You are here

Agent Certification

The April 2018 report from the Commission on College Basketball chaired by Condoleezza Rice recommended, and the NCAA adopted, legislation to allow SOME student-athletes to hire NCAA-certified agents so that the student-athletes can receive meaningful assessment of their professional prospects earlier in their journey.  The commission focused solely on men’s basketball (MBB), and it was the commission’s belief that these student-athletes needed earlier professional advice to determine whether it is in their best interests to declare for the NBA draft or whether college basketball offers a superior pathway.

As a result, following the 2018-19 basketball season, NCAA legislation will allow a select few student-athletes to meet with and be represented by an NCAA-certified agent without losing eligibility.  To accomplish this, the NCAA created an agent certification program applicable to MBB agents beginning in August 2019.

Prerequisites

To become an NCAA-certified agent one must:

  1. Have a bachelor's degree and/or be certified by and in good standing with the NBPA;
  2. Have been NBPA certified for at least three consecutive years and be in good-standing;
  3. Maintain professional liability insurance.
  4. Submit application by appropriate deadline.

Application Process

Register Online in the NCAA Agent Certification System (ACS).

  1. Submit Application to NCAA.
    1. Includes disclosing conflicts of interest;
    2. Successful completion of background check;
    3. Payment of nonrefundable application fee.
  2. NCAA Review of Application.
  3. Notification of Eligibility to Take the In-Person Exam.
  4. In-Person Exam.
  5. Pay Certification Fee (annually).
  6. Reapply the following year using the same ACS user account.

For more specific details regarding the application process, see: Application Process Description.

Application

The application will be available annually between midnight August 1 and 11:59 pm September 30 (Eastern time). Late submissions are not accepted.  Failure to apply while the application is available online will require the agent to wait until the application is available the following year.

Since 2019 is the inaugural year for this process, the application was not made available until Monday, August 5 and the deadline has been extended to October 31.

Background Check

During the NCAA application process, the agent will be redirected to the Sterling Volunteers website to provide additional information in order to complete the background check portion of the application.  The agent will need to provide his/her driver's license information, address history for seven years, and information about his/her bachelor’s degree (start and end dates, major, college/university name and location) for the background check to be completed.

The disqualifying criteria for the background check can be accessed here: Background Check Information and Disqualifying Criteria.

Once the background check has been processed, ECAG will evaluate each application in the order they are submitted.  Due to the volume of applications submitted in a very concentrated window of time, an agent should anticipate a minimum of two weeks for ECAG to process an application. 

Fees

The application fee is $250 which includes a full background check and is paid directly to Sterling Volunteers at the conclusion of the application.  The application fee is non-refundable and is required annually.

The certification fee is $1250 and will be paid in the NCAA Agent Certification System.

In-Person Exam

Agents who successfully complete the application and background check requirement will be required to take the in-person exam. There are currently TWO exam dates scheduled:

  1. Wednesday, November 6, and
  2. Tuesday, December 10.

Both exams will be administered at the NCAA National Office in Indianapolis, Indiana, at 1 p.m. Eastern time. An in-person review session will be offered at 11 a.m. that same day with lunch provided in between. Agent must RSVP to ECAG regarding which date he/she will attend.

Review and exam times were selected to avoid the need for an overnight stay for most agents. If needed there are hotels within walking distance and there are multiple Marriott properties directly across the street from the NCAA National Office.

The exam will consist of 50 multiple choice or true/false questions focusing on: (1) NCAA initial and continuing eligibility requirements; (2) NCAA recruiting and related rules; (3) NCAA agent certification rules; (4) amateurism; (5) extra benefits; and (6) financial competency.

The exam is "open book" but electronic devices will not be permitted. Agents must achieve a score of at least 80% to pass the exam. After the exams are graded and ECAG reviews all of the information available, the agent's eligibility to be certified will be determined. The agent will be notified of that decision and those who are eligible will be instructed to log back into the application system, confirm the contact information that will be posted in the directory to be accurate, upload a professional photo, and pay the certification fee. After these steps are completed, the agent will appear on the NCAA directory posted on www.ncaa.org/agent-certification.

Need Help?

Contact Enforcement Certification and Approvals Group (ECAG).