Official Visit Procedures

Items to complete prior to the official visit:

1. Official Visit Approval Form – The sponsoring sport coach/staff member acquires the Official Visit Form from the Compliance website and follows the procedure outlined in the form.

2. Academic Requirements (bylaw 13.6.3) –The sponsoring sport coach/staff member completes the Official Visit Notification Form, attaching the appropriate academic documents and submits to the Compliance Office. Although not required, it is advisable that the coach receive an NCAA Core Evaluation and Preliminary Review prior to the occurrence of the Official Visit. Academic requirements for an Official Visit are as follows:

  1. High school or secondary/preparatory school prospects: must present the institution with a score from a PSAT, SAT, PLAN, or ACT taken on a national resting date under normal testing condition. The scores must be presented through a testing agency document, on an academic transcript, through the voice-automated testing agency system, or they can be confirmed through the NCAA Eligibility Center.
  2. A prospective student-athlete must present a high school (or college) academic transcript; non-qualifiers must fulfill a 1-year residency requirement before making an official visit (bylaw 14.3.4)
  3. A high school or preparatory school prospective student-athlete must register with the NCAA Eligibility Center; and
  4. A high school or preparatory school prospective student-athlete must be placed on the institution’s IRL with the NCAA Eligibility Center.

4. APR, GSR, Banned Drug List and Initial Eligibility Standards (Bylaw 13.3)These items will be distributed by the NCAA Eligibility Center, but prospects should be directed to the UMass website for more information.

5. Travel Loan Request – A sport coach or staff member shall complete a Travel Reimbursement Request Form and submit to the Business Office prior to the Official Visit. It is necessary to do a travel loan for any mileage or travel reimbursement you plan on giving the PSA, if you are not using the travel and meal expense voucher to reimburse the prospective student-athlete or his/her parents. Meals and lodging should be paid for with a meal voucher or a credit card or direct billed to the Athletic Department. Receipts for items direct billed must be turned in at the time the loan is settled.

6. Transportation Receipt – If you want to reimburse mileage prior to the prospect departing campus you must use the Travel Reimbursement process. Only through that process can a prospect receive cash upon departure from campus (NO PERSONAL CHECKS OR OUT-OF-POCKET CASH!). Otherwise, use the travel and meal expense voucher process by having the prospect sign the form prior to departure.

6. Complimentary Admission Requests – Complimentary admissions are reserved through the Ticket Office.  Remember: Official Visits can get up to 3 tickets per prospect, plus a ticket for a Student Host; Unofficial Visits can receive up to 3 tickets per prospect, and 2 tickets can be reserved per PSA Coach/Teacher.  Per Bylaw 13.6.7.2.1, if a prospect is a member of a non-traditional family, the institution may provide up to two additional complimentary admissions to the prospect in order to accommodate the parents accompanying the prospect (e.g. stepparents). In order to access this exception, the coach must contact both the ticket office and the compliance office to reserve the extra tickets.

7. Official Visit Guidelines/Student Host Form (13.6.7.5) – The student host must be a student-athlete and must be approved by the head coach to host a recruit. A maximum of $40/day is permissible to cover actual costs of entertaining the prospect and the prospect’s parents, legal guardians or spouse. Institutional staff members who accompany a prospect during entertainment shall not be included in the entertainment allowance unless the staff member serves as the host. It is permissible to provide the student host with an additional $20 per day for each additional prospect the host entertains. It is the responsibility of each sport to review the rules with the student host(s), provide the student host(s) with a copy of the Official Visit Guidelines, answer any questions the host may have and complete the Official Visit/Student Host Form. The amount of host money given to the student host must be documented on the Student Host Form. The student host will sign the Student Host Form acknowledging the amount of money given to them and that they understand the guidelines outlined in the form. Please make sure your student host is aware of the amount of money for which they have signed, and that cash should never be given to a prospect.

8. Other NCAA Legislation regarding Official Visits – All recruiting visits must be in compliance with NCAA, conference, and UMass policies. All staff members and student-athletes involved in the entertainment of prospective student-athletes during a campus visit must adhere to the following guidelines:

Air Transportation (13.5.2.3) – If air transportation is provided, it must be commercial transportation at coach-class airfare with no upgrades. Charter flights are prohibited.

Transportation from Airport (13.5.2.4) – During the Official Visit, any member of the athletics department staff may provide ground transportation for a prospect between the campus and any airport.

Meals (13.6.7.7) – UMass must provide a prospect (and the prospect’s parents or legal guardians) standard meals comparable to meals provided to student-athletes during the academic year. The institution shall not make special arrangements (exclusive table, access to exclusive restaurants or membership only establishments). Dining off-campus is limited to one entrée per person per meal. Further, a reasonable snack (e.g., pizza, hamburger) may be provided in addition to the three permissible meals. Itemized meal receipts must be provided with official visit paperwork. For all meals, the members of the party present at the meal must be listed on the paperwork. Permissible guests include: UMass coaches and their immediate family members (spouse and children), student host, prospects and parents/guardians/spouse, athletics department staff members, spouse of athletics department staff members. Permissible guests who must pay for their own meals include prospect’s family members (e.g., siblings, grandparents) and student-athletes not designated as the student host. Boosters, UMass athletic department coaches or staff’s extended family (e.g., parents, sister, uncle), friends and guests of student-athletes CANNOT attend the meal. Prospects and prospects’ parents may never be given per diem, or cash in lieu of a meal. Only costs of actual meals may be provided during an official visit. If a prospect and/or parents wish to be reimbursed for meals during an official visit, they must provide receipts with a travel and meal expense voucher.

Lodging (13.6.6) – Any hotel within a 30-mile radius of campus may by used to lodge the prospect and their parents. However, the rooms must be the standard rooms containing no special accessories (e.g., Jacuzzis, suites) and no special decorations (special sheets or towels).

Transportation (13.5.2.2.4) - Vehicles used to transport prospective student-athletes around campus must be either the coaching staff or student hosts personal vehicle or an institutional vehicle normally used to transport prospective students while visiting the campus. It is permissible to use a standard rental vehicle with no special amenities in lieu of a coach’s personal vehicle.

Personalized Recruiting Aides (13.6.7.9) – UMass cannot arrange miscellaneous, personalized recruiting aides (e.g., personalized jerseys, personalized audio/video scoreboard presentations). Further, prospects cannot engage in any game-day simulations during their official or unofficial visit.

Publicity (13.10.1) – UMass shall not publicize (or arrange for publicity of) a prospect’s visit to campus. Further, a prospect may not participate in team activities that would make the public or media aware of the prospect’s visit to the institution (e.g., running out of the tunnel with team, celebratory walks to or around the stadium/arena on-field pre-game celebrations).

Funds – Institutional Control (13.14.1) – All funds for the recruiting of prospects shall be deposited with the member institution, which shall be exclusively and entirely responsible for the manner in which such funds are expended.

Items to complete after the official visit:

Following an official visit, a Travel and Meal Expense Voucher must be completed for a coach to be reimbursed for those items associated with an official visit. The following are the items that will be necessary to be reimbursed efficiently:

1. Official Visit/Student Host Form – Student host’s, prospect’s, and recruiting coaches signature must all be included on this form, as well as, the total dollar amount given the student host for purposes of entertainment.
2. Meals – Itemized receipts must accompany any reimbursement request, along with a listing of all those present at the meal. An Occasional Meal Form must be filled out in the event the whole team is supplied a meal in conjunction with an Official Visit.

3. Transportation - Complete the appropriate information pertaining to the prospect’s travel to/from campus.

a. Airplane – If the prospect flew via commercial air travel, you must attach all receipts and boarding passes in order to be reimbursed.

b. Car -- Enter the origin and destination information, number of miles the prospect is being reimbursed for, and at what rate (50 cents / mile is max) he/she is being paid for those miles on the Transportation Receipt Form. Have the prospect sign the form and forward the original to the Business Office.

4. Lodging - Attach a copy of the itemized hotel receipt to the forms, unless PSA stayed on-campus with student host.

5. Please make a note of any unusual circumstances that occurred during the official visit and contact the compliance office with those circumstances as they occur.

The following items must be submitted to the Business Office and a complete copy must also be submitted to the Compliance Office.

a. Signed Official Visit/Student Host Form.

b. Original Itemized Meal and Hotel Receipts (with lists of names attached).

c. Original Airline Itinerary (with arrival and departure times and ticket cost).

d. Boarding Passes (where applicable)

e. Transportation Receipt Form (if applicable). Prospect must sign form.

Official Visit Approval/Business Office Reimbursement - The Compliance Office will review the Official Visit paperwork. Additional information may be requested to clarify areas of concern. The compliance office will approve the official visit and forward the approval of the forms to the Business Office for their approval. Upon receipt of this approval, the sport coach will be reimbursed and/or the official visit will be settled. The Business Office and Compliance Office will keep all Official Visit records on file.

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