What is a Representative of Athletic Interests (Booster/Donor)?

NCAA rules state that all alumni, friends, and employees of an institution are classified as “representatives of athletic interests”. The NCAA specifies that once an individual has been categorized as a representative or “booster/donor” of an institution’s athletic program this status is retained forever. Additionally, the NCAA states that an individual can be a representative of athletic interests at more than one university simultaneously.

Representatives of athletic interests are individuals who have EVER…

  • Joined the institution’s booster club or a sport-specific support group;
  • Made any type of contribution to the athletics department or the booster club;
  • Provided or helped arrange employment for a student-athlete;
  • Assisted in any manner in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes; or
  • Promoted the institution’s athletics program in any manner.

    As a representative of athletic interests (booster/donor), you MAY NOT…

  • Contact a prospect’s coach, principal or counselor in an effort to evaluate a prospect;
  • Pick up films or transcripts from a prospect’s institution pertaining to the evaluation of that prospect;
  • Contact a prospect, his/her parents, legal guardians or spouse on or off campus;
  • Contact a prospect, his/her parents, legal guardians or spouse by telephone or letter;
  • Make special arrangements for entertainment for recruiting purposes; or
  • Provide extra benefits to a prospect, student-athlete at LU or another institution or to the parents, family and/or guardians of the prospect or student-athlete.

    As a representative of athletic interests (booster/donor), you MAY…

  • Contribute funds to finance athletic scholarships;
  • Provide employment to current student-athletes with compensation based upon work actually performed and at a rate commensurate with other employees performing similar job duties;
  • Invite a student-athlete or the entire team to your home to receive an occasional meal provided the meal is given in your home and the offer is extended infrequently for special occasions (i.e. Thanksgiving, Christmas); and
  • Have an incidental contact – not prearranged by the athletics department – with a recruit as long as no recruitment and only normal civility occurs. Any contact made at the recruit’s high school or junior college or at the site of the recruit’s practice or game is not considered incidental and is prohibited.

    Who is a prospective student athlete?
    The NCAA specifies that a prospective student-athlete (PSA) is a person who has started classes for the ninth (9th) grade, regardless of his/her athletics ability and/or participation.

  • A PSA remains a prospect even after he/she has signed a National Letter of Intent or accepts an offer of financial aid to attend an institution.
  • The prospect remains a prospect until he/she reports for the first day of classes for a regular term (fall or spring).

    The transfer student-athlete…
    As a representative of athletics interest you are not permitted to contact any student-athlete or the family member/guardian of a student-athlete who is or has enrolled at another institution for the purposes of recruiting and/or to determine the possibility of transferring to LU. The same rules apply to these students as they do for prospective student-athletes.

    What is an “Extra Benefit”?
    The NCAA defines an extra benefit as any special arrangement by an institutional employee or a representative of the institution’s athletics interest (“booster/donor”) to provide a student-athlete (or a student-athlete’s relative or friend) a benefit that is not generally available to other LU students and their relatives and/or friends. Therefore, please be aware of the following:

  • A student-athlete cannot accept anything from an employee of LU or athletic booster/donor (e.g., use of a car, hair cut, clothing, gifts, money, tickets for any type of entertainment, payment of long distance telephone call, etc.).
  • A student-athlete cannot accept free or reduced cost room and/or board from any LU employee or booster/donor of LU’s athletic programs. This includes on or off campus, in the student-athlete’s home city or any other location. This would prevent a student-athlete from “house sitting” without paying rental costs at a comparable rate for similar housing in that locale.
  • A student-athlete may not accept free or reduced cost storage room for personal belongings for the summer months from any LU employee or booster/donor of LU’s athletic programs.
  • A student-athlete cannot accept free or reduced merchandise or services from any merchant unless that free or reduced cost item is also available to the general public.
  • A student-athlete cannot eat at a restaurant as the guest of an athletic booster/donor or an employee of LU.
  • On infrequent, special occasions (e.g. a birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.), a student-athlete may accept an invitation to the home of an employee of LU or an athletic booster/donor for a meal.
  • A student-athlete cannot use a Department of Athletics copy machine, fax machine, or make long distance calls using departmental equipment or the long distance access code of an employee of LU or an athletic booster/donor.
  • Members of the Department of Athletics staff or an athletic booster/donor are not permitted to type reports, papers, letters, etc., for a student-athlete.
  • A student-athlete cannot receive a special discount, payment arrangement or credit on a purchase (e.g. airline ticket, clothing), or service (e.g. laundry, dry cleaning) from an employee of LU or an athletic booster/donor.
  • A LU employee or a booster/donor cannot provide a student-athlete with a loan of money, a guarantee of bond, the use of an automobile or the signing or co-signing of a note to arrange a loan, or pay or provide other compensation for work not performed or at unreasonable levels for work performed.
  • A student-athlete may not accept “frequent traveler miles” for trips, which are financed by the LU athletic department.
  • A LU employee may provide a student-athlete only reasonable and occasional local (i.e. within a 30 mile radius of the LU campus) transportation. However, a LU employee may not utilize a University vehicle for purposes of assisting a student-athlete’s move from one residence to another.

    Student-Athlete Appearances and Promotions
    Student-athletes are prohibited from being involved in the advertisement, promotion/endorsement of sales or use of any commercial product or service.

    Student-athletes are permitted to be involved in charitable, educational and non-profit promotional activities after prior approval has been granted by the CHAMPS/Life Skills Coordinator. For additional information, please call (409)-880-8333.

    Consequences of Violating NCAA Rules

  • A currently enrolled student-athlete being declared ineligible to participate.
  • The eligibility of a prospective student-athlete(s) being jeopardized.
  • Sanctions placed on the University and the athletic programs.

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