Committed to change

 

Changes | Working Groups | Timeline | About the Commission

Taking action

The September 2017 announcement of a federal investigation into fraud in college basketball recruiting made it clear the NCAA needed to make significant changes — and do so quickly. In response to the recommendations issued in April from the Commission on College Basketball, the NCAA’s Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors are implementing the following changes:

BASKETBALL

Provide student-athletes more freedom and flexibility to decide about going pro and pay for scholarships for those who want to finish their degree later.

Minimize the leverage of harmful outside influences on high school recruits and college student-athletes.

ENFORCEMENT

Make the NCAA investigations and infractions process more efficient and binding.

Set stronger penalties for schools and individuals who break the rules.

OUTSIDE VOICES

Bring in independent investigators and decision-makers to enforce rules.

Add public voices to the NCAA Board of Governors for fresh perspectives.

 
These changes will promote integrity in the game, strengthen accountability and prioritize the interests of student-athletes over every other factor.”

Read the Full Statement.

CHANGES

Flexibility for going pro and getting a degree

Student-athletes have more freedom and flexibility to decide about going pro or getting a college education, and they can receive financial assistance if they leave school early and wish to return later to finish their degree. Changes include:

  • High school basketball student-athletes can make more frequent campus visits paid for by colleges (referred to as official visits). The visits can begin as soon as the summer before their junior year.
  • College players who request an evaluation from the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee can be represented by an agent starting in April 2019 to help them make informed decisions about going pro. Depending upon future action from the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association, elite high school basketball recruits would have a similar opportunity.
  • Agents must be certified by an NCAA program with standards for behavior and consequences for violations.
  • Student-athletes will be able to participate in the NBA draft and return to school if undrafted, pending future action from the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association. Currently, college athletes who are interested in going pro can declare for the draft and attend the NBA combine, but must withdraw no more than 10 days after the combine to stay eligible.
  • Division I schools will be required to pay for tuition, fees and books for men’s and women’s basketball players who left school and returned later to the same school to earn their degree. The NCAA is establishing a fund for schools who are otherwise unable to provide this aid.
Minimizing harmful outside influences

New rules reduce the leverage of outside influences on high school recruits and college student-athletes. Changes include:

  • Basketball-related events for high school students will be subject to more rigorous certification requirements to ensure transparency in operations and finances. This will help address issues of corruption and help support student-athletes as they make decisions about their future.
  • The recruiting calendar, which creates more restrictions around events not sponsored by high schools, will allow coaches to attend additional high school-sponsored events.
  • Coaches and athletics staff must report athletics-related income from any source outside their school, such as an apparel company.
  • The NCAA is pursuing an agreement with apparel companies on expectations for accountability and transparency regarding their involvement in youth basketball.
 
More efficient, binding enforcement system

New responsibilities and obligations solidify effective and fair enforcement of NCAA rules. Changes include:

  • As a term of employment, school presidents and athletics staff must commit contractually to full cooperation in the investigations and infractions process.
  • People charged with investigating and resolving NCAA cases can accept information established by another administrative body, including a court of law, government agency, accrediting body or a commission authorized by a school. This will save time and resources previously used to confirm information already adjudicated by another group.
  • When schools and NCAA staff agree on the facts of a case, they can work together on a resolution, including appropriate penalties, if any. This change will reduce legal fees and minimize drawn-out adversarial situations. Agreed-upon resolutions must be approved by the NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions.
Stronger accountability, penalties

To deter future violations, coaches and staff have stronger, clearer accountability expectations and face increased penalties if they break the rules. Changes include:

  • University presidents and chancellors will be personally accountable for their athletics program following the rules. Presidents and chancellors join all athletics staff in personally affirming the athletics program meets obligations for monitoring rules compliance, which is required to be eligible for the postseason. Also, schools are required to cooperate fully during NCAA investigations and take appropriate corrective action. Those who break rules face stronger penalties, including longer postseason bans, longer head coach suspensions, increased recruiting restrictions and additional fines.
  • Those who break rules face stronger penalties, including longer postseason bans, longer head coach suspensions, increased recruiting restrictions and additional fines.
Independent investigators and decision-makers

Changes to the investigations and infractions process create independent groups to prevent conflicts of interest. The reforms include:

  • Two independent groups will be appointed to oversee the investigation and resolution of cases defined as “complex.” Examples of complex cases include the possibility of major penalties or alleged violations of core NCAA values, such as prioritizing academics and the well-being of student-athletes; the possibility of major penalties; and adversarial behavior. Multiple parties will be able to request that a case be deemed complex: school representatives, NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions members or NCAA enforcement staff.
  • The first independent group will include both external investigators with no school or conference affiliation and select NCAA enforcement staff. The second group, composed of 15 people with backgrounds in law, higher education or sports and not affiliated with NCAA schools or conferences, will review the findings from the first group, oversee the case hearing and decide penalties, if any.
Adding Public Voices

Public members not affiliated with the NCAA or member schools will join the NCAA Board of Governors to bring fresh perspectives and independent judgment.

  • Pending adoption at the NCAA Convention in January 2019, five independent members will be added to the NCAA Board of Governors, which is responsible for oversight of the entire Association.
  • Each member will be nominated by the Board of Governors Executive Committee, approved by the full board and serve a three-year term, which can be renewed once. The terms of the independent board members are longer than those served by school representatives.

Read More.

Working Groups

The above actions are the result of the eight working groups who addressed recommendations from the independent Commission on College Basketball.

Working Group Rosters.

A LOOK BACK

The NCAA took swift action to implement recommended changes.

  • April 24-25, 2018

    Commission presented recommendations to Board of Governors and other NCAA leaders.

  • April 25, 2018

    Division I Council Coordination Committee approved rosters for working groups and adjunct members of standing committees.

  • June 11-13, 2018

    Division I Council and standing committees met to develop legislation.

  • Aug. 1, 2018

    Division I Council made legislative and policy recommendations to the Division I Board.

  • Aug. 7, 2018

    Board of Governors and DI Board of Directors met jointly to consider Association-wide policy and legislative recommendations.

  • Aug. 8, 2018

    Division I Board of Directors met to take action on DI-specific legislation.