Summary of NCAA Regulations - NCAA Division III PDF
Purpose: To summarize NCAA regulations regarding eligibility of student-athletes to compete.
DISCLAIMER: THE SUMMARY OF NCAA REGULATIONS DOES NOT INCLUDE ALL NCAA DIVISION III BYLAWS. FOR A COMPLETE LIST, GO TO WWW.NCAA.ORG. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR KNOWING AND UNDERSTANDING THE APPLICATION OF ALL BYLAWS RELATED TO YOUR ELIGIBILITY TO COMPETE. CONTACT YOUR INSTITUTION’S COMPLIANCE OFFICE OR THE NCAA IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS.
This summary of NCAA regulations contains information about your eligibility to compete in intercollegiate athletics.
This summary has two parts:
- Part I is for all student-athletes.
- Part II is for new student-athletes only (those signing the Student-Athlete Statement for the first time).
If you have questions, ask your director of athletics (or his or her official designee) or refer to the 2016-17 NCAA Division III Manual. These forms are available via the NCAA website (www.ncaa.org/compliance?division=d3) The references in brackets after each summarized regulation show you where to find the regulation in the Division III Manual.
Part I: For All Student-Athletes
This part of the summary discusses ethical conduct, amateurism, financial aid, academic standards and other regulations concerning your eligibility for intercollegiate competition.
1. Ethical Conduct - All Sports.
- You must act with honesty and sportsmanship at all times so that you represent the honor and dignity of fair play and the generally recognized high standards associated with wholesome competitive sports. [NCAA Bylaw 10.01.1]
- You have engaged in unethical conduct if you refuse to furnish information relevant to an investigation of a possible violation of an NCAA regulation when requested to do so by the NCAA or your institution. [Bylaw 10.1-(a)]
- You are not eligible to compete if you knowingly provide information to individuals involved in organized gambling activities concerning intercollegiate athletics competition, solicit a bet on any intercollegiate team, accept a bet on any team representing the school or solicit or accept a bet on any intercollegiate competition for any item (e.g., cash, shirt, dinner) that has tangible value. [Bylaw 10.3]
- You are not eligible to compete if you knowingly participate in any gambling activity that involves intercollegiate or professional athletics, through a bookmaker, a parlay card or any other method employed by organized gambling. [Bylaw 10.3]
- You are not eligible to compete if you have shown dishonesty in evading or violating NCAA regulations. [Bylaw 14.01.3.3]
2. Amateurism - All Sports.
- You are not eligible for participation in a sport if after full-time collegiate enrollment you have ever:
- Taken pay, or the promise of pay, for competing in that sport;
- Agreed (orally or in writing) to compete in professional athletics in that sport;
- Competed on any professional athletics team (as defined by the NCAA) in that sport; or
- Used your athletics skill for pay in any form in that sport. (Prior to collegiate enrollment, an individual may accept prize money based only on his or her place finish or performance from the sponsor of an open athletics event, the United States Olympic Committee or the appropriate national governing body and actual and necessary expenses associated with the individual’s practice and competition on a professional team.) [Bylaws l2.1.3. and 12.1.5]
- You are not eligible in a sport if you ever have accepted money, transportation or other benefits from an agent or agreed to have an agent market your athletics ability or reputation in that sport. [Bylaw 12.3.1]
- You are not eligible in any sport if, after you become a student-athlete, you accept any pay for promoting a commercial product or service or allow your name or picture to be used for promoting a commercial product or service, unless:
- The individual became involved in such activities for reasons independent of athletics ability;
- No reference is made in these activities to the individual’s involvement in intercollegiate athletics; and
- The individual’s remuneration under such circumstances is at a rate commensurate with the individual’s skill and experience as a model or performer and is not based in any way on the individual’s athletics ability or reputation. [Bylaw 18.104.22.168]
- You are not eligible in any sport if, because of your athletics ability, you were paid for work you did not perform, or were paid at a rate higher than the going rate. [Bylaw 12.4.1]
3. Delayed Collegiate Enrollment.
- The following rules are applicable to all Division III student-athletes first entering a collegiate institution on or after August 1, 2014:
If you did not enroll in college as a full-time student by the next opportunity after a one calendar-year period following the graduation of your high school class or if you discontinued full-time high school enrollment and you participated in any of the activities listed below, you have used a season of intercollegiate competition for each calendar year or sport season in which you participated in such activities. [Bylaw 22.214.171.124]
Activities Constituting Use of a Season
- Any team competition or training in which pay in any form is provided to any of the participants above actual and necessary expenses;
- Any individual competition or training in which the individual accepts pay in any form based on his or her place finish or any competition or training in which the individual accepts pay in any form above actual and necessary expenses;
- Any competition pursuant to the signing of a contract for athletics participation or entering a professional draft; or
- Any competition funded by a representative of an institution’s athletics interest that is not open to all participants. [Bylaw 126.96.36.199.2]
If you have used a season(s) of participation according to the regulations above, you must also fulfill an academic year in residence prior to being eligible to represent your school in intercollegiate competition. [Bylaw 188.8.131.52.1]
4. Competition Exceptions (for delayed collegiate enrollment).
- If you participated in organized competition while enrolled in a postgraduate college preparatory school during the initial year of enrollment, you did not use a season of competition. In addition, a maximum one-time one-year exception is applicable for participation in the Olympic Games tryouts and competition, and other specified national and international competition. [Bylaw 184.108.40.206.2.1]
5. Seasons of Participation - All Sports.
- A student-athlete must count a season of participation when he or she practices or competes during or after the first contest following the student-athlete’s initial participation at that school. [Bylaw 220.127.116.11]
- A season of participation shall not be counted when a student-athlete participates in a preseason scrimmage or preseason exhibition conducted prior to the first contest in the traditional segment following the student-athlete’s initial participation at that school, or when a student-athlete participates in the one date of competition during the nontraditional segment in baseball, field hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball and volleyball. [Bylaw 18.104.22.168.1]
- A season of participation shall not be counted when a student-athlete practices in the nontraditional sports segment. [Bylaw 22.214.171.124]
6. Financial Aid - All Sports.
- You are not eligible if you receive financial aid other than the nonathletics financial aid that your school distributes. However, it is permissible to receive:
- Money from anyone on whom you are naturally or legally dependent. [Bylaw 126.96.36.199]
- Financial aid that has been awarded to you on a basis other than athletics leadership, ability, participation or performance. [Bylaw 188.8.131.52]
- Financial aid from an entity outside your school that meets the requirements specified in the Division III Manual. [Bylaw 184.108.40.206]
- You must report to your school any financial aid that you receive from a source other than your school. However, you do not need to report financial aid received from anyone on whom you are naturally or legally dependent. [Bylaw 220.127.116.11]
7. Academic Standards - All Sports.
- Eligibility for Practice.
- You are eligible to practice if you are enrolled in a minimum full-time program of studies leading to a baccalaureate or equivalent degree as defined by the regulations of your school. If at any point you drop below full time you are unable to practice. [Bylaw 18.104.22.168]
- You are eligible to practice during the official vacation period immediately before initial enrollment, provided you have been accepted by your school for enrollment in a regular, full-time program of studies at the time of your initial participation, you are no longer enrolled at your previous school and you are eligible under all school and NCAA requirements. [Bylaw 22.214.171.124.6.1]
- You also are eligible to practice while enrolled in less than a minimum full-time program of studies if you are enrolled in the final semester or quarter of a baccalaureate program and your school certifies that you are carrying (for credit) the courses necessary to complete your degree requirements. [Bylaw 126.96.36.199.6.3]
- Eligibility for Competition.
- To be eligible to compete, you must:
- Have been admitted as a regularly enrolled, degree-seeking student according to the published entrance requirements of your school;
- Be in good academic standing according to the standards of your school; and
- Be enrolled in at least a minimum full-time program of studies leading to baccalaureate or the equivalent (not less than 12-semester or quarter hours) and maintain satisfactory progress toward that degree, be enrolled in a full-time graduate or professional degree program (as defined by the school for all graduate students) or be enrolled and seeking a second baccalaureate degree at your school. [Bylaws 14.01.2, 188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206.6.4]
- If you are enrolled in less than a full-time program, you are eligible to compete only if you are enrolled in the last term of your baccalaureate or graduate degree program and are carrying credits necessary to finish your degree requirements. [Bylaw 220.127.116.11.6.3]
- You are eligible to compete during the official vacation period immediately before initial enrollment, provided you have been accepted by your school for enrollment in a regular, full-time program of studies and at the time of your initial participation, you are no longer enrolled in your previous educational institution and you are eligible under all institutional and NCAA requirements. [Bylaw 18.104.22.168.6.1]
- If you are a returning student, you are eligible to compete between terms, provided you have been registered for the required minimum full-time load at the conclusion of the term immediately before the date of competition, or if you are either continuing enrollment or beginning enrollment, provided you have been accepted for enrollment as a regular full-time student for the regular term immediately following the date of competition. [Bylaw 22.214.171.124.6.2]
8. Other Rules Concerning Eligibility - All Sports.
- You are not eligible to participate in more than four seasons of intercollegiate participation. [Bylaw 14.2]
- You are not eligible after 10 semesters or 15 quarters in which you were enrolled at a collegiate institution in at least a minimum full-time program of studies as determined by the school, except for any extensions that have been approved in accordance with NCAA legislation. [Bylaw 14.2.2]
- You are eligible if you are seeking a second baccalaureate or equivalent degree or you are enrolled in a graduate or professional school provided you received your undergraduate degree from the same school, you have seasons of participation remaining and your participation occurs within the applicable 10 semesters or 15 quarters. You are also eligible for championships that occur within 60 days of the date you complete the requirements for your degree. [Bylaws 14.1.9 and 126.96.36.199.6.3.1]
- You are not eligible in your sport for the rest of your season if, after enrollment in college and during any year in which you were a member of an intercollegiate team, you competed as a member of any outside team in any noncollegiate, amateur competition in the sport during your college team’s playing season. Competing in the Olympic Games, tryouts and competition and other specified national and international competition is permitted. [Bylaws 14.7.1 and 14.7.3]
9. Transfer Students Only.
- You are considered a transfer student if:
- You were officially registered and enrolled in a minimum, full-time program of studies in any quarter or semester of an academic year, as certified by the registrar or admissions office and attended class; or
You reported for a regular squad practice (including practice or conditioning activities that occurred before certification), announced by the institution through any member of its athletics department staff, before the beginning of any quarter or semester, as certified by the athletics director. [Bylaw 14.5.2]
- If you are a transfer student from a four-year school, you are not eligible during your first academic year in residence unless you meet the provisions of one of the exceptions specified in Bylaws 188.8.131.52.1, 184.108.40.206.2 or 220.127.116.11.3.
- If you are a transfer student from a two-year institution, you are not eligible during your first academic year in residence at your new institution unless you meet the academic and residence requirements specified in Bylaw 18.104.22.168 or the exception specified in Bylaw 22.214.171.124.
- If you wish to correspond with another NCAA institution about your opportunity to transfer, the institution must have permission to contact you before any correspondence may occur.
- To contact another Division III school, you may seek permission from your director of athletics, or you can grant other Division III institutions permission to contact you. To grant another Division III school permission to contact you about a potential transfer (or for you to be able to contact the school), complete the Permission to Contact: Self-Release form that is provided by the NCAA national office. The form and instructions are available on the student-athlete home page of the NCAA website at www.ncaa.org/student-athletes/permission-contact.
- To contact Division I or Division II schools, you must seek permission from your director of athletics.
Part II: For New Student - Athletes Only
This part of the summary contains information about your recruitment, which is governed by Bylaw 13 of the Division III Manual.
- Offers - All Sports.
- You are not eligible if, before you enrolled at your school, any staff member of your institution or any other representative of your school’s athletics interests offered to you, your relatives or your friends any financial aid or other benefits that NCAA rules do not permit.
- During your recruitment, it was permissible for you to be employed in any department outside of intercollegiate athletics provided the employment is arranged through normal institutional employment policies and procedures. [Bylaws 13.2.1 and 126.96.36.199]
- Contacts - All Sports.
- For purposes of this section, contact means “any face-to-face encounter between a prospective student-athlete or the prospective student-athlete’s relatives, guardian(s) or individual of a comparable relationship and an institutional athletics department staff member or athletics representative during which any dialogue occurs in excess of an exchange of a greeting. Any such face-to-face encounter that is prearranged (e.g., positions himself/herself in a location where contact is possible) or that takes place on the grounds of the prospective student-athlete’s educational institution or at the site of organized competition or practice involving the prospective student-athlete or the prospective student-athlete’s high school, preparatory school, two-year college or all-star team shall be considered a contact, regardless of the conversation that occurs.” [Bylaw 13.02.3]
- You are not eligible if any athletics staff member of your school or any other representative of your school’s athletics interests contacted you (as defined above), your relatives or your legal guardians in person off your high school’s campus before you completed your junior year in high school (except for students at military academies). [Bylaw 188.8.131.52]
- Source of Funds - All Sports.
- You are eligible for intercollegiate competition if prior to initial full-time collegiate enrollment, you received normal and reasonable living expenses from an individual with whom you had an established relationship (e.g., high school coach, nonscholastic athletics team coach, family of a teammate), even if the relationship developed as a result of athletics participation, provided:
- The individual is not an agent;
- The individual is not an athletics representative of a particular school involved in recruiting the prospective student-athlete; and
- Such living expenses are consistent with the types of expenses provided by the individual as a part of normal living arrangements (e.g., housing, meals, occasional spending money, use of the family car). [Bylaw 184.108.40.206]
- Sports Camps.
- You are not eligible if, before you enrolled at your school, the school, members of its athletics staff or a representative of its athletics interests gave you free or reduced admission privileges to attend its sports camp or clinic after you had started classes for the ninth grade. [Bylaw 220.127.116.11]
- Visits, Transportation and Entertainment - All Sports.
- You are not eligible under Bylaws 13.5, 13.6 or 13.7 if, before you enrolled at your school, any of the following happened to you:
- Your school paid for you to visit its campus more than once;
- Your one expense-paid visit to the campus lasted longer than 48 hours;
- Your school paid more than the actual round-trip cost by direct route between your home and the campus when you made your one expense-paid visit;
- Your school entertained you, your parents (or guardians) or your spouse outside a 30-mile radius of the campus during your expense-paid visit; or
- Your school entertained you, your parents (or guardians) or your spouse excessively during your expense-paid visit, or entertained your friends or other relatives at any site.
- You are not eligible if your school paid for you to visit its campus before the first day of classes of your senior year in high school. [Bylaw 18.104.22.168.1]
- You are not eligible if, when you were being recruited, staff members of your school or any representatives of its athletics interests paid the transportation costs for your relatives or friends to visit the campus or elsewhere other than the one paid visit. [Bylaw 22.214.171.124]
- You are not eligible if any person, (other than your parents or legal guardians) at his or her own expense, paid for you to visit your school once and did not accompany you on the visit or paid for you to visit more than once. [Bylaw 126.96.36.199]
- You are not eligible if, at any time that you were visiting your school’s campus at your own expense, your school paid for anything more than the following:
- Transportation, when accompanied by a staff member, to see off-campus practice and competition sites and other facilities. [Bylaw 13.5.3]
- A meal at the dining hall of your school or a meal at an off-campus site if all institutional dining halls were closed and the school normally provides similar meals to all visiting prospective students. [Bylaw 188.8.131.52.1]
- Housing at your school that is generally available to all visiting prospective students. [Bylaw 184.108.40.206.2]
- You are not eligible if, when you were being recruited, a staff member of your school’s athletics department spent money, other than what was necessary, for the staff member’s (or representative’s) personal expenses during an off-campus visit with you. [Bylaw 13.14.2]
- Precollege or Postgraduate Expenses - All Sports.
- You are not eligible if your school, or any representative of its athletics interests, offered you money, directly or indirectly, to pay for any part of your educational expenses or other expenses during any period of time before you enrolled at your school. This applies to your postgraduate education as well. [Bylaw 13.15.1]