Boosters & Extra Benefits
As a booster, you are subject to various NCAA regulations regarding your interaction with student-athletes. The biggest concern is always the area of granting extra benefits. If you own a retail business, you need to be sure that you are not extending discounts to those student-athletes from UMBC that are not available to your other customers. There was a violation at another Division I institution several years ago that involved a booster who owned a shoe store. Apparently, student-athletes were given the opportunity to purchase shoes at unadvertised discount rates. This violated NCAA Bylaw 16.02.03 Extra Benefits, which stats:
“An extra benefit is any special arrangement by an institutional employee or a representative of the institution’s athletics interests (i.e. booster) to provide a student-athlete or the student-athlete’s relative or friend a benefit not expressly authorized by NCAA legislation. Receipt of a benefit by student-athletes or their relatives or friends is not a violation of NCAA legislation of it is demonstrated that the same benefit is generally available to the institution’s students or their relatives or friends or to a particular segment of the student body (e.g. foreign students, minority students) determined on a basis unrelated to athletics ability.”
To state it simply, if the discount is available to all UMBC students with a current I.D., then there is no extra benefit. It could even be more defined, such as available to only first-year students.
Sometimes, even the smallest thing may be considered an extra benefit. For example, giving each member of a team a personalized Christmas ornament would be an extra benefit, unless you are also giving similar items to other students who are not student-athletes. It may seem small, but rules are rules.
You are a booster, or by NCAA definition, a “Representative of Athletics Interest” if:
Once a booster, always a booster: This is according to NCAA regulations, even if you no longer contribute to the athletics program.
A booster’s role in the recruiting process:
Remember: Your role as a UMBC Retriever Booster is greatly appreciated, as long as everyone plays by the rules.
If you have any questions, please contact Kathy Zerrlaut, Senior Associate Athletic Director/Compliance, at 410-455-2012 or firstname.lastname@example.org.