A few months ago, the ITA was invited to participate in a conference call with some key NCAA staff to discuss a number of important tennis-related issues.
 
This call took place on April 12th, with the ITA represented by ITA coaches from Divisions I, II & III, and members of our ITA Staff, and the NCAA by staff members from several key departments. The conference lasted for several hours, with the NCAA providing a thorough overview of current NCAA legislation and Student-Athlete Reinstatement procedures and policies, and the ITA coaches articulating a variety of concerns involving amateurism issues, including a discussion of the ITA Amateur Reimbursement Form. 
  
We have pasted below the key legislative points that were discussed during our conference call.  Additionally, the NCAA has asked us to let you know that specific information may be found on the NCAA website (on the Student-Athlete Reinstatement web pages --with  examples of how the SAR policies are triggered, as well as the SAR directives/consequences. This direct link (which you may need to copy and paste into the address bar) is:
http://www1.ncaa.org/membership/enforcement/s-a_reinstatement/guidelines.htm
 
We will be discussing some of these issues at our upcoming ITA
Division I Coaches Annex meetings held at the NCAA Championships in Athens and College Station. At the same time, we are interested in getting feedback -- about these matters, as well as any additional concerns that relate to NCAA legislation and enforcement --  from all of our membership, including coaches  who may  not be able to attend these Annex meetings.
 
We are planning to have a follow up conference call with the NCAA staff early next month, at which time we will share with the NCAA the suggestions that we have received from our Division I membership, both at the Annex meetings and via email correspondence.
 
We look forward to hearing from you, either in person at the ITA meetings or via email.

Key Points Discussed:
 
1. Division I:  an overview of NCAA amateurism legislation.  Specifically:
(1)   Bylaw 12.2.3.2:  Competition with professionals.  This rule states that an individual is ineligible for NCAA competition if they have competed on a team that is considered professional under NCAA Bylaw 12.02.4. 
(2)   Bylaw 12.02.4:  A professional team is one that either a) calls itself professional or b) provides any player on the team above actual and necessary expenses. 
(3)   Bylaw 12.1.1 (d) and 12.1.1.5 Payment based on performance/ Prize money.  This bylaw states that subsequent to collegiate enrollment, a student-athlete is ineligible for NCAA competition if the student-athlete accepts payment based on place finish for their performance in an event. 
 
2. Overview of student-athlete reinstatement penalties and process for Division I and II.  The NCAA staff explained the SAR directives for violations of amateurism legislation.  It was explained that the directives are based on enrollment date at any institution.  Therefore, there is potential for two athletes to have competed on the same team or during the same tournament and have different SAR conditions because they enrolled at different times.  The NCAA provided the following directives:
(1) Acceptance of prize money:  Per the Management Councilís directive, any individual who initially enrolls on or after August 1, 2002 and accepts prize money above actual/necessary expenses will be deemed permanently ineligible.
(2) Competition with professionals:  If a student-athlete competes on a team that is considered professional subsequent to initial collegiate enrollment, the student-athlete will be deemed permanently ineligible.  Prior to initial collegiate enrollment, if an individual competes on a team that is considered professional, the student-athlete is withheld on a 1-for-1 basis (withheld for one NCAA contest for every professional contest the individual competed in), not to exceed a season.
(3) If an individual enrolled prior to August 1, 2002, the student-athlete reinstatement condition is significantly less.