With the advent of the internet age and its chat rooms, message boards and email, the NCAA has expanded its rules to include those new technologies when it comes to boosters of a university's athletics. Here are a few simple rules that apply to boosters. Some pertain to the internet. All are rules to live by.
Boosters are not permitted to make phone calls to prospects (recruits) or their relatives. If a prospect calls a booster, the conversation cannot be for recruiting purposes and any questions about the athletics program at Mississippi State must be directed to the coaching staff.
Boosters cannot write, email, page, text message or instant message a prospect to encourage him/her to attend Mississippi State.
Boosters may attend a prospect's contest on their own initiative, but may not have any contact with the prospect.
Boosters may not contact a prospect or his/her coach, principal or counselor to evaluate the prospect and may not visit a prospect's educational institution to pick up film/videotape or transcripts pertaining to the evaluation of the prospect.
Boosters may not contact a prospect to congratulate him/her on signing a National Letter of Intent to attend Mississippi State.
Boosters may not bring prospects to Bulldog Club functions or alumni chapter meetings.
Boosters may not have contact at any time with a prospect or his/her parents when the prospect is on the Mississippi State campus for an official or an unofficial visit, be it in the locker room after a game, at a tailgate party or at an off-campus location.
Boosters may not provide prospects or student-athletes with any goods or services, including any type of special discount or payment arrangement (e.g., cosigning a loan, free or reduced-cost housing).
Boosters cannot provide student-athletes with any sort of extra benefit, which refers to any special arrangement to provide a student-athlete or his/her family with a benefit available to the general student population.
Boosters can employ Mississippi State student-athletes during both the academic year and summer. Prospects can only be employed during the summer prior to enrollment at Mississippi State and must have graduated from high school or junior college before such employment may begin. Current student-athletes and prospects must be paid for work actually performed and at a rate commensurate with the going rate in that locale. All employment must be approved and documented by the compliance office.
If you have any questions, please contact the Mississippi State University Office of Athletic Compliance at 662-325-0245 or email email@example.com.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher of Dawgs Bite: Powered by GenesPage.com, the source for Mississippi State sports on TheInsiders.com sports network. You can contact him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.