On August 12, 2011, the NCAA Division I Legislative Review and Interpretations Committee issued an official interpretation concerning coaches’ attendance at international junior competition. The committee confirmed that “the legislation permitting coaches to attend elite international events (e.g., Olympic Games, World Championships) outside of a contact or evaluation period applies only to the events specified in the legislation and does not extend to junior level competition (e.g., Youth Olympic Games, Junior World Championships, U19 World University Games) that may be associated with the specified events.” The interpretation references NCAA Division I Bylaw 22.214.171.124 (coaches’ attendance at elite international events):
“Coaching staff members may attend Olympic, Pan American, World Championships, World Cup or World University Games competition that occurs outside the permissible contact and evaluation periods. However, attendance at qualifying competition for such events, including tryouts, remains subject to the applicable recruiting calendars.”
In light of this interpretation, the Michael L. Buckner Law Firm recommends institutions’ athletics compliance offices: a) review policies and procedures regarding a coach’s attendance at athletic competitions that occur outside the permissible contact and evaluation periods; b) include the interpretation in the next scheduled rules-education session for the athletics staff; and c) perform year-round monitoring of each program’s recruiting calendars and spot-checks when appropriate.