Prospective Students (entering freshman and transfers): A prospective student is defined as “an individual who has never identified or whose previous collegiate identification was with another collegiate institution. The individual remains a prospective student until the student identifies with an institution”. As a general rule, an incoming student to a new institution, entering freshman or transfer, may not practice or compete with an institution’s team unless the team is conducting practice and competition within their 24-week season. Prospective students are permitted to participate in informal conditioning activities with continuing student-athletes. There is one exception to this rule that allows prospective students to participate with an NAIA institution’s team. The exception requires that prospective students be enrolled full-time in summer coursework at the NAIA institution or enrolled in 12 institutional credit hours for the fall term at the NAIA institution in order to practice and compete with a team prior to the start of the team’s 24-week season. If the student is not enrolled, they will still be seen as a prospective student and be subject to tryout limitations.
Summer practice/playing limits: NAIA practice and competition bylaws, outside of those referenced above, are only enforced from August 1st through May 15th each academic year. This means that any practice or game activities held during the summer are regulated by the institutional policy at each member institution.
Overseas trips: Students who are classified as prospective, may not participate in overseas competition with an NAIA institution. The student must be identified with the institution in order to be eligible to play. This is true even in the summer when frequency of play limits and practice bylaws are not enforced. Prospective students may play in overseas competitions if they are enrolled in full-time summer coursework or enrolled in 12 institutional credit hours at the NAIA institution for the fall term.
Bylaws Referenced: V.B.15, II.C.3a, II.C.3a casebook examples