sung Ohr ruled in March 2014 that Northwestern’s scholarship football players are employees of the university, and he ordered a player vote on whether to form a union. The NLRB subsequently granted a request by the university for a full-board review of Ohr’s decision, but players cast ballots in April 2014 on whether to unionize. Because of Northwestern’s challenge, the ballots were impounded by the NLRB and presumably have not been counted.
Even if the full NLRB upholds Ohr’s ruling, there likely would be many steps before a final resolution.
Because of that, Southern Methodist President Gerald Turner — a Knight Commission co-chair — said his school has made no determination of the course it would take if athletes are found to be employees.
“It’s too quick to say whether we wouldn’t play anymore or anything like that,” he said, adding that his school also would have to weigh the implications of Texas being a right-to-work state. “That would only occur after a very long review of the implications in both directions. … I think (if athletes were deemed employees), you would see the private schools in (the) FBS would be having a meeting together pretty quickly to try to talk through what the implications of it would be. But we are optimistic that we won’t have to do that.”
This article was selected for educational purposes only.
Jennifer M. Condaras 
Associate Commissioner
BIG EAST Conference

Daily Compliance Item- 5.15.15- Current Event

UAB President will announce decision on football program on June 1

USAToday.com
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — UAB will announce its decision on whether to restart the football program on June 1.
University President Ray Watts disclosed that date Wednesday in an email to students, faculty and staff.
UAB is expected to receive a report from College Sports Solutions on Friday. The company is evaluating the findings cited in Watts’ December decision to cut football, rifle and bowling.
The initial study by CarrSports Consulting calculated that it would cost UAB $49 million over five years to field a competitive football program.
A task force commissioned by UAB selected College Sports Solutions after the university fired its first choice.
Watts says university officials “will consider the report’s findings, along with other important, valuable and mission-critical data” to determine the program’s fate.
This article was selected for educational purposes only.
Jennifer M. Condaras 
Associate Commissioner
BIG EAST Conference