Discussion of NCAA Legislation: Reporting Violations
The CRCA board of directors, on behalf of the membership, has developed the following recommendation for what our members should do if they observe what they think was an NCAA violation by a coach of another NCAA member institution. The board believes that the most appropriate action is for the coach who observed the suspected violation to contact the coach who may have violated the rule and let them know what they saw and why they think it was a violation of NCAA rules.
In some cases there might not have been an NCAA violation at all. As complicated as the rules are, many situations are not quite what they seem at first glance. Discussing the suspected rules violation offers the opportunity to clear up what might simply be a misinterpretation of the situation or a rule. So it saves everybody a lot of time and effort by having the two parties communicate and realize that there was no violation.
In cases where there was a violation, the CRCA strongly urges the person who broke the rules to initiate a self-report through their institution. In some cases where there was a violation the violation was inadvertent. Being people of high integrity (please refer to the portion of the CRCA bylaws that addresses member responsibility), we are certain that the coach who inadvertently committed a violation would want to understand the rule and self-report. In some cases there was a violation that was done on purpose and the coach has simply been caught breaking the rules. Once contacted by the person observing the violation, the offending party should self-report. Certainly even someone who purposefully breaks a rule and is caught doing so would not want to risk that they will be turned in to the NCAA or their institution without self-reporting.
We would like to add some thoughts on the obligation of those coaches who believe that they have observed a violation. People in that situation often feel awkward and uncomfortable about contacting the coach who may have violated an NCAA rule. The board feels that it is imperative for the integrity of our sport and the professional education of our members that suspected violations are addressed. There should be no stigma attached to the person questioning a rules violation. We feel that it is worse to not address the issue rather than let violations, inadvertent or otherwise, continue to occur.
We would also like to express the thought that in most cases ignorance of the rules should not be an acceptable excuse for those coaches who violate the NCAA rules. For example, every coach should know that the rules for phoning and contacting high school juniors apply equally to their parents. The CRCA, through the legislative review committee, the ethics committee, the CRCA listserv, and the CRCA website, will continue to try to enhance the knowledge of our members with regard to