The term “student-athlete reinstatement” describes the process used to restore the eligibility of a student-athlete involved in an NCAA rules violation.
If an institution determines that a student-athlete was involved in a violation that affects eligibility, it must declare that student-athlete ineligible. At that point, the institution must investigate, gather facts and submit a reinstatement request to the NCAA national office staff.
During the reinstatement process, specially trained NCAA staff members review each case on its own merits and facts. The staff members then provide an initial decision based on several factors including nature and seriousness of violation; any impermissible benefits received by the student-athlete; the student-athlete’s level of responsibility; mitigating factors presented by the institution; applicable guidelines; and relevant case precedent. Reinstatement decisions are independent of the NCAA enforcement process and are made once the facts of the student-athlete’s involvement are determined. Most cases are resolved quickly. In fact, many likely conclude before an Enforcement investigation concludes
The reinstatement decision results in one of three possible outcomes: reinstated, reinstated with conditions or not reinstated.
If the institution disagrees with the NCAA staff’s decision, it can appeal to the NCAA Committee on Student-Athlete Reinstatement for the applicable division. The committee is composed of representatives from NCAA member institutions and conferences. The committee can reduce or remove the conditions the staff has imposed, but they cannot increase them.