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Education, High-School Sports

NJSIAA Opens Investigation Into Alleged Recruiting Violations

On January 23, 2012, the New Jersey High School Athletic Association announced it has launched an investigation regarding claims that the North Bergen High School Football program recruited at least two student-athletes. The investigation began after the New Jersey Star-Ledger reported a story in which the student-athletes stated they were recruited to North Bergen to play football and lived in apartments rented from the program’s head football coach, Vincent Ascolese. The student-athletes stated they were convinced to attend North Bergen because of the exposure they would receive from collegiate recruiters. Although these allegations have been denied by the head football coach, North Bergen is considering appointing legal counsel to assist the Board of Education in the handling of this matter.

The full article can be found here.

The Michael L. Buckner Law Firm recommends scholastic institutions enhance their rules-compliance programs by implementing lessons learned from this alleged rule violation, including:

  • Develop and implement a comprehensive rules-education program on your high school athletic association’s legislation to instruct boosters, student-athletes, parents, coaches, all athletics department personnel and all institution departments who interface with athletics;
  • Enhance monitoring for transfer student-athletes by developing internal policies and procedures;
  • Conduct a regular internal audit of the athletics compliance program and rules education process and compliance program; and
  • Conduct a regular external audit of the athletics compliance program and rules education process and compliance program.

In addition, the Michael L. Buckner Law Firm is excited to announce the launch of High-School Sports Best Practices Alert, which is a complimentary value-added electronic newsletter resource for secondary school administrators and parents of student-athletes. The newsletter will include at least one article or feature containing best practices, strategies and methodologies to enhance a school’s compliance with state athletic association regulations. For further information on subscribing to this newsletter, please contact Justin Sievert at jsievert@michaelbucknerlaw.com.


About Justin P. Sievert, Esquire

Bar Admissions (North Carolina, Florida and Tennessee) Practice Area (College Sports Law)


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