Student-Athletes & Coaches

Take home message: As a student-athlete, you must make sure you understand and comply with all the rules that apply to your position – otherwise, you risk being excluded from competition. As a coach, you are at the front line of U-M’s athletic program, and must take the lead in creating and maintaining an atmosphere of compliance in the program. Students and coaches alike should always ask for clarification from the Compliance Services Office if you aren’t 100% sure whether something is allowed, before you do it!

U-M Policy and helpful links

  • Current student-athletes in Ann Arbor: this introductory compliance video is a great starting point – it has been developed to give you a detailed overview of the NCAA rules and exactly how you need to comply with them.
  • Coaches & staff in Ann Arbor: The Coaches Compliance Manual contains a comprehensive overview of NCAA and Big Ten rules and regulations, and U-M’s institutional compliance management and responsibilities.
  • If you are a prospective student-athlete (or know a prospective student), you should be aware that rules apply to you as well, and to how people who are connected with the U-M athletics program can interact with you – they are summarized on this compliance page for prospective student athletes.
  • Financial aid and athletic scholarships are jointly managed by the Office of Financial Aid and the Athletics Department. For more information about financial assistance received by student athletes, contact Adrian Robson in the Office of Financial Aid.
  • For UM-Dearborn student-athletes and coaches: the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) rules apply to your sports. See the NAIA rules education page or contact the UM-Dearborn Athletics Office for more information.

Things to remember

  • ASK BEFORE YOU ACT – if you aren’t sure about whether something is allowed under the rules, ASK someone, before you do it. The Compliance Services Office should be your first port of call (or UM-Dearborn Athletics Office).
  • The rules around receiving gifts, extra benefits, and even things like meals and transportation are very strict – if you’re in doubt, it’s always safer to refuse such an offer, or check if it’s ok before you accept it.
  • No violation is too small to worry about – the consequences that can flow from even small infractions of NCAA or Big Ten rules can be significant; and have the potential to affect not only the individual athletes or coaches involved, but also their team, the U-M athletics program, and the reputation of U-M as an institution. If you witness something that you think may be outside the rules, it is in everyone’s best interests for you to report it, as early as you can.
  • Some sports are higher profile than others; but all student-athletes and coaches in all varsity sports need to comply with the rules that apply to them.

People to talk to

On the Ann Arbor campus, the Compliance Services Office within the Athletics Department should be your first port of call for any questions related to athletics compliance.

On the UM-Dearborn campus, the UM-Dearborn Athletics Office should be your first port of call for any questions related to athletics compliance.

If you have a question about athletic scholarships or financial aid that a student athlete receives, contact Adrian Robson in the Office of Financial Aid (Ann Arbor).

For legal assistance or advice relating to athletics compliance, contact Debbie Kowich in the Office of the General Counsel.


Established 3/4/11, last updated 3/1/17 РContact us if you believe any information is incorrect or outdated