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What does the Beanpot mean?

By Andrew Merritt

When Boston College, Boston University, Harvard and Northeastern got together for the inaugural New England Invitation Hockey Tournament in 1952, it meant a little extra revenue for the Boston Garden — a combined 8,487 people walked through the turnstiles for the new two-night college hockey tournament.

BU coach Jack Parker, whose Terriers have won 29 titles, will coach his 39th Beanpot. (Dave Arnold Photography)

Sixty years and a name change later, the Beanpot has come to mean a great deal more. As it enters its 60th iteration on Feb. 6 and 13, the Beanpot is one of the most beloved traditions in college sports, bringing even the most casual of college hockey fans to a near-boil in anticipation and excitement.

Unlike nearly every other college hockey tournament, the lineup never changes. While most tournaments come around the holidays to break up the year, the Beanpot pops up just as its teams are jostling for playoff position in their respective leagues with only a month left in the regular season. And at the end, the winner doesn’t get an enormous trophy, but a humble pot that looks a little out of place during the post-championship victory lap around the ice.

So why is a hyper-regional tournament, always with the same four teams, still a success after 60 years? In short: What does the Beanpot mean?

The Coaches

Northeastern coach Jim Madigan won two Beanpots as a Huskies player in the 1980s. (Dave Arnold Photography)

“I think it’s part of the historical sports fabric of city of Boston, like Opening Day for the Red Sox or the Boston Marathon, and a lot of non-college hockey fans are just as interested in coming to the Beanpot,” said BU coach Jack Parker (Somerville, Mass.), who will stand behind the Terriers bench for his 39th Beanpot this month. “I think that being seen at the Beanpot is just as important as seeing the Beanpot. It’s certainly become an icon of the college hockey world, that’s for sure.”

Parker’s Terriers have gone two years without a Beanpot title. For a program lovingly (and not so lovingly) referred to as “Beanpot U” thanks to its 29 titles — 13 more than the next-highest total, belonging to BC — that’s simply not acceptable. Two years without a Beanpot hasn’t happened at BU since 1994, and the Terriers last went three years without a title from 1983 to 1985.

No one has to tell the Terriers about all that, of course. The Beanpot is as much a part of BU lore as Parker himself, and the veteran coach said he doesn’t usually need to remind his players when Beanpot time is approaching — if anything, he does the opposite.

“I don’t tell them anything about it, except that the night before, we’re going to play the Beanpot,” he said. “They know all about it; sometimes you have to keep them from getting too jacked up.”

Jim Madigan’s troops also are well aware of the Beanpot, but in a very different way. Northeastern hasn’t won the tournament since 1988, so on Huntington Avenue, the Beanpot means the kind of electric anxiety only a long-suffering team can understand. And the first-year coach certainly doesn’t need to be reminded of the history — he was an assistant with the 1988 team, and earned two Beanpot titles as a Northeastern player in the early 1980s.

“I’m sure the players carry some of that burden, because they want to be the team that wins it for themselves, but also for the institution, to break a long history of unsuccessful attempts,” said Madigan (Milton, Mass.) “We’ve lost the tournament in some good games in overtime, in the championship game. This team knows just like they knew last year, when it was 22 years that they hadn’t won. I think we just have to focus on, ‘Let’s just go play a good game.’”

The Huskies came about as close as they could to ending the drought last year, taking Boston College to overtime in the championship game before falling, 7-6. For the 19 returning players from last year, no history lessons are needed.

“The kids know it,” Madigan said in January. “Once we get closer to the Beanpot, I’m not going to have to motivate or rev them up. They know we haven’t won in 23 years, and the last thing I need to do is tell this team it needs to carry the torch.”

The Veteran

Chris Kreider also doesn’t need much reminding of last year’s title game — he authored the pass that set up Jimmy Hayes’ Beanpot-winning goal six minutes into overtime, punctuating the then-sophomore’s three-point game.

“It’s bragging rights, it’s bragging rights for the city of Boston, it’s teams we battle with all season long, and it’s an opportunity to kind of come out on top regardless of where the season series is at,” Kreider said. “You can sweep BU or sweep Northeastern in the regular season, but it doesn’t mean a whole lot if they get the best of you in the Beanpot.”

Some of Kreider’s finest moments at BC have come in the Beanpot. He also had two goals in last year’s title game, and scored a goal in both rounds as a freshman in 2010. For the native of Boxford, Mass., who grew up watching the Beanpot and dreaming of playing in it, it hasn’t been hard to find his game for the big Monday nights on the TD Garden ice.

Chris Kreider and the Eagles captured the Beanpot in 2011. (Dave Arnold Photography)

“Hockey’s fun to begin with, but in that environment, when you grew up watching the Bruins play, and obviously watching the Beanpot, it’s hard not to feel a little extra excitement, a little extra energy in the building,” he said.

In fact, the chance to play for that humble silver pot was one of the reasons Kreider chose to come to BC.

“Huge factor, definitely wanted to play in a Beanpot, to get that opportunity, and it’s kind of hard to say no to a school that can offer that opportunity,” he said.

The Rookie

Colin Blackwell’s Beanpot memories, for now, come from the stands or the TV screen. But the Harvard freshman from North Andover, Mass., picked his school, like Kreider, in part because it would afford him the opportunity to play for a Beanpot title.

“It means a lot. I’ve been watching ever since I was a little kid, got a chance to go watch it,” he said. “Playing in it is a dream come true.”

Blackwell and his Crimson teammates also are playing to break a drought, although Harvard last raised the Beanpot in 1993, five years after Northeastern’s last Garden victory parade.

Colin Blackwell hopes Harvard can end its Beanpot drought.

Still, Blackwell was 48 days away from being born when Harvard beat BU, 4-2, on Feb. 8, 1993, for the Crimson’s last title. Stop him if you’ve heard this before, but he thinks there’s a pretty good chance that this year is the year for the men of Harvard.

“I think it’s one of those things, you’ve got to kind of cancel everything out around you,” he said. “We know for a fact that we have the players in the locker room that can do it. We had a big game against BU (in a 4-3 overtime loss), and we showed we can play against anyone in the country.”

The Crimson open this year’s tournament against BU in the first game Feb. 6, and then BC and Northeastern meet in a rematch of last year’s championship in the nightcap. One week later, the winning teams will meet to decide who gets the bragging rights, who gets to carry around the Garden ice a very small trophy that means a very great deal to New England.

Posted in NCAA

Mentally Preparing for Playoffs…


by Shaun Goodsell, President and CEO. Mental Edge

At some point in your athletic experience you will most likely participate in some kind of playoff. These games come with greater pressure, more potential anxiety, and greater emotional highs and lows. So, what are the best ways to manage these very difficult times? This article is going to highlight three principles for putting your best foot forward during the playoffs.

First, have Realistic Expectations. Young athletes hurt their own performance as well as their teams when they think that everything they try should work, or they shouldn’t have to deal with things that go the other teams way. I have found that the more unrealistic the expectations the more intense the frustration. Having unrealistic expectations sets us up to be unprepared for what is most likely to occur therefore, putting us at a disadvantage when events unfold that are out of alignment with what we thought would happen.

Second, Focus on Actions Rather than Results. In pressure filled situations it becomes very difficult to remain poised and emotionally stable. When our bodies become overwhelmed with anxiety and adrenaline our judgment may become compromised and we become prone to outbursts of frustration and anger sometimes resulting in taking a penalty, committing an untimely foul, or simply performing tentatively resulting in less then excellent performance. This is heightened when we become over focused on results rather then the actions that are required to earn the results that lead to victories and excellent performance.

Third, Exhibit Emotional Flexibility. Playoff time is filled with ups and downs. There are moments of great excitement as well as great despair. Because of these paradoxical moments athletes are forced to deal with these ups and downs with poise and with grace. Doing this requires the capacity to be flexible and not allowing one’s emotions to get too high or too low. A phrase I have used for years to summarize this principle is “Never too high, never too low”.

Playoffs test our mental, physical and emotional preparedness. With the tips above, the uncertainty and pressure of playoff time can be an opportunity to shine and reveal your Mental Edge on your competition.

Best to you this playoff season!


Posted in Mental Game, Tips

Coaching Success Strategy: Talk About Effort, Not Mistakes

As the coach, your team looks to you for approval – whether it always seems like it or not. When discussing a mistake made during play, be sure to phrase your words carefully. Discuss the effort and not the result. If you focus on the result or outcome, players will equate approval with results and not effort.

In youth sports, this trumping of results over effort leads to kids “freezing up” and “choking.” Kids will increasingly hesitate to take risks for fear of failure. Encourage kids to take risks and to fail. You will accomplish two things with this success strategy:

(1) Improve the long-term performances of players and the team and

(2) Keep kids playing the sport.


Posted in Coaching, Minor Hockey

Daniel Spivak

As RIT co-captain built strength his role grew, becoming a top-pair defenseman

Daniel Spivak came to RIT one of four defensemen in his freshman class, joining a team that had four blueliners returning. Simple math made it clear that he might not always get the ice time he wanted.

Daniel Spivak's +10 rating leads the Tigers.

If playing time was out of his hands, he focused on what he could control – specifically how hard he worked off the ice. And as he spent more and more time in the weight room, he noticed something.

The upperclassmen who were working the hardest were also getting ice time.

Spivak followed their lead, becoming one of the Tigers’ leaders in the weight room, and his role has increased each year. As a senior, the Thornhill, Ontario, native is one of three RIT captains, plays on the first defense pair and leads the team at +10 entering this weekend’s big series with Mercyhurst.

“You have the opportunity here to put in that off-ice work; we have the time and great facilities,” said Spivak. “It’s sort of an individual thing. No one is going to stand there and drill you, especially during the season. I just try to make sure I’m focused and work hard.”

Increased strength can help any player, particularly a physical, defensive defenseman like Spivak. He’s totaled six assists in 107 career games, but offensive numbers don’t define him. His coaches asked him to be a hard-nosed blueliner, and that’s what he focused on.

“I decided, I’m going to work hard to be the best defender I could be,” he said. “I wanted to be stronger and impose my will on the other team. I knew working hard off the ice could help solidify my role.”

Spivak’s work has also solidified RIT’s team performance and chances of making a return to the NCAA Tournament (the Tigers reached the Frozen Four his sophomore season). They are one point off the Atlantic Hockey lead entering this weekend’s series with first-place Mercyhurst, carrying the best goals-against average in the conference and third-best nationally.

Spivak, who represented Israel in the 2009 Division II World Championship, has added 15 pounds to his 6-foot-0 frame since arriving on campus, now weighing 210. He’ll have the opportunity to take his physical, stay-at-home style to the professional ranks either this spring on next fall, thanks in part to the effort he has put forth off the ice.


Posted in Academics, NCAA, Training

Hopf on Training and Nutrition for the CHL

by Andrew Hopf CHL, Training and Nutrition

Introduction: Andrew Hopf, the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL provides tips for hockey recruits trying to get their body in top physical shape to crack into the CHL or NCAA. He’s also the President of Next Level Performance Training located in Kitchener, Ontario. Find him on Facebook or Twitter.

Image by jontunn via Flickr CC license


TRANSITIONING from minor to major junior or NCAA hockey leagues can be intimidating and downright scary for young hockey players in North America.

In the OHL, our players are traveling in “unknown waters” and are not only expected to improve their skills exponentially over the course of 6 months following their minor midget year, but also to gain a significant amount of strength and muscle mass to compete against NHL draftees.

On top of this, these 16 or 17-year-old men will be shipped away from home and expected to cook for themselves and essentially reinvent their life styles in a way that will allow them to manage the massive time constraints the CHL schedule puts on their lives.

This article is will explore the many physical challenges young hockey players face in their transition to major junior and the NCAA and will attempt to provide strategies in the areas of strength and conditioning, nutrition and lifestyle management designed to aid in the maturation process from a game of boys to a game of men.

I. Physical Preparation for the CHL/NCAA Through Strength and Conditioning

“Quick feet”, “first to the puck”, “strong stick”, “good decisions” and “strong on the boards” are all buzz phrases we have heard, or will hear our coaches use to describe attributes of players and to some extent will help them justify putting certain players on the ice during key times of the game.

For this reason, many parents and coaches have enlisted services of strength programs specifically designed to improve quick feet, agility or core strength. The issue with this way of thinking and programming is that it does not address the specific physiologic, biomechanical, biochemical and psychological needs for each player that are required for him/her to make quantifiable improvements in their performance that will allow them to compete against players 3 or more years older than them.

Essentially, there is no “one program fits all” approach to training a hockey player. To play at an elite level all players must be strong, powerful, agile and possess the cardiovascular and metabolic capabilities to supply the correct amount of energy for the demands of a 60+ minute game.  Although all the descriptions of attributes coaches use are extremely important in the game of hockey, how each athlete makes improvements in them may be different.  The following will provide some insight into how individualized programming works and some training tips to help you through your training for strength and power.

Developing a Foundation Through Functional Movement with Progressions Towards Strength and Power

Being able to complete a functional movement (Squat, lift, push, pull or carry) requires a precise amount of mobility (at the ankle, hip, thoracic spine and shoulder joints) and stability (at the knee, lumbopelvic, and scapular regions). If one lacks the proper amount of mobility or stability at any of the previously described joints, the movement will be inefficient (wasted energy) and could lead to either acute or chronic injury.

Once we are able to complete the prescribed movement with impeccable technical proficiency, then and only then is it appropriate to add an external load in the form of a dumbbell or barbel. For this reason it is extremely important for developing athletes and hockey players to consider a few things relevant to functional movement before and during their strength and conditioning programs.

1. Get Assessed

As a strength coach it is impossible to be able to program properly without assessing first. Tools such as the Functional Movement Screen (FMS), various joint range of motion and stability tests provide strength coaches with a clear picture of an athletes limitations and capabilities. Make sure your strength and conditioning coach is providing this, if not, you may not be getting a program that adequately addresses your athletic needs.

2. Be Patient and Progress within Your Means

A movement can become technically flawed if the external load becomes too great. Many athletes can become injured or limit their improvements by progressing too quickly and not pay attention to the small details in movement which have a significant impact on performance.  Progress within your means and never sacrifice technique for additional weight.

So many times during my tenure in the OHL have I seen young athletes try to lift more than they are capable of (just to keep up with the overagers) and in every single case the technique is horrible. Be patient! These guys are 3-4 years older than you and no one within your organization expects you to be as strong as them (not yet at least).

This might mean taking a few steps backwards to work on technique and address movement limitations, but consider it a small investment of time in what is hopefully a long and healthy career. The inpatient recovery in california allows adults to heal mind, body, and spirit through a variety of individual, group, and family medication.

3. Have a coach

Having a keen eye for energy leaks or breaks in technique can help reduce your risk of injury and can maximize your results. As a strength and conditioning specialist myself, I am always on the lookout for faults in movement at each joint and progress my athletes properly over the course of their training cycle. Executing each rep with perfection (whether it is with strength, power, sprint or cardiovascular training) is my number one priority. Make sure it is yours as well.

4. Preparation, Recovery and Restoration

In a league where you might only play one season before your NHL draft, your rate of progression needs to be exceptionally high. For this reason, making sure you are physically prepared for each practice (and obviously game) and subsequently recovering properly following the game/practice becomes very important. I use the analogy that you are only able to practice as “hard” as you recover.

What I mean by this is that if you do not recovery to the best of your ability, how do you expect to be able to train or practice hard the next day on a “gas tank” that is only half full. Areas that are extremely important in the preparation and recovery process include:

A. Pre/Post Practice Training Nutrition

For most players they are in school until 2pm, then are expected to go right to practice. Make sure you prepare ahead of time and have some sort of protein source (BCAA or protein shake) in your system 45 minutes prior to practice. As for post practice nutrition, you should be ingesting a protein source that is easily digested and a simple sugar. Without going into too much biochemical jargon, this is massively important to help you grow and replenish intramuscular energy stores.

B. Warm Ups Prior to Practice

This is one area that I am consistently frustrated by. Many players don’t even warm up before practices, yet we are traditionally told that practices are harder than games. Make sure that your warm up includes proper gluten activation and dynamic mobilization exercises before you go on the ice.
Concluding Thoughts on Strength and Conditioning with Developing Players

Many players are eager to get results but lack the patience and attention to detail required to progress properly though a program. For this reason, many young men put themselves at risk of injury and in a lot of circumstances don’t get the results they are reaching for. My goal from this article is to hopefully allow players to understand the importance of training with purpose and the technical requirements of strength/power training. Make sure every repetition is your best and never sacrifice form or technical proficiency for more weight.

II. Nutrition and Lifestyle Management

For many players who are entering the CHL, it is a complete “180” from what they are used to at home. They are in many cases expected to cook their own meals, manage a full-time school schedule, be at the rink for practice, video and training sessions, and usually at least attempt to maintain a social life. Even for a mature adult this can be extremely overwhelming, never mind a 16 of 17-year-old “man”. In order to help these young men through this transition I have composed a short list of “tips” they can use to help them stay on track and focused throughout their busy lives.

1. Plan Your Week in Advance

Plan all your meals, study/homework times, practice/training times, etc on a Sunday night. This will help you bring structure to your life and will allow you to be much more productive.

2. Prepare Food Ahead of Time

Maintaining body weight is one of the hardest thing for CHL players to do, due to the massive amount of activity throughout the week and in many cases the challenge of getting enough calories in their diet. What I suggest to many of the players with the Owen Sound Attack is to plan and prepare your meals on your off day (usually Sunday). This means:

– Pre cut vegetables
– Pre cook chicken, beef
– Bag trail mix (almonds, dried cranberries, etc)
– Have ingredients for smoothies ready

Developing this habit will make life much easier and increase your body’s ability to recover immensely from the strenuous game and practice schedule that you have.

3. Stay Focused

With the emergence of Facebook, Twitter and high-definition video games it can be very challenging to stay focused and committed to your routine. Whatever it is you are doing, homework, practice, training or cooking be committed to that task. Don’t have your phone near by so you can sneak a peek on Twitter. Sustained and purposeful focus is the key to success. Do not let distractions get in your way.

I hope my suggestions on training, nutrition and lifestyle management strike a chord in you and you take some of it and apply it to your everyday. The journey towards major junior and professional hockey is a long one and it requires sustained focus, commitment and attention to the smallest detail.

It is important to remember that every warm up, every repetition, every rest period, every meal and every recovery session is part of the bigger picture of making you a better hockey player. Enjoy the process of it and become passionate about self-improvement. The success you will reap from the investment of time and energy is remarkable and I am truly excited to see the quality of player many of our young athletes are going to be in the coming years.

About the Author

Andrew is currently the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL. As part of the 2010-2011 OHL Championship Team, Andrew helped recreate a structured strength and conditioning program with the Attack, which aided them in their championship run.

Andrew is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the NSCA and has obtain his Masters Degree from the University of Waterloo where he studies cellular muscle physiology. Andrew is also the President/CEO of Next Level Performance Training located in Kitchener, Ontario.


Posted in Health, Nutrition, Training

“What Scouts Look For” with MSU’s Tom Newton

by John Wires, JHR

Coach Newton On the Ultimate Hockey Recruit

NCAA assistant coaches are in charge of finding the perfect hockey recruit each season.

Tom Newton has been an assistant coach with both Western Michigan University and  Michigan State University for over 27 years! He recruited the likes of Ryan Miller, Justin Abdelkader and Duncan Keith to name a few.

NCAA eligibility rules allow for 21-year-old freshman, making the NCAA the perfect route for guys like me who were considered “late bloomers”. So Newton loves dispelling the myth that if you are not being recruited when you are 15 or 16 that you’ll never “make it”. He says, “just because it doesn’t happen after your minor midget year doesn’t mean it’s all over”

1. Performance

Newton says it starts with Performance. “We need great hockey players. But that doesn’t mean you have to be a 60 goal scorer in juniors.” Newton explained that there are great players in different aspects of the game. “You don’t recruit an entire team of 23 scorers. We need guys who will turn pucks over, win pucks in the corners, create space for other. We need defencemen who can create plays, break pucks out and quarterback a power play.

When I was recruited by Jay Heinbuck at St. Lawrence University, who is now the director of amateur scouting for the Pittsburgh Penguins, my stats were far from impressive. He wasn’t looking for a 50 point scoring d-man, he was looking for a tall, right-handed shot d-man who had hockey sense, could battle in corners and get pucks into the offensive zone.

2. Academics

The second thing Newton looks at is academics. He says: “We go to the schools. We need kids who want a degree. Generally MSU finds that high school students from Canada in the 70’s can go to MSU and get a degree, but you won’t be a doctor.”

He encourages recruits to “be the best academically that you they can be”. The fact is, it makes it easier on scouts and opens opportunity to more schools if your grades are better. Some schools can’t get players in with poor academics. The obvious examples are Harvard and Yale who won’t work with a hockey recruit whose grades are in the 70’s.

Newton says, “If you’re in the 80′s and 90′s, there isn’t a school in this country that won’t recruit you.”

3. Character

Coach Newton went on to stress that: “At the end of the day, you win with people. I don’t care how good of a player you are if you are not a good person, a good teammate, you never seem to be there at the end when you really need that person.”

MSU goes out of their way to talk to Bantam and Midget coaches, teachers and principals at a recruit’s school.They want players who are popular on their team. People who are respected and respect their teammates and show strong leadership qualities.

Hockey Parents Can Be the Deal Breaker

Scouts and coaches hate parents who lie, cheat and beg their kid’s way to the top. In our interview with Coach Newton, his first comment on parents was, “We don’t need high maintenance parents at this level”.  We look for “package players” from families that are happy to support them and stay out of their affairs once they hit the NCAA level.


No Excuses


Posted in Attitude, Tips, Training

Enhancing Self Confidence


Confidence is a player’s belief in their ability to perform well in any situation, practice or game. Confidence is derived from a baseline assessment of past performances, training, and preparation. As competency or skill mastery grows, your confidence becomes proportionately stronger. In order for players to develop high levels of confidence, they must have a clear understanding of the factors that boost and undermine their confidence, such as high expectations.

Confidence is a core mental game skill because of its importance and relationship to other mental skills. Harvey Dorfman (2005) describes confidence as a mindset based on tangible sources such as one’s past success in sports. Athletes derive confidence from one or more of the following three sources:

1. From practice
2. From what other people say or do
3. From immediate past performance

It is important to mention these sources because in order to enhance confidence athletes have to a clear understanding of their source of confidence. Many athletes believe that confidence comes from past success, playing well or positive experiences in their sport. Confidence also varies depending on the task you are performing. For example baseball players may be very confident in their hitting, but less confident with their defensive play. Doubt, indecision and negative thoughts are the opposite of confidence.

If athletes maintain doubts prior to or during their performance, this indicates low self-confidence. One intervention is by refuting doubts and instilling a positive/confident belief system. Another intervention to enhance confidence is helping athletes developing a confidence resume of all the reasons an athlete as to feel confident. This entails athletes taking control of their confidence level and being proactive with their confidence.


Posted in Mental Game, Tips

Some of what you should know about NCAA rule compliance….



Inappropriate contacts or actions by NCAA member  institutions may jeopardize the eligibility of prospective and/or student-athletes, as well as lead to sanctions being imposed upon an NCAA member institution.

This document will remind you of some of the inappropriate things that have caused student-athletes to become ineligible for NCAA play, as they have to do with inappropriate actions by member institutions.


Prospective Student-Athlete: A prospective student-athlete (“prospect”) is defined as an individual who has begun classes for the ninth (9th) grade. However, it is possible for a student who is still in a lower grade to be considered as a prospect. Please ask first if you have any questions or concerns.

Student-Athlete: A student-athlete is a student who is enrolled at a four-year institution and whose enrollment was solicited by a member of the athletics staff or other representative of athletics interests with a view toward the student’s participation in the intercollegiate athletics program.

Contact: A contact is any face-to-face encounter between a prospect, or the prospect’s parent or legal guardian, and an institutional staff member or athletics representative during which any dialogue occurs.

Recruiting: Recruiting is any solicitation (by phone, mail or in-person) of a prospect or a prospect’s family member or legal guardian. Only those institutional coaches who have passed the NCAA Recruiting Test are permitted to recruit for the institution.

Representatives of Athletics Interests: An individual, independent agency, corporate entity or any organization who is known (or who should have been known) by a member institution’s executive or athletics administration to:
(a)     Have participated in or to be a member of an agency or organization promoting the institution’s intercollegiate athletics program;
(b)     Have made financial contributions to the athletic department or to an athletics booster organization of that institution;
(c)     Be assisting or to have been requested (by the athletic department staff) to assist in the recruitment of prospects;
(d)     Be assisting or to have assisted in providing benefits to enrolled student-athletes or their families; or
(e)     Have been involved otherwise in promoting the institution’s athletics program.
Once an individual is identified as such a representative, the person retains that identity indefinitely.

Extra Benefit: An extra benefit is any special arrangement by an institutional employee or an athletics representative to provide a prospect or a student-athlete (or the prospect or student-athlete’s relatives or friends) with a benefit not expressly authorized by NCAA legislation. The following are examples of extra benefits:
•    Receiving cash or loans in any amount.
•    A coach or recruiter or staff or booster signing or co-signing a note with an outside agency to arrange a loan.
•    The Employment of the relatives or friends of a student-athlete.
•    Receiving gifts of any kind (e.g., birthday, Christmas, Valentine’s Day) or free services (e.g., clothing, airline tickets, laundry, car repair, haircuts, meals in restaurants).
•    Receiving special discounts for goods or services.
•    Receiving the use of an automobile.
•    Receiving a meal other than in a coach’s home on special infrequent occasions (e.g., Thanksgiving, birthday).
•    Receiving the use of your summer home to go water skiing, hunting, etc.
•    Receiving transportation for any purpose.
•    Receiving rent-free or reduced-rent housing.
•    Receiving a benefit connected with on- or off-campus housing (e.g., television set, stereo equipment).
•    Receiving tickets to an athletic, institutional or community event.
•    Receiving a guarantee of a bond.
•    Receiving a promise of financial aid for postgraduate education.
•    Receiving employment after college graduation.


THEY MUST NOT become directly or indirectly involved in arranging for a prospect, or the prospect’s relatives or friends, to receive money or financial aid of any kind.
THEY MUST NOT provide any “extra benefits” to or for a prospect, or the prospect’s relatives or friends.
THEY MUST NOT write to, telephone or contact in person a prospect or the prospect’s family (on or off campus). If a coach is accompanied by a prospect on campus, in the community or at the airport, do not approach the coach and prospect. If a prospect approaches you at an off-campus location regarding an institution’s athletic program, explain that NCAA rules do not permit you to discuss the program. Suggest that the prospect contact the institution’s athletics department for information.
THEY MUST NOT entertain high school, prep school or two-year college coaches at any location.
THEY MUST NOT contact the prospect’s coach, principal or counselor for evaluating the prospect. THEY MUST NOT videotape games or pick up films or transcripts from the prospect’s educational institution.
THEY CAN attend high school and community college athletic events for your enjoyment, but not to scout or videotape for an institution’s coaching staff. While at such an event, you cannot have any contact with prospects or their relatives. Should you find yourself seated next to parents of a prospect, DO NOT initiate conversation with them. If conversation is initiated with you, respond in a civil manner but DO NOT discuss anything regarding a member institution’s athletic program. Direct their questions to the coaching staff or the Athletics Compliance Office of the University/College.
THEY CAN continue ESTABLISHED family relationships with friends and neighbors. You are permitted to engage in your normal activities with prospects and their parents who are family and/or friends as long as they are not made for recruiting purposes and are not prompted by a member institutions coaching staff. Again, you simply are not permitted to attempt to recruit the prospect or discuss the athletics program.
THEY CAN attend a public event (e.g., a high school awards banquet or dinner) at which prospects attend. NO attempt should be made to contact or recruit the prospect at these events.
THEY CAN send the coaching staffs any newspaper clippings or other information about prospects which you think would be of interest. Your assistance in this way is very helpful.  The coaching staff will then make the contact with the prospect.
THEY CAN provide employment opportunities for currently enrolled student-athletes as appropriate.  Rules regarding employment can befound below.
THEY CANNOT provide any of the extra benefits listed in the “extra benefits” section of this site.
THEY CANNOT expend funds to entertain prospects or student-athletes, their friends or relatives.  THEY CANNOT even permitted to buy a soda or a cup of coffee for them.
THEY CANNOT provide awards or gifts to a prospect or student-athlete for his or her athletic performance. All awards must conform to NCAA regulations and must be approved by the institution.
THEY CANNOT allow a prospect or student-athlete, or his or her friends or relatives to use their telephone or a telephone card to make free long distance calls.
THEY CANNOT provide an honorarium to a prospect or student-athlete for a speaking engagement.
THEY CANNOT use the name or picture of an enrolled student-athlete to directly advertise, recommend or promote sales or use of a commercial product or service of any kind. Even the sale of a picture of an enrolled student-athlete would jeopardize the player’s eligibility.
THEY CANNOT provide room, board or transportation to friends or family of an enrolled student-athlete to enable them to visit campus or attend an away athletics contest.
THEY CANNOT provide room, board or transportation to an enrolled student-athlete for collegiate competition.

Criteria Governing Compensation to Student-Athletes – Compensation may be paid to a student-athlete:
(a) Only for work actually performed; and
(b) At a rate commensurate with the going rate in that locality for similar services.
Such compensation may not include any remuneration for value or utility that the student-athlete may have for the employer because of the publicity, reputation, fame or personal following that he or she has obtained because of athletics ability.
The following rules are applicable to any type of student-athlete employment, whether during the academic year or summer:
•    The rate of pay must be the normal rate for the duties performed.
•    The hours paid must be the hours worked.
•    Payment in advance of hours worked is not permitted.
•    Transportation to work may be provided only if transportation is available to other non-athlete employees in similar positions.

Fee-for-Lesson Instruction
A student-athlete may receive compensation for teaching or coaching sport skills or techniques in his or her sport on a fee-for-lesson basis, provided:
(a) Institutional facilities are not used;
(b) Playing lessons shall not be permitted;
(c) The institution obtains and keeps on file documentation of the recipient of the lesson(s) and the fee for the lesson(s) provided during any time of the year; and
(d) The compensation is paid by the lesson recipient (or the recipient’s family) and not another individual or entity.
(e) Instruction to each individual is comparable to the instruction that would be provided during a private lesson when the instruction involves more than one individual at a time.
(f) The student-athlete does not use his or her name, picture or appearance to promote or advertise the availability of fee-for-lesson sessions.

All charitable, educational and nonprofit promotional activities involving student-athletes must have prior approval. Student-athletes are not permitted to be involved in the advertisement, endorsement or promotion of a commercial product or service of any kind.

Important: This document is not meant to be all-inclusive, and it is not meant to provide any specific advice, including legal. It is a general document to provide some general background information, and may not be used to rely upon as absolute information upon which an athlete or family may use to justify certain decisions.