I put this on another thread but I felt that this deserves its own thread. Parents and prospective student-athletes could avoid a lot of the trouble that costs kids their college careers. These publications should be available for everyone to see.
This first year-by-year breakdown applies to football recruiting, it is similar for other sports, but the time periods very on a sport-by-sport basis. It is also for D1, D2 and D3 are slightly different again. Here is your summary of recruiting rules from the NCAA rulebook, guidelines for freshman/middle schoolers is similar to sophomore rules:
It is allowed for student-athletes to receive camp questionnaires and brochures. Coaches cannot text or call athletes, but athletes can call to ask questions. Athletes cannot meet with coaches off-campus at all, no exceptions. Unofficial campus visits are allowed so that the student-athlete can get a feel for the campus. No official campus visits are allowed.
The student-athlete can begin to receive recruiting materials as of Sept 1. From April 15 through May 31, coaches are allowed to call the athlete one time, but student-athletes can call as many times as necessary. Athletes cannot meet with coaches off-campus at all, no exceptions, and like sophomore year, no official campus visits are allowed. However, unofficial visits are permitted.
The student-athlete can receive recruiting materials. As of Sept. 1, coaches can call up to once time per week and the student-athlete can call the coaches as many times as necessary. Text messages are not permitted to or from coaches. Student-athletes are allowed one official visit per school and up to five visits for Division I and Division II schools. Unofficial visits are unlimited. Up to six off-campus coach visits are allowed. One off-campus evaluation is permitted during the months of September, October and November. While strict calender dates must be adhered to, a maximum of six contacts and evaluations are allowed. During the academic year, there is a limit of three evaluations.
It is the student-athlete's responsibility to read the NCAA rules and recruiting guidelines to make sure that he is always following them. They may change, so it is a good idea to review them every year. It is also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the coaches' guidelines to make sure that no coaches are overstepping their boundaries. Maintaining eligibility is critical and one wrong move could jeopardize this, so always be aware.
The following PDF's are all official NCAA publications, except the last one, which is an offical publication from Texas Tech University:
NCAA Division 1 Manual 2011-2012 (412-page PDF): http://www.ncaapublications.com/prod...loads/D112.pdf
The relevant sections for recruiting are articles 13, 14, and 15. Articles 12 and 16 become important once the student-athlete enters college. Article 32 is one I hope you never need, it covers policies for infractions.
NCAA Division 2 Manual 2011-2012 (349-page PDF): http://www.ncaapublications.com/prod...D2_2012_01.pdf
Relevant Articles: same as D1 Manual.
NCAA Division 3 Manual 2011-2012 (241-page PDF): http://www.ncaapublications.com/prod...D3_2012_01.pdf
Relevant Articles: same as D1/D2 Manual.
NCAA Football 2011-2012 Rules and Interpretations (PDF): http://www.ncaapublications.com/prod...loads/FR12.pdf
Football Acceptable Contact Limit Flyer (from Texas Tech, PDF): http://graphics.fansonly.com/schools...e/football.pdf
Remember- these rules are NOT set, they change to some degree on a yearly basis, it is very important to keep up with the changes. However, it's better to take the time and read up then to have your child unknowingly commit an infraction and lose a scholarship.