On January 6, 2012, the academic and membership affairs staff issued an interpretation non-qualifying student-athletes participating in promotional activities. Specifically, the staff confirmed that “a nonqualifier may participate in a promotional activity during his or her first academic year in residence provided the activity does not involve a countable athletically related activity.”
This interpretation referenced NCAA Bylaws 18.104.22.168 (institutional, charitable, education or nonprofit promotions); 22.214.171.124 (nonqualifier); 126.96.36.199.1 (eligibility for aid, practice and competition); 14.3.4 (residence requirement); 188.8.131.52 (charitable, educational or nonprofit activities); staff determination [Reference: 11/08/11, Item No. 1]; and staff interpretation [Reference: 01/03/89, Item No. g] which has been archived.
In light of this interpretation, the Michael L. Buckner Law Firm recommends institutions’ athletics compliance: a) include the interpretation in the next scheduled rules-education session for the athletics staff and coaches; b) review current student-athlete promotional and/or marketing policies and procedures; c) include the interpretation in the next scheduled rules-education session for student-athletes; and d) make appropriate changes to the institution’s student-athlete handbook.