Prospective Student Athletes

Welcome to American University. As a prospective student-athlete, you have certain responsibilities to attend to before you may join the AU family.

If you are interested in participating as an American Eagle, please check with your high school advisor or the NCAA Eligibility Center to find out the steps it takes to participate in collegiate athletics. Work with your high school counselor or college admissions office to find with college is right for you.

As a member institution, American University is committed to the integrity of its athletic programs and adherence of all regulations governed by the NCAA and the University. Please take time to read this website and familiarize yourself with all rules and regulations. We understand there are always questions that will arise as a result of specific situations. If you feel unclear about how to operate within the NCAA guidelines, please contact the Compliance Office at (202) 885-3039.

Important Terms and Definitions

Prospective Student-Athlete: You become a "prospective student-athlete" when you start ninth-grade classes. Before the ninth grade, you become a prospective student-athlete if a college gives you (or your relatives or friends) any financial aid or other benefits that the college does not provide to prospective students generally.

Recruited Student-Athlete: You become a "recruited prospective student-athlete" at a particular college if any coach or representative of the college's athletics interests (booster or representative) approaches you (or any member of your family) about enrolling and participating in athletics at that college. Activities by coaches or boosters that cause you to become a recruited prospective student-athlete are:
• Providing you with an official visit
• Placing more than one telephone call to you or any other member of your family
• Visiting you or any other member of your family anywhere other than the college campus

Official Visit: A visit to a college campus paid in whole or in part by the college. Official visits can be no longer than 48 hours. A prospective student-athlete is limited to 5 official visits. (one per university)

Unofficial Visit: A visit made to a college campus at the prospect's expense. The college may provide free tickets to an on-campus athletics event in which the college team competes. Transportation to view off-campus practice or competition sites within 30-mile radius are also allowable. There is no limit on the number of unofficial visits a prospect can make.

National Letter of Intent: The National Letter of Intent is official documentation administered by the Collegiate Commissioners Association and used by universities to establish a prospect's commitment to attend a certain university.

Recruiting Contact: Any face-to-face, off-campus encounter between a prospect, prospect's parents (or legal guardian) or relative and a college staff employee or athletics representative; if the conversation goes beyond a greeting.

Recruiting Evaluation: Any off-campus activity designed to assess a prospect's academic qualifications or athletic ability. (reviewing transcripts on the high school campus or watching practices / games).


WARNING: If you are a student-athlete enrolled at another four-year institution or if you have been enrolled at another four-year institution in the last year (Division I, II, or III), NCAA rules and regulations strictly prohibit AU coaches (or athletics staff members) from having any communication* with you, directly or indirectly, until that first institution grants our institution permission to contact you. You may obtain this permission to contact from the athletics compliance office or the director of athletics at your current or previous institution.

Once you obtain this release, you may fax the release to the American University Athletics Compliance Office at (202) 885-3033. Once the release is obtained from your current or previous institution, then AU coaches will be able to contact you. In sports other than basketball, four-year college transfer students should request a release to be immediately eligible to compete before transferring American University.

*Types of communication include via email, phone or written form.

NCAA Transfer Guide

Prospective International Student-Athletes

The American University Department of Athletics actively recruits student-athletes from diverse backgrounds, including students from foreign countries. International Student-Athlete Questionnaire
Additional links:
• Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
• Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) general testing information and information on locating and scheduling the SAT overseas
• American College Testing Program (ACT) general testing information and information on locating and scheduling the ACT overseas.

Guide for College Bound Student-Athletes  
Initial Eligibility Brochure, Road Map to Initial Eligibility
NCAA Guide to Transfers