Back in 2004, after Cal's 41-6 thrashing of Stanfurd in the Big Game, it was looking like we had the grand opportunity to go to our first Rose Bowl since 1959. Yeah, we all know what happened. (Cough...Mack Brown...cough...douchebag...cough.)
But before that debacle, I was trying to get out in front of the possibility. I wasn't going to miss the chance to go to the Rose Bowl if we were in it. So I checked out every possible angle for tickets. One of those was through the Michigan alumnus husband of a friend of mine (herself a Cal alumna). This magnanimous Michigan man gave us a lead on tickets through the Michigan ticket office. So I signed up for Michigan's ticket lottery and, ever since, I've been on the Michigan Athletics' electronic mailing list. (Bitter irony: I "won" the right to purchase Rose Bowl tickets through the Michigan system. Needless to say, I waived them.)
My latest e-mail from Michigan Athletics comes from their interim compliance director. Looks like she wanted to get out in front of things and remind Michigan fans of their responsibilities and no-no's in the wake of the troubles of their bitter rival to the south.
Here's the full text of the e-mail:
From: The University of Michigan Compliance Services Office [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Tuesday, July 12, 2011 5:38 PM
To: [Ohio Bear]
Subject: The Top 10 Things Fans and Friends of Michigan Athletics Should Know
Dear Michigan Fans:
We thank you for being our most loyal fans, spectators, and supporters. As a University of Michigan season ticket holder, a UM alumnus or a member of any booster organization, you are by NCAA definition a representative of UM’s athletics interests. UM is held responsible for anything you do related to UM’s prospects and/or our current student-athletes.
The NCAA has strictly limited the role you, as a Michigan Fan, may take with regard to prospects and student-athletes. The penalties for breaking those rules, whether by accident or intentional, can be severe. Any infraction will jeopardize a prospect or student-athletes opportunity to attend and compete for UM no matter how minor it may seem. In addition, you might expose UM to NCAA sanctions, and you could be disassociated from the program.
University of Michigan’s athletics programs value your continued support. The best message you can take from this information is to ask someone who is knowledgeable about NCAA rules before taking any action with a recruit or a student-athlete. The rules are complicated, and there are far too many to mention in this e-mail. Therefore, if you have any questions do not hesitate to contact the Compliance Services Office at (734)-615-7341 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Elizabeth Heinrich, Interim Chief of Compliance
The Top 10 Things Fans & Friends of Michigan Athletics Should Know:
1. ALWAYS ASK BEFORE YOU ACT! Breaking NCAA rules can render prospects and student-athletes ineligible for competition at the University of Michigan. The NCAA holds the University of Michigan accountable for the actions of its fans and friends.
2. You MAY NOT make recruiting contacts with prospects, their relatives or legal guardians. A prospective student-athlete is a student who has started classes for the ninth grade (7th grade for Men’s Basketball) or above. This prohibition includes written and telephone communications.
3. You MAY NOT contact a prospect’s coach, principal, or counselor in an attempt to evaluate the prospect.
4. You MAY send newspaper clippings and other information about talented prospects to the Michigan coaching staff. Also, you MAY continue established relationships with friends and neighbors whose children are prospects or current student-athletes, provided the relationship pre-dates reaching prospect status and is not based on their status as an athlete.
5. You MAY attend high school or junior college competitions provided no contact occurs with the prospect or the prospect’s relatives.
6. You MAY NOT entertain any coach from a junior or senior high school, preparatory school, or junior college or provide them with tickets or any other type of benefit.
7. You MAY NOT become involved in arranging for a prospect, a Michigan student-athlete or their family to receive gifts, money or financial benefits of any kind.
8. You MAY NOT provide transportation to a prospect, student-athlete or their friends and family. Also, you MAY NOT spend funds to entertain prospects, student-athletes or their friends and family.
9. You MAY employ a student-athlete provided you are paying them only for the work they actually perform, paying the going rate for similar services, are not paying them or providing perks based on their status as a student-athlete and the employment has been approved by the Compliance Services Office.
10.You MAY NOT use a photo or name of a student-athlete for commercial purposes or sell student-athlete memorabilia.
Thank You For Your Support!
The University of Michigan Compliance Services Office (CSO)
1000 S. State St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
The more you know...