May 27, 2009
Here are some of the NCAA Bylaws pertinent to Air Force defenseman Kevin Wright's situation.
NCAA Bylaw 14.2.1 - Five-Year Rule
A student-athlete shall complete his or her seasons of participation within five calendar years from the beginning of the semester or quarter in which the student-athlete first registered for a minimum full-time program of studies in a collegiate institution, with time spent in the armed services, on official church missions or with recognized foreign aid services of the U.S. government being excepted. For international students, service in the armed forces or on an official church mission of the student's home country is considered equivalent to such service in the United States.
NCAA Bylaw 30.6.1 - Waiver Criteria
A waiver of the five-year period of eligibility is designed to provide a student-athlete with the opportunity to participate in four seasons of intercollegiate competition within a five-year period. This waiver may be granted, based upon objective evidence, for reasons that are beyond the control of the student-athlete or the institution, which deprive the student-athlete of the opportunity to participate for more than one season in his/her sport within the five-year period. The Committee on Student-Athlete Reinstatement reserves the right to review requests that do not meet the more-than-one-year criteria detailed in this bylaw for circumstances of extraordinary or extreme hardship. A student-athlete who has exhausted his or her five years of eligibility may continue to practice (but not compete) for a maximum of 30 consecutive calendar days, provided the student-athlete's institution has filed such a request. Further, if such a request is denied prior to exhausting the 30 day practice period, the student-athlete must cease all practice activities upon the institution's notification of the denial.
NCAA Bylaw 22.214.171.124 - Circumstances Beyond Control
Circumstances considered to be beyond the control of the student-athlete or the institution and do not cause a participation opportunity to be used shall include, but are not limited to, the following:
(a) Situations clearly supported by contemporaneous medical documentation, which states that a student-athlete is unable to participate in intercollegiate competition as a result of incapacitating physical or mental circumstances;
(b) The student-athlete is unable to participate in intercollegiate athletics as a result of a life-threatening or incapacitating injury or illness suffered by a member of the student-athlete's immediate family, which clearly is supported by contemporaneous medical documentation;
(c) Reliance by the student-athlete upon written, contemporaneous, clearly erroneous academic advice provided to the student-athlete from a specific academic authority from a collegiate institution regarding the academic status of the student-athlete or prospective student-athlete, which directly leads to that individual not being eligible to participate and, but for the clearly erroneous advice, the student-athlete would have established eligibility for intercollegiate competition;
(d) Natural disasters (e.g., earthquakes, flood); and
(e) Extreme financial difficulties as a result of a specific event (e.g. layoff, death in the family) experienced by the student-athlete or by an individual upon whom the student-athlete is legally dependent, which must prohibit the student-athlete from participating in intercollegiate athletics. These circumstances must be clearly supported by objective documentation (e.g., decree of bankruptcy, proof of termination) and must be beyond the control of the student-athlete or the individual upon whom the student-athlete is legally dependant.
NCAA Bylaw 126.96.36.199 - Circumstances Within Control
Circumstances that are considered to be within the control of the student-athlete or the institution and cause a participation opportunity to be used include, but are not limited to, the following:
(a) A student-athlete's decision to attend an institution that does not sponsor his/her sport, or decides not to participate at an institution that does sponsor his/her sport;
(b) An inability to participate due to failure to meet institutional/conference or NCAA academic requirements, or disciplinary reasons or incarceration culminating in or resulting from a conviction;
(c) Reliance by a student-athlete upon misinformation from a coaching staff member;
(d) Redshirt year;
(e) An inability to participate as a result of a transfer year in residence or fulfilling a condition for restoration eligibility; and
(f) A student-athlete's lack of understanding regarding the specific starting date of his or her five-year period of eligibility.