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Basketball recruiting rule change effective Friday

By Michelle Brutlag Hosick 

Beginning Friday, Division I men’s basketball coaches will be able to call or text message with recruits who have completed or are finishing up their sophomore year of high school.

The rule change is part of a new model for men’s basketball recruiting that emphasizes relationship-building between college coaches and prospects and hopes to limit the influence of third parties on the recruiting process.

Men's Basketball Recruiting Model


Effective Date

Electronic Communication and Initial Date for Communication

 June 15, 2012

Official Visits – January 1 of Junior Year and Transportation Expenses for Official Visits

 August 1, 2012

Contact in Junior Year in Conjunction With Evaluation

 August 1, 2012

July Evaluation Period


April Evaluation Period


Coaches will be permitted to make unlimited calls and send unlimited text messages with recruits after June 15 following their sophomore year. The deregulation extends to social media, where private messages will be allowed. Public messages continue to be prohibited because of the rule preventing institutions from publicizing their recruiting efforts.

The Division I Leadership Council proposed the changes to the recruiting model after a year of study, and the new model was adopted by the Board of Directors in October 2011. Missouri Athletics Director Mike Alden chairs the Leadership Council.

“The Leadership Council recognized the evolving nature of communication with students as well as the importance of building solid relationships with prospective student-athletes,” Alden said. “It appeared that we had previously regulated ourselves away from that relationship building with these young people, unintentionally allowing third parties greater access than our coaches. 

“Going forward, we felt it important to be proactive establishing a model that allows our coaches greater opportunities to establish solid relationships earlier and more often.  We are looking forward to monitoring the results of these collective efforts.”

The changes were supported by the National Association of Basketball Coaches, which worked closely with the Leadership Council in developing the new rules.

In addition to modified recruiting periods and less stringent contact rules, the changes adopted by the Board include:

  • A start date for official visits beginning January 1 of the junior year, with schools able to pay travel expenses for the prospect and a parent/guardian.
  • Permitting some contact at a prospect’s educational institution during the junior year in conjunction with an evaluation, with some restrictions and requirements.
  • The July period will be limited to three four-day periods beginning Wednesday at 5 p.m. and ending Sunday at 5 p.m.
  • The April period will be limited to certified events that begin after 6 p.m. on Friday and end before 4 p.m. on Sunday.

Implementation for the rules is staggered, but will be fully in place by August 1, 2012.