The NCAA recently updated an interpretive matter that relates to neutral site contests and the provision of complimentary tickets to prospects. Typically, institutions are able to provide prospects with complimentary tickets to home games that occur at sites other than a regular home facility. However, the past few years has seen the development of true neutral site games by third party organizers, where there is uncertainty regarding the true “home” team for purposes of Bylaw 13. The new interpretation provides teams participating in these specific events with more flexibility to provide complimentary tickets to prospects at these events.
Complimentary Admissions for a Prospective Student-Athlete to Attend a Neutral-Site Competition (I)
August 26, 2016
The academic and membership affairs staff determined that each institution participating in a regular-season neutral-site single contest in team sports (e.g., one football game) or a regular-season neutral-site single event in individual sports (e.g., one track meet) may consider it as a home contest or event for purposes of providing complimentary admissions to prospective student-athletes, provided:
(a) The contest is not organized or administered by a participating institution (i.e., the event is organized and administered by a third party); and
(b) The participating institutions do not compete against each other on an annual or regular basis (e.g., members of same conference, traditional rivalry).
[References: NCAA Bylaws: 126.96.36.199 (complimentary admissions) and 188.8.131.52 (home games at site other than regular home facility) and a staff interpretation (11/9/88, Item No. a), which has been archived]