Information for Fans, Friends, Boosters and Former Students

Introduction

Cheyney University's reputation is one of upholding the highest degree of academic and athletic integrity. This tradition can only continue if the alumni, boosters and friends of the Institute are well informed about the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) rules and regulations for "Representatives of Athletics Interests."

The NCAA has explicit guidelines for what Representatives of Athletics Interest, "traditionally known as boosters," can and cannot do. The Cheyney University Athletic Association is providing you with this information to assist with any questions you may have regarding the recruitment of prospective student-athletes and contact with currently enrolled student-athletes.

Any intentional violation of NCAA legislation involving a booster organization may lead to disassociation from the Cheyney University Athletic Association. Disassociation would result in a loss of any benefits or privileges related to the Athletics Department.

Representative of Athletics Interest

A Representative of Athletics Interest (booster) is anyone who is known (or should be known) by a member of the institution's executive or athletic administration to:

  • Participate in or have been a member of a sport support group or a booster club.
  • Provide or have helped arrange employment for student-athletes or provided benefits to enrolled student-athletes.
  • Have been involved, in any way in the promotion of Cheyney University's athletics program.
  • Participated as a varsity athlete at Cheyney University.
  • Make or have made a donation to Cheyney University or a Cheyney University booster club.
  • Assist with recruitment.
  • Has been requested by the athletics department staff to assist in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes or is assisting in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes.
  • Note: Once an individual or organization is identified as a Representative of the Institution's Athletics Interest, the person or organization retains that identity forever.
  • Remember: Once a booster, ALWAYS a booster.

Institutional Control and Compliance

Institutional Control of athletics is a fundamental requirement of NCAA Legislation. Specifically, the NCAA Constitution provides that each institution shall be responsible for:

  • Controlling its intercollegiate athletics program in compliance with the rules and regulations of the NCAA.
  • Monitoring its program to insure compliance, identifying and reporting to the NCAA instances in which compliance has not been achieved and taking appropriate corrective actions.
  • Ensuring that members of the institution's staff, student-athletes and other individuals or groups representing the institutions athletics interests comply with NCAA rules.
  • Cheyney University will make you aware of and ask that you abide by the NCAA regulations concerning your actions in support of our programs. Cheyney University must be aware of and have control over any booster organizations of Wolves teams. If you are aware of any booster organizations, please contact the Cheyney University Athletic Department so that these organizations may be informed of the rules governing their operations.


Rules Governing the Recruitment of Prospective Student-Athletes (Prospects)

  • A prospective student-athlete is defined by the NCAA as any person who has begun classes for the ninth grade (regardless of sports participation).
  • A prospective student-athlete remains a prospect even after he or she has signed a Letter of Intent or accepts an offer of financial aid to attend Cheyney University.
  • The prospect remains a prospect until they report for the first day of classes for a regular term (fall or spring).
  • Only coaches and athletic department staff members can be involved (make contact) in the recruiting process. A contact is defined as any face-to face encounter between a prospect or the prospect's parent or legal guardians during which time any dialogue in excess of an exchange of a greeting occurs.
  • In general, all representatives of the institution's athletics interest who are not employed by Cheyney University are prohibited from contacting a prospect or prospect's family to encourage the prospect to participate in intercollegiate athletics at Cheyney University.

You are prohibited from:

  • Contacting a prospect in person on or off our campus.
  • Writing or telephoning a prospect or a member of the prospect's family.
  • Making arrangements for a prospect or the prospect's relatives or friends, to receive money or financial aid of any kind.
  • Posting information on your website that is NOT available to the general public.
  • Providing transportation for a prospect or the prospect's relatives or friends to visit our campus.
  • Providing free tickets or tickets at a reduced cost for prospects or the prospects relatives or friends to attend an athletic event.
  • Entertaining high school, prep school or community college coaches.
  • Visiting a prospect's educational institutions to pick up films or transcripts pertaining to the athletic or athletic eligibility of a prospect.
  • Visiting the prospect's coach, principal or counselor in an attempt to evaluate the prospect.

As a representative of the institution's athletics interest, you are permitted to:

  • Notify our coaches about prospects in your area that may be strong additions to our teams.
  • Attend high school or two-year college athletic contests or other events where prospects may compete, however, you may not contact the prospect or the prospect's relatives.
  • Continue existing friendships with families of prospects, but you may not attempt to recruit the prospect.
  • Report public recruiting information on your website.
  • Make a financial donation.

You MAY make a financial donation to a high school athletics program
in your locale provided:

  • You make the donation of your own accord,
  • Your donation is distributed through the normal channels established by the high school,
  • Your donation is not earmarked for a specific prospect, and
  • Your donation is not an item that Cheyney University would not have been able to provide to the high school or its athletics program. (You cannot serve as a second-party donor.)

Guidance for Website Postings

Cheyney University is responsible for the actions of boosters; therefore, be aware that you may be unintentionally causing Cheyney University to commit an NCAA violation.

What would make you a booster? YOU ARE A BOOSTER IF YOU:

  • Participate in or have been a member of any of Cheyney University's various clubs (“C” Club, etc.)
  • Make or have made a donation to any of Cheyney University's athletic programs.
  • Provide or have helped arrange summer employment for student-athletes.
  • Have been involved in promoting Cheyney University Athletics in any way.
  • Are the parent(s) or guardian(s) of an enrolled student-athlete.
  • Participated as a varsity athlete at Cheyney University.
  • Assist with recruitment.
  • Have been requested by the athletics department staff to assist in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes or is assisting in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes.

ONCE A BOOSTER, ALWAYS A BOOSTER. Therefore, you remain subject to the restrictions on Cheyney University, even when you no longer actively support Cheyney.

Please consider the impact on Cheyney University, when you post recruiting-related information on the Web. We would hope that you would not want to post anything that would have an adverse effect on Cheyney University's athletics programs. Your cooperation in helping Cheyney University stay clean is greatly appreciated. If you have any questions, please call me, Harold Johnson, at (610)399-2369.

Websites Established by Individuals Independent of the Institution

  • Establishing a Website in and of itself does not categorize an individual as a media entry. Therefore, individuals who establish Websites independent of the institution continue to be subject to all applicable restrictions related to contacting prospects for a recruiting purpose.
  • Recruiting information that is not available to the general public may not be posted on Websites established by individuals independent of the independent of the institution.
  • Individuals operating independently of the institution may not contact prospects to obtain recruiting information.

Noninstitutional Publications May Be Considered Boosters

A noninstitutional athletics recruiting publication (dedicated solely to reporting on a single institution's athletics program) that engages in activities related to the recruitment of prospective student-athletes may in some instances, be considered a representative of the institution's athletics interests. (Reference: Former NCAA Interpretations Committee 10/01/01, Item No. 6)

Taken from the 2000-01 NCAA GTRC: The Use of the Internet in Recruiting Division I, page 6.

Rules Governing Contacts and Benefits for Student-Athletes

In addition to regulating contact of our representatives of athletics interest with prospects, the NCAA also regulates contact with current Cheyney University student-athletes, as well as their relatives and friends.

An extra benefit is any special arrangement by an institutional employee or a representative of athletics interest to provide a student-athlete, prospect, or their relatives or friends a benefit not expressly authorized by NCAA legislation.

In general, you may not provide anything or make special arrangements for student-athletes and prospective student-athletes that are not available to the general student population.

Examples of prohibited extra benefits not allowed by NCAA rules, but are not
limited to, are as follows:

  • Providing cash or loans in any amount, or signing or co-signing for a loan.
  • Providing gifts of any kind, including birthday cards and holiday gifts.
  • Providing special discounts for goods and services .(e.g., car repairs, legal services, meals).
  • Providing free rent or reduced rent, housing.
  • Purchasing complimentary admissions from a student-athlete.
  • Providing an honorarium to a student-athlete for a speaking engagement.
  • Providing loans based on earnings potential as a professional athlete.

As a representative of the institution's athletics interest, you are permitted to:

  • Invite a student-athlete or entire team into your home for an occasional meal (once a semester), but please coordinate such activity with the Director of Compliance and the respective Head Coach.
  • Provide summer employment for enrolled student-athletes (see information regarding employment below).
  • Provide tickets to a professional sports contest to an institution for entertainment of student-athletes involved in an away-from-home athletics contest.
  • Provide an occasional meal in your home to a student-athlete or an entire team.
  • Provide transportation to your home for a student-athlete who will be receiving an occasional meal there.
  • Provide a summer job to a student-athlete as long as it is at a normal rate of pay for that position and the student-athlete is paid for work actually performed, but remember to check with the compliance office at
  • Cheyney University before doing so.

Consequences to Boosters for NCAA Violations

Institutions are required by the NCAA to notify boosters of consequences regarding rules violations. Boosters found in violation of NCAA rules are subject to losing benefits and privileges, including season tickets.

The NCAA Committee on Infractions has processed cases in which penalties have included both the disassociation of boosters with the institution and the loss of season ticket privileges.

Rules Governing Student-Athlete Employment

As of August 1, 1998, student-athletes receiving grant-in-aid are eligible for employment during the regular academic year as well as during official vacation periods (Christmas and spring break) and the summer.

In reference to this legislation regarding employment during the academic year, student-athletes may earn up to the cost of attendance provided:

  • The student-athlete has spent one academic year in residence at the institution.
  • The student-athlete is academically eligible to compete at the institution.
  • The Compliance Office must keep written records verifying all student-athlete employment records.

The following rules are applicable to student-athlete employment:

  • Employers must receive prior approval before hiring any student-athletes.
  • The student-athlete is compensated only for work actually performed at a rate commensurate with the
    going rate in that locality for similar services.
  • The student-athlete has not been hired based on his or her athletics ability.
  • Transportation to work for student-athletes is not provided unless transportation is provided for all other
    employees.

Rules Governing Promotional Activities for Student-Athletes

All charitable, educational and nonprofit promotional activities involving student-athletes must have prior approval from the Director of Athletics. If you have questions, please call the Director of Compliance (610)399-2369 for the appropriate forms.

Student-Athletes are not permitted to be involved in the advertisement, recommendation or promotion of sales or use of a commercial product or service of any kind.

Rules Governing Requests for Donations and Autographed Items

Cheyney University is not allowed to participate directly or indirectly in fundraising that will benefit a high school athletics program. Therefore, regarding a donated item or an item that includes the original signature of either an eligible student-athlete or a coach at Cheyney University (e.g. pictures, helmets, posters, game balls):

  • All requests for donations/autographed items must be submitted in writing (via mail or fax) to the Cheyney University Director of Athletics;
  • The item shall not be provided to a high school or to a high school staff member (e.g. coach, athletics director, principal), especially for the purpose of fundraising;
  • The item shall not be provided to a high school athlete (prospect) or to the parent of a high school athlete;
  • The item shall not be sold to another person without the written consent of Cheyney University.

Rules Governing Agents and Amateurism

A student-athlete loses their amateur status and shall not be eligible for intercollegiate competition in a particular sport if:

  • The student-athlete or family member negotiate, sign or enters into any written or oral agreement with an agent.
  • The student-athlete or family member accepts or receives any extra benefits from an agent or anyone who wishes to represent the student-athlete.
  • The student-athlete competes with a professional sports team or competes as a professional in an individual sport and receives any compensation for participation.
  • The student-athlete uses his or her athletic skills for pay or promise of pay.

Rules Governing Gambling

Student-athletes, coaches and/or employees of the Cheyney University Athletic Department may not provide information to individuals involved in any type of organized gambling concerning sporting events. In addition, student-athletes, coaches and staff of the Cheyney University Athletic Department may not solicit or accept any wager on any intercollegiate or professional athletics contest.

Alumni Organizations

Prospective student-athletes may attend luncheons or dinners in their immediate locale that are sponsored by bona fide alumni organizations of an institution. These alumni organizations must meet specific criteria to be considered as such. Please check with Cheyney University's Director of Compliance for more specific information.

Basic Rules to Remember

  • Do not do anything for a prospective student-athlete or an enrolled student-athlete without specific permission from Cheyney University's athletic department to avoid violations of the extra benefit regulations.
  • Only coaches and athletic department staff members may be involved in the recruiting process. Neither alumni, friends of Cheyney University, nor other athletics representatives who are not employed by
  • Cheyney University may contact a prospect (or his/her family or guardian) via written correspondence, telephone, or in-person (either on or off campus) for the purpose of soliciting their participation in the
  • Cheyney University athletic program.
  • A prospective student-athlete remains a prospective student-athlete until he/she enrolls (e.g., begins classes) full-time at an institution or he/she begins official team practice immediately prior to the start of classes. Even if the prospect signs a Letter of Intent or financial aid agreement to attend an institution, he/she remains a prospect until one of the above occurs.
  • An enrolled student-athlete risks losing his/her athletics eligibility if he/she accepts any benefit based on his/her status as a athlete or because of his/her athletic skill, or a benefit not generally afforded to other students.
  • NCAA rules applicable to enrolled student-athletes are not only applicable-during the academic year, but they are also applicable during the summer months. Enrolled student-athletes are bound by NCAA rules until the end of the academic year in which their athletics eligibility is exhausted.