WHO IS A REPRESENTATIVE OF ATHLETICS INTEREST (BOOSTER)?

A representative of the institution’s athletics interests (a.k.a., booster) is an individual, independent agency, corporate entity or other organization who is known (or should be known) by a member of the institution's executive or athletics administration to:

  • Have participated in or to be a member of an agency or organization promoting the institution’s intercollegiate athletics program;

  • Have made financial contributions to the athletics department or to an athletics booster organization of that institution;

  • Be assisting or to have been requested (by the athletics department) to assist in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes;

  • Be assisting or to have assisted in providing benefits to enrolled student-athletes or their families or provided/arranged employment for a prospective student-athlete; or

  • Have been involved otherwise in promoting the institution’s athletics program. Once an individual, independent agency, corporate entity or other organization is identified as a a representative of an institution’s athletics interests, that identity is retained indefinitely.

WHO IS A PROSPECTIVE STUDENT-ATHLETE (PROSPECT)?

HIGH SCHOOL PROSPECT

A prospective student-athlete (prospect) is defined by the NCAA as any person who has begun classes for the ninth (9th) grade. In addition, a student who has not yet started classes for the ninth grade becomes a prospect if an institution provides that individual (or the individual’s relatives or friends) any financial assistance or other benefits that the institution does not provide to prospective student-athletes generally.

POST HIGH SCHOOL PROSPECT

The rules regarding prospective student-athletes also apply to student-athletes at junior colleges, preparatory schools, and two and four-year universities who are considering transferring to the University of Iowa to compete in athletics. A prospect remains a prospect until she/he reports for the first day of classes for a regular term or participates in regular practice or competition prior to the beginning of any term.

BOOSTERS AND PROSPECTIVE STUDENT-ATHLETS

BOOSTERS MAY NOT:

  • Telephone, write or make in-person contact with a prospect (or a member of the prospect’s family) for the purpose of encouraging his/her participation in intercollegiate athletics at the University of Iowa;

  • Make arrangements, directly or indirectly, for a prospect, the prospect’s relatives or friends to receive money, financial aid of any kind, gifts, special discounts for goods or services or the use of an automobile;

  • Provide transportation to prospects, including transportation to visit campus or to attend athletics events;

  • Contact a prospect’s coach, principal or guidance counselor for the purpose of evaluating the prospect (including picking up films or transcripts);

  • Provide free or reduced-cost tickets to any Iowa athletics events (home or away) to prospects, their friends or relatives;

  • Pay or offer to pay a prospect’s registration fees for summer sports camps; or

  • Entertain a high school, prep school or two-year college coach in any way.

BOOSTERS MAY:

  • Attend high school, prep school and two-year college athletics events that they would normally;

  • Speak to a prospective student-athlete via telephone ONLY if the prospect initiates the conversation and the call is not for recruiting purposes. Any questions regarding the University of Iowa’s athletics program must be referred to a member of the athletics department staff;

  • Continue existing friendships with the families of prospects without encouraging the prospect to participate in intercollegiate athletics at the University of Iowa;

  • Call the University of Iowa Compliance Office with questions.

BOOSTER CLUB/ALUMNI EVENTS

Prospects may be invited to booster club/alumni events only if the invitation is not based on their status as an athlete.

If an athletics department staff member is invited to speak at a booster club/alumni event, please let her/him know if prospects will be in attendance. There are certain time periods when coaches are prohibited from having off-campus contact with a prospect.

Boosters are not permitted to bring children or any other guests to I-Club, Iowa Alumni Association or University of Iowa Foundation events if they are considered prospects.

BOOSTERS AND CURRENTLY ENROLLED STUDENT-ATHLETES

BOOSTERS MAY NOT:

  • Provide extra benefits to a student-athlete or his/her family (ex. cash, loans, gifts, discounts, use of a vehicle, etc.)

  • Use the name or picture of a student-athlete to advertise or promote a commercial product or service

  • Provide rewards for athletic performance

  • Provide an honorarium to a student for a speaking engagement

BOOSTERS MAY:

  • Provide an occasional meal to a student-athlete or team. The meal may take place in a booster’s home, as long as it is in the Iowa City vicinity. Details concerning the meal must be approved by the Compliance office PRIOR to the meal.

  • Employ a student-athlete. Student-athletes may only be compensated at the going rate for the worked performed. Employment of student-athletes must be approved by the Compliance Office PRIOR to the start of employment.

AUTOGRAPH POLICY

GUIDELINES FOR PERSONAL AND CHARITABLE REQUESTS

Policies established by the NCAA with respect to amateurism and student-athlete recruitment regulate much of what the University of Iowa’s Department of Intercollegiate Athletics can and cannot do with respect to fulfilling requests for autographs of its coaches and current student-athletes. The UI Department of Intercollegiate Athletics receives many requests from the public regarding autographed memorabilia (e.g., balls, helmets, posters) with student-athletes' and coaches' signatures. Due to high demand and volume, we generally do not furnish the item to be autographed and it is difficult for many of our coaches to personalize items during their respective playing seasons. Please consider these facts when making a request. To assist fans of the Iowa Hawkeyes desiring autographs of coaches and student-athletes, the Department will routinely schedule special events such as Fan Days and post-game autograph sessions. We have also created the following to provide assistance to friends of the University of Iowa and fans of our intercollegiate athletics program interested in securing an autograph.

IMPERMISSIBLE REQUESTS

  • High School - An item can not directly or indirectly benefit a high school (student, student-athlete, coach, staff, facilities, activity, etc.).

  • Scholarship or School Foundations - An item cannot directly or indirectly benefit a fund that awards scholarships to high school-aged individuals.

  • Fundraising Events / Auctions - An item cannot directly or indirectly benefit a high school or a high school student. Requesting Autographs of Current Student-Athletes Amateurism rules regulate the manner in which a student-athlete’s name, picture or likeness may be used. The UI generally does not allow current student-athletes to provide autographs except at UI sanctioned events (e.g., Fan Day, post-game autograph sessions).

CONSEQUENCES FOR VIOLATING NCAA RULES

The moment a student-athlete becomes a prospect, your status as a booster subjects you to all NCAA regulations. The NCAA mandates your compliance with the strict guidelines so as not to jeopardize a prospective or currently enrolled student-athlete’s eligibility, or the integrity of the University of Iowa's Athletics Department.

CONSEQUENCES FOR STUDENT-ATHLETES

If a student-athlete accepts any benefit based on his/her special consideration as an athlete, the student-athlete will lose all eligibility for intercollegiate athletics participation.

CONSEQUENCES FOR BOOSTERS

NCAA rules require institutions to notify boosters that any benefit or privilege provided to the booster relating to the institution’s athletics program, including season tickets, may be withheld if a booster is found to be in violation of any NCAA rule or regulation. In certain cases, penalties have included both the disassociation of boosters from the institution and the loss of season ticket privileges.