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Written policies on alcohol among ideas

4/13/2004

INDIANAPOLIS -- An NCAA task force on recruiting will recommend colleges be required to develop written policies on alcohol and unsupervised entertainment, along with clear standards for determining who should be held accountable for compliance.

Recommendations by the 18-member task force, formed in February
by NCAA President Myles Brand in the wake of several highly
publicized recruiting scandals, will be presented to the Division I
Management Council on April 20 and reviewed by the Division I Board
of Directors on April 29.

Final recommendations will be considered in July and sent to the
Board of Directors in time to enact new rules before the 2004-05
recruiting season, the NCAA said Tuesday.

The action was prompted in part by allegations made by two women
who contend that Colorado players or recruits raped them at a 2001
party; a third said she was assaulted in a dorm room shortly
afterward. They are suing in federal court, seeking unspecified
damages.

Since 1997, at least eight women have accused Colorado football
players of rape, although no charges have been filed in those
cases.

"While it was noted that alleged illegal conduct is a matter
that should be left to law enforcement officials ... the NCAA also
has a role to ensure that proper national rules and guidelines are
in place to govern athletics recruiting practices, to assess
accountability for failures and to act as a resource to assist in
developing an institutional compliance program," the NCAA
statement said.

Typically, NCAA rules changes can take months or years. Brand,
however, has asked that the recruiting proposals be treated as
"emergency legislation."

The task force recommendations also include a requirement that
hosts for athletes either be members of the teams for which the
prospects are being recruited or others chosen the same way the
college provides hosts to prospective students in general.

The group also urged requiring recruits and hosts to sign a form
agreeing not to engage in inappropriate conduct as defined by the
college.

Among other recommendations that will be given to the Management
Council:

  • Require colleges that provide air transportation to recruits
    to use commercial flights at coach fare with no upgrades.

  • Prohibit schools from using special vehicles, such as cars
    modified with televisions or other features, for recruits.

  • Require recruits and their parents be housed in standard
    lodging that does not include special accessories not available
    generally to all guests, and standard meals comparable to those
    provided to athletes during the academic year.

  • Prohibit institutions from providing personalized jerseys and
    personalized audio or video presentations of recruits; the recruits
    would be allowed to be in the locker room before or after a game
    and stand on the sideline during pregame activities, but could not
    run onto the field with the team during pregame introductions.

    Among other recommendations considered but not supported by the
    task force was one to reduce the number of official visits and
    shorten the 48-hour period for each visit.