Monitoring Student-Athlete Behavior

2.   Examine our policies and practices for monitoring behavior of student-athletes to enable and ensure as high a level of compliance with expectations as possible. 

Conclusions:

Coaches and the Associate Director of Athletics/Senior Woman Administrator reported various means of monitoring student-athlete behavior. Coaches indicated they frequently reminded student-athletes of expected behavior and the consequences for violating behavior standards. Several head coaches use written policies to specify expected behavioral standards and sanctions for violation of such standards. In addition, several coaches and student-athletes reported the incorporation of upper-class student-athlete leadership to provide appropriate guidance for freshmen-sophomore teammates.
 
During the first week of the fall semester, the Associate Director of Athletics/Senior Woman Administrator holds a session with each team of student-athletes. In this meeting, the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics standards of behavior are emphasized. In addition, she meets with members of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) every other week throughout the academic year. SAAC membership includes at least one student-athlete from each team.
 
The NCAA Challenging Athletes' Minds for Personal Success (CHAMPS)/Life Skills program includes four to six sessions conducted each academic year. Topics covered include possession and use of alcoholic beverages as well as drug use, diversity, nutrition, gambling, Sexual Harassment, Assault and Rape Prevention (SHARP) training, sex education, resumé writing, and media training.

Recommendations:

  1. Each head coach should continue to meet and remind student-athletes of the standards of conduct and behavior throughout the year. The current practice employed by some head coaches of reminder meetings, which take place prior to breaks, vacation periods, as well as before the summer academic session, should continue. 
  2. Coaches should continue to emphasize mutual social accountability among student-athletes for conduct detrimental to the best interest of the team and the University, both in and out of season.  It was clear to the panel that the role modeling and proactive leadership of upperclassmen can be used to effectively socialize new team members, deter poor judgment, and strengthen an ethical team culture.   
  3. The Department of Athletics should hold regular meetings for staff and coaches to discuss common issues. These meetings should include discussion regarding team policies used to: (1) assure student-athlete adherence to standards of behavior and (2) monitor student-athlete conduct.