Information That All Alumni, Fans And Friends Of UMass Should Know

Who is considered a representative of UMass athletics interests (booster)?
According to NCAA regulations, a representative of UMass athletics interests (booster) is any person who:

  • Is a parent, legal guardian, or person associated with a current student-athlete at UMass
  • Has ever made a financial contribution to the department of athletics.
  • Is or has ever been a season ticket holder in any sport.
  • Has ever helped arrange employment for or employed a current or prospective student athlete.
  • Has ever been involved, in any way, in the promotion of the UMass athletic program.
    Once an individual has been identified as a representative of UMass athletics interests (booster), he/she retains this identity forever, even if the individual discontinues contributions or involvement with the athletic programs. The University of Massachusetts is ultimately responsible for the acts of all boosters in relation to NCAA rules and regulations.
  • Reporting Violations

  • Requesting a student-athlete or a team

  • The form (see promotional activities request form below) must be returned to the Office of Athletic Compliance for approval. If you have any questions, please contact Kim at (413) 545-182


  • Preexisting Relationship with a Current or Prospective Student-Athlete
    Boosters are prohibited from providing any type of benefit to a current or prospective student-athlete. NCAA Bylaw prohibits preferential treatment, benefits or services because of the individual's athletics reputation or skill or pay-back potential as a professional athlete, unless such treatment, benefits or services are specifically permitted under NCAA legislation.

    The only exception to this rule is if there is a clear preexisting relationship between the booster and the student-athlete. The NCAA membership services staff reviewed the application of NCAA Bylaw as it relates to factual situations in which an individual (student-athlete or prospective student-athlete) has received benefits prior to collegiate enrollment from someone other than a family member or legal guardian, and agreed that the following objective guidelines generally should be used in determining whether such benefits are contrary to the legislation:

    1. Did the relationship between the athlete (or the athlete's parents) and the individual providing the benefit(s) develop as a result of the athlete's participation in athletics or notoriety related thereto?
    2. Did the relationship between the athlete (or the athlete's parents) and the individual providing the benefit(s) predate the athlete's status as a prospective student-athlete?
    3. Did the relationship between the athlete (or the athlete's parents) and the individual providing the benefit(s) predate the athlete's status achieved as a result of his or her athletics ability or reputation?
    4. Was the pattern of benefits provided by the individual to the athlete (or the athlete's parents) prior to the athlete attaining notoriety as a skilled athlete similar in nature to those provided after attaining such stature?
    The subcommittee, however, noted that the origin and duration of a relationship and the consistency of benefits provided during the relationship are key factors in determining whether the benefits provided are contrary to the spirit and intent of Bylaw The subcommittee determined that prior to initial full-time collegiate enrollment, a prospective student-athlete may receive normal and reasonable living expenses from an individual with whom the student-athlete has an established relationship (e.g., high-school coach, non-scholastic athletics team coach, family of a teammate), even if the relationship developed as a result of athletics participation, provided:
    1. The individual is not an agent,
    2. The individual is not an athletics representative of a particular institution involved in recruiting the prospect, and
    3. Such living expenses are consistent with the types of expenses provided by the individual as a part of normal living arrangements (e.g., housing, meals, occasional spending money, use of the family car).
    The subcommittee noted that the above mentioned interpretation does not apply to individuals who have no logical ties to the prospect. It also noted that a current student-athlete who, prior to initial collegiate enrollment, has been receiving normal and reasonable living expenses from an individual with whom he or she has an established relationship may continue to receive occasional benefits (e.g., meals during campus visits, reasonable entertainment) from an individual or family with whom the student-athlete has an established relationship. Such expenses may not include educational expenses associated with a grant-in-aid (i.e., tuition and fees, room and board, and required course-related books).
    Please contact the UMass Athletic Compliance Office PRIOR to providing a benefit of any kind to a current or prospective student-athlete, and for questions regarding the above information.
    Use of Student-Athlete's Name, Picture, or Likeness Prohibited

    NCAA rules prohibit the use of a student-athletes name, picture, or likeness to be used in the promotion of any business (such as advertisements) or to appear on any commercial items such as t-shirts. The use of a UMass student-athlete's name, picture, or likeness in any commercial venture jeopardizes the eligibility of the student-athlete's eligibility. Please help us comply with NCAA rules and refrain from using the name, picture, of likeness of a UMass student-athlete in any advertising or on any commercial items.

    NCAA Bylaw Advertisements and Promotions After Becoming a Student-Athlete.
    After becoming a student-athlete, an individual shall not be eligible for participation in intercollegiate athletics if the individual: (a) Accepts any remuneration for or permits the use of his or her name or picture to advertise, recommend or promote directly the sale or use of a commercial product or service of any kind; or (b) Receives remuneration for endorsing a commercial product or service through the individual's use of such product or service.

    NCAA Bylaw Use of a Student-Athlete's Name or Picture without Knowledge or Permission.
    If a student-athlete's name or picture appears on commercial items (e.g., T-shirts, sweatshirts, serving trays, playing cards, posters) or is used to promote a commercial product sold by an individual or agency without the student-athlete's knowledge or permission, the student-athlete (or the institution acting on behalf of the student-athlete) is required to take steps to stop such an activity in order to retain his or her eligibility for intercollegiate athletics. Such steps are not required in cases in which a student-athlete's photograph is sold by an individual or agency (e.g., private photographer, news agency) for private use. (Revised: 1/11/97, 5/12/05)

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