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2019 Convention legislation: Division III

Delegates to consider new football preseason structure, mandatory student-athlete graduation rate reporting

Division III members will take part in a vital vote that could reshape the composition of the NCAA Board of Governors — and will weigh in on six proposals (and one amendment) relevant to Division III — at the 2019 NCAA Convention next week in Orlando, Florida.

Division III delegates will join their counterparts in Divisions I and II during a special Association-wide business session at 5:45 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24, in the Orlando World Center Marriott. There, members from all three divisions will decide whether to add five independent members to the NCAA Board of Governors, per a recommendation from the Commission on College Basketball.

At 8 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, Division III delegates will gather to vote on their slate of proposals, which include legislation that, if adopted, would establish a new preseason start date in football, make student-athlete graduation rate reporting mandatory and deregulate some current restrictions on social media contact between athletics staff and potential student-athletes, among other changes.

The Division III Issues Forum will take place at 8 a.m. Friday, Jan. 25. There, members will have an opportunity to review and offer feedback on results from the recent Division III membership survey, with a particular focus on enrollment management and health and safety. Additionally, educational sessions on sexual violence prevention, fundraising, and the logistics involved in adding and dropping sports will be held Thursday, Jan. 24.

Information regarding Division III events at the 2019 Convention is available here.

Proposal Sponsor Division III committee position What would it change?
BOG-2019-1 NCAA Board of Governors Presidents Council: Support
SAAC: Support
• Add five independent voting members to the Board of Governors, increasing its size from 20 to 25.
• Define an independent member.
• Limit independent members to no more than two three-year terms.
• The Board of Governors would solicit nominations to fill vacancies and would serve as the final authority for the selection of independent members.
2019-2: Establish new football start date Presidents Council (Management Council; Playing and Practice Seasons Subcommittee) SAAC: Support • Establish first permissible practice date 23 days before an institution’s first contest.
• Prohibit physical athletically related activity one day each week of the preseason after five-day acclimatization period.
2019-2-1: Establish new football start date (amendment relevant to Thursday contests) Presidents Council (Management Council) SAAC: Support • Establish that the first permissible practice date for an institution that conducts its first contest on the Thursday of the opening weekend is 23 days before the following Friday.
2019-3: Establish three-day acclimatization period in field hockey and soccer City University of New York Athletic Conference; New Jersey Athletic Conference Presidents Council: Oppose
Management Council: Oppose
SAAC: Oppose
• Add three additional days to preseason practice period.
• Require first three days of the preseason practice period to be used for acclimatization.
• On every preseason practice day after acclimatization, limit teams to two practices (of no more than six combined hours, with at least three hours of rest between practices).
2019-4: Mandatory student-athlete graduation rate reporting Presidents Council (Management Council; Diversity and Inclusion Working Group) SAAC: Support • Require institutions to submit annual student-athlete graduation rate data.
2019-5: Permit pre-enrollment educational expenses Management Council (Interpretations and Legislation Committee) SAAC: Support • Permit prospective student-athletes to receive educational expenses before college from any individual or entity other than an agent, professional sports team or representative of an institution’s athletics interests.
• Those funds must have been dispersed directly through the recipient’s educational institution (e.g., high school or prep school).
2019-6: Expand exemption regarding experiential learning requirement Management Council (Interpretations and Legislation Committee) SAAC: Support • Apply exception to the full-time enrollment requirement for student-athletes in their final term who are carrying all courses needed to complete their degree, but have a pending experiential learning requirement (e.g., internship for course credit).
2019-7: Deregulate social media restrictions Management Council (Interpretations and Legislation Committee) SAAC: Support • Permit athletics department staff to connect with (e.g., friend, follow) prospective student-athletes via social media.
• Permit athletics department staff to take actions that indicate approval (e.g., “like,” “favorite”) regarding content prospective student-athletes produce on social media platforms.