NCAA Division III

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A Message from the Division III Presidents Council

Chair and Vice Chair

We hope this quarterly update finds you and your campus well as the fall semester comes to a close. This resource contains updates from the NCAA Division III Presidents Council's late October meeting.  Our goal is to provide you with useful information as you plan for the January NCAA Convention and engage with campus and conference colleagues.

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The Council reviewed proposed legislation and took positions on key proposals.  Division III will consider nine legislative proposals (five membership and four governance sponsored) during the Business Session Saturday morning, January 21.  Key proposals of presidential interest include:

  • Independent Medical Care.  A Council-sponsored proposal would require active member institutions to:  (1) establish an administrative structure that provides independent medical care and affirms the unchallengeable autonomous authority of primary athletics health care providers (team physicians and athletic trainers) to determine medical management and return-to-play decisions related to student-athletes; and (2) designate an athletics healthcare administrator to oversee the institution's athletic health care administration and delivery.  Click here for a white paper from the NCAA's Sport Science Institute that explains the origins, rationale and key components of this proposal

  • Graduate and Post-baccalaureate Transfers. A membership-sponsored proposal would permit a graduate student or student pursing a second baccalaureate degree to participate in intercollegiate athletics at the institution of his or her choice.  The Presidents Council voted to oppose this proposal.  The Council believes the proposal is inconsistent with the Division III philosophy, which states that Division III colleges and universities "primarily focus on intercollegiate athletics as a four-year, undergraduate experience."  The Council also is concerned about permitting coaches to seek out students who would spend one year of their eligibility at a Division III school, rather than remaining focused on recruiting students who will complete a four-year Division III experience.  The Council endorsed the current waiver process, which permits transfer eligibility for students who graduated early without "stopping out," and achieved at least a cumulative 3.0 GPA.

  • Financial Aid from Outside Sources.  A Council-sponsored proposal would ease the restrictions on a student-athlete's ability to accept a financial aid award from a source outside the institution that considers athletics leadership, ability, participation or performance.  Currently, an incoming student-athlete may only accept this type of an award if the recipient's choice of institutions is not restricted in any way.  This proposal would allow acceptance of the award if the recipient's choice is not restricted to a specific institution.  The proposal does not change the other conditions necessary to accept the award, which are that the award may be made on only occasion from an established and continuing program, and that there is no direct connection between the donor and the student-athlete's institution.
Click here to review all 2017 Division III legislative proposals.

The Convention schedule for Presidents and Chancellors can be accessed by clicking here.  Key scheduling changes include the Honor Celebration moving to Wednesday evening and the Association Luncheon (formerly Keynote Luncheon) moving to Friday.  Please check the  Convention website for Convention materials. 


The Presidents Council continues to discuss the NCAA Board of Governors' composition, structure and responsibilities.  The Board's Ad Hoc Committee on Structure and Composition will craft a recommendation no later than April 2017.  To change the current structure of the Board it would require an Association-wide, two-thirds vote.


Presidents and chancellors are encouraged to sign the diversity and inclusion pledge   recently approved by the Board of Governors.  The pledge states the commitment of a school to achieving ethnic and racial diversity and gender equity in college sports hiring practices.  To date, the presidents at more than fifty percent of all NCAA institutions have signed the pledge.  As a point of clarification, the "regular diversity, inclusion and equity review" referenced in the pledge is an internal, not an NCAA, review. 


The Presidents Council approved the appointment of Javier Cevallos, Framingham State University, and the reappointments of Matthew Shank, Marymount University (Virginia) and Tori Murden McClure, Spalding University, effective in 2017.  The Presidents Council also approved the appointment of Jay Lemons, Susquehanna University, as chair and Alan Cureton, University of Northwestern, as vice chair, effective January 2017.  Additionally, the council approved the appointment of Jeff Docking, Adrian College, to Council leadership, effective June 2017. 


It is our hope that the quarterly update provides the necessary and critical information you need in the oversight of Division III athletics on your campus. You can find the Summary of Actions, which highlights all recent Council actions, by clicking here.  We welcome any comments or questions. 


Dan Dutcher

Vice President for Division III

Louise McCleary

Director of Division III

Jay Jones

Associate Director of Division III

 Adam Skaggs

Assistant Director of Division III Governance Communications

Debbie Kresge

Executive Assistant for Division III

Debbie Brown

Administrative Assistant for Division III

National Collegiate Athletic Association 700 West Washington Street, Indianapolis, IN, 46204 US

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