Athletics Institutional Control and Responsibility Policy

Responsible Office Athletics

It is incumbent upon each NCAA member institution to control its intercollegiate athletics program in compliance with the rules and regulations of the Association. This includes responsibility for the actions of its staff members and for the actions of any other individual or organization engaged in activities promoting the athletics interests of the institution.

Definitions You Should Know

Prospective Student-Athlete (PSA). A prospective student-athlete is anyone who has started classes for the ninth grade. A prospect does not have to be recruited or involved in athletics. A student at a two- or four-year college becomes a prospect as soon as permission to contact has been granted. All recruiting rules apply until the prospect reports for team practice or attends classes as a full-time student, whichever comes first.

Enrolled Student-Athlete (ESA). A student-athlete is anyone who is on the squad list for a varsity sport at the institution. This includes students who are medically disqualified from participation but still receive an athletic scholarship, and those who may have exhausted eligibility, but are still enrolled at the institution.

Recruitment is any solicitation of a prospect or a prospect’s parent/guardian by a representative of athletics interests for the purpose of securing enrollment and/or participation in athletics at BU. Recruiting activities include any correspondence, email, faxes, telephone and in-person contact on, or off campus. These regulations are very specific, and only certain specified institutional staff members are permitted to recruit.

Extra Benefit. Receipt of an extra benefit will affect the eligibility of a PSA or ESA. A prospective or enrolled student athlete may accept financial assistance, gifts or benefits only from a family member, or as specifically permitted by NCAA legislation.

Exceptions are sometimes allowed if a pre-established relationship exists but not if the relationship exists solely due to athletics participation.

An extra benefit is any gift or arrangement provided to a PSA, an ESA, or his relative or friend that is not expressly permitted. Extra benefits would include cash, loans, transportation, housing, meals, clothing, entertainment, and any kind of preferential treatment (reduced rates, preferred seating, restricted parking, event tickets) not available to the general public.

Representative of Athletics Interests. An individual is a representative of athletics interests if she or he:

  • Has been a member of any organization promoting BU athletics;
  • Has made a donation of money, gifts, or services to any BU athletics fund;
  • Has helped to arrange employment for prospective or current student athletes;
  • Has been involved in promoting BU athletes in any way;
  • Has been a member of a varsity team at BU; or
  • Is the parent or guardian of a current or former BU student-athlete.

Once you become a Representative of Athletics Interests (a status you retain forever) you are bound by NCAA, Patriot League Conference, other affiliated conferences, and Boston University rules. Boston University is responsible for your actions.

Do’s and Don’ts for Representatives of Athletics Interests

Do for a Prospective Student-Athlete (PSA):

  • Continue to have contact with an established family friend or neighbor who may be a prospect, as long as it is not for recruiting purposes and is not initiated by a member of the BU athletics department.
  • Bring outstanding prospects to the attention of BU coaches.
  • Assist a PSA who has signed a National Letter of Intent with employment the summer prior to enrollment. The Athletics Compliance Office must approve of this in advance.

Do for an Enrolled Student-Athlete (ESA):

  • Have contact with the ESA on campus.
  • Invite an ESA or team for a home meal and provide transportation to the event. The meal may be catered but should be limited to infrequent or special holidays.
  • Invite an entire team for a meal when they are visiting a city away from home in conjunction with a competition. Only when the team is on the road is it permissible to provide this meal in a restaurant.
  • Assist an ESA with summer or post-grad employment.
  • Contribute to any of the athletic or other support groups at BU.


  • Provide a PSA, ESA or their relatives or friends with an extra benefit of any kind.
  • Engage in any recruitment on or off campus.
  • Have any on-campus contact with a PSA other than an exchange of greeting.
  • Contact a high school coach or administrator in an attempt to evaluate a PSA.
  • Provide or co-sign a loan for a PSA or ESA.
  • Provide or arrange employment for an ESA before completion of the senior year of high school.
  • Provide or arrange employment for an ESA without first receiving written permission from the Athletics Compliance Office.
  • Provide employment for a PSA or ESA at a salary or benefits different than for any other individual doing the same job.