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Key NCAA Definitions


Continuing Eligibility

  • You must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester.
  • You must be enrolled in and pass a minimum of 24 credit hours per year.
  • You must pass a minimum of 6 credit hours during the preceding semester.
  • You must earn 18 of your credit hours during the fall and spring semesters.
  • You can earn up to 6 of your credit hours during the summer.
  • Graduate students must be enrolled full time and complete a minimum of 6 credit hours per semester.

40/60/80 Percent Rule

  • By your junior year (5th semester) of full time collegiate enrollment: You must have completed 40% of the course requirements for your major.
  • By your senior year (7th semester) of full time collegiate enrollment: You must have completed 60% of the course requirements for your major.
  • By your 5th year (9th semester) of full time collegiate enrollment: You must have completed 80% of the course requirements for your major.


Prior to the student-athlete’s third year (following the fourth academic semester), an academic major must be declared. However, once a major is declared, the hours required annually must apply to the student-athlete’s chosen major.  The Athletics Department should not place undue pressure on student-athletes in choosing a specific academic major.

Grade Point Average

You must maintain a grade point average (GPA) if 2.0 in order to remain eligible. EXCEPTION: A student-athlete is eligible to compete and practice with a 1.70 GPA during the second semester of his/her freshman year only.


You are eligible to practice if you are enrolled in a minimum full time program of studies leading to a Bachelor's degree as defined by UL.


You are eligible to compete if you:

  • Have been admitted as a regular student seeking a Bachelor's degree according to the published entrance requirements of the University;
  • Be in good academic standing as defined by UL;
  • Be enrolled in a minimum full time program of studies and maintain satisfactory progress towards your degree.

A student shall not be eligible for intercollegiate competition in a particular sport if the student-athlete (or parents/relatives):

  • negotiates, signs or enters into any written or oral agreement with an agent;
  • accepts or receives any extra benefits from an agent or anyone who wishes to represent the student-athlete;
  • uses their athletic skill for pay, or for the promise of pay;
  • competes with a professional sports team or receives any compensation from a professional sports team; or
  • receives an extra benefit that is not available to the general student population.

Representatives of Athletics Interests (Booster):
Under NCAA rules a "representative of the institution's athletics interests (athletics representative/booster) is any individual who:

  • Made any type of contribution to University of Louisiana at Lafayette or its athletic program;
  • Joined a Ragin' Cajuns donor or booster club or any sport specific support group;
  • Provided benefits (e.g., summer jobs) to prospective or enrolled student-athletes or their families;
  • Assisted, in any manner, in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes;
  • Participated as a varsity athlete at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette;
  • Is the parent or legal guardian of an enrolled student-athlete;
  • Promoted the athletics program in any way.

Once an individual is identified as a "Representative of the Institution's Athletics Interest," the person retains that identity indefinitely.

Any face-to-face encounter between a prospect or his/her parents/legal guardians and an institutional staff member or booster during which any conversation in excess of a greeting occurs. Any face-to-face meeting that is prearranged and takes place on the prospect's campus or at the prospect's competition site is considered a contact regardless of the conversation that occurs.

Extra Benefit:
An extra benefit is any special arrangement by an institutional employee or a booster to provide a student-athlete, or his/her friends or relatives, a benefit not authorized by the NCAA. The benefits a student-athlete may NOT receive include, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO:

  • money, special discount, payment arrangement or credit on a purchase (airline ticket, clothes) or service (laundry, typing);
  • free or reduced-cost professional services not available on the same basis to the general student body;
  • use of a telephone, pager or credit card for personal reasons without charge or at a reduced rate;
  • entertainment services (movie tickets, dinners, use of car) from commercial agencies (theaters, restaurants, car dealers) without charge or at reduced rates, or free or reduced-cost admission to professional athletics contests from professional sports organizations, unless such services are available to the student body in general;
  • guarantee of bond;
  • signing or cosigning a note with an outside agency to arrange a loan;
  • preferential treatment, benefits or services based on his/her athletics reputation or skill or pay-back potential as a future professional;
  • free or reduced-cost athletics equipment, supplies or clothing directly from a manufacturer or commercial enterprise;
  • free or reduced cost room and/or board;
  • payment or other compensation for work not performed or at unreasonable levels for the work performed;
  • employment arrangements for a student-athlete or prospect's relatives or friends;
  • payment of registration fees or other expenses to attend UL sports camps or clinic;
  • use of personal property (boats, summer homes, cars, computers, stereos);
  • holiday or birthday presents;
  • promise of employment after college graduation;
  • purchase of items or services from a prospect/student-athlete or their relatives at inflated prices; and
  • payment or arrangements for payment of transportation costs incurred by a student-athlete or prospect's relatives or friends; or
  • any items given because an individual is a student-athlete.

Student-Athlete Opportunity Fund (SAOF)

This fund is established to further benefit the student-athlete. The fund is intended to provide direct benefits to student-athletes or their families as determined by the Sun Belt Conference Office and NCAA consistent with the following principles:

  • All student-athletes, including international, are eligible to receive SAOF benefits, regardless of whether they are grant-in-aid recipients, have demonstrated need or have either exhausted eligibility or no longer participate due to medical reasons.
  • Benefits are intended to pay costs that arise in conjunction with participation in intercollegiate athletics, enrollment in an academic curriculum or that recognize academic achievements.

Some examples of permissible uses of the fund:

  • International student taxes
  • Expendable supplies
  • Educational supplies and numerous other uses

Institutional Control:
Institutional control of athletics is a fundamental requirement of NCAA legislation. Specifically, the NCAA constitution provides that each institution shall be responsible for:

  • Controlling its intercollegiate athletics program in compliance with the rules and regulations of the NCAA;
  • Monitoring its program to ensure compliance, identifying and reporting to the NCAA instances in which compliance has not been achieved and taking appropriate corrective actions; and
  • Ensuring that members of the institution's staff, student-athletes and other individuals or groups representing the institution's athletics interests comply with NCAA regulations.

An individual who has either started classes for the ninth grade OR who has received any benefit from UL or a booster. Actions taken by athletic staff that cause an individual to become a prospective student-athlete include:

  • providing a prospect an expense-paid visit to a collegiate institution;
  • having an arranged in-person encounter with the individual;
  • initiating or arranging telephone contact with the individual or a member of his/her family; or
  • providing an individual (or his/her relatives or friends) any financial assistance or other benefits that the institution does not provide to prospective students generally (i.e. tickets to an athletic competition)
  • Recruiting:
  • Any solicitation of a prospect (or the prospect's family members) by the UL athletics staff or a booster to encourage him/her to enroll at UL and participate in the UL athletic program. ONLY Ragin' Cajun coaches who have passed the NCAA Recruiting Examination may be involved in recruiting prospects.

Recruiting Periods

Contact Period
Period of time when it is permissible for authorized athletics department staff to make in-person, off-campus recruiting contacts with and/or evaluations of a prospect.

Evaluation Period
Period of time when authorized athletics department staff may be involved in off-campus activities designed to assess the academic qualifications and athletic ability of prospects. No in-person, off-campus recruiting contacts shall be made with the prospect during an evaluation period.

Quiet Period
Period of time when it is permissible to make in-person recruiting contacts only on the institution's campus. No in-person, off-campus recruiting contacts or evaluations may be made during a quiet period.

Dead Period
Period of time when it is not permissible to make in-person recruiting contacts or evaluations on or off campus. In addition, there can be no official or unofficial visits to the campus by a prospect. However, it is permissible for a staff member to write or phone a prospect during this period.


You are not eligible to compete if you knowingly:

  • Provide information to individuals involved in organized gambling activities concerning intercollegiate athletics competition;
  • Solicit a bet on any intercollegiate team;
  • Accept a bet on any team representing the institution;
  • Participate in any gambling activity that involves intercollegiate athletics through a bookmaker a parlay card or any other method employed by organized gambling.
  • Participate in any gambling activity that involves intercollegiate or professional athletics, through a bookmaker parlay card or any other method employed by organized gambling. [Bylaw 10.3] Sports that cannot be bet on include: All sports sponsored by the NCAA including: Baseball, Basketball (including all NCAA Tournament Pools), and Bowling; Professional Sports.

Sports that can be bet on if you are of age (21) include: Horse Racing and Casino Games.


All violations other than secondary violations are major violations, specifically including those that provide an extensive recruiting or competitive advantage.

A violation that is isolated or inadvertent in nature, provides or is intended to provide only a minimal recruiting, competitive or other advantage and does not include any significant recruiting inducement or extra benefit.

Multiple secondary violations by a member institution may collectively be considered as a major violation.


An action exempting an individual or institution form the application of a specific regulation. A waiver requires formal approval (e.g., by the Management Council, an NCAA committee or a conference, as specified in the legislation) based on evidence of compliance with the specified conditions or criteria under which the waiver is authorized.