Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Sport Studies

Major Professor

Patricia A. Beitel

Committee Members

Dennie R. Kelley, Ralph E. Jones


The purposes of this study were to determine how the NCAA continuing eligibility rules affect the academic choices and the educational enhancement of the "well-intentioned" student-athlete and to determine what exceptions should be made so that this type of student-athlete is not punished by the system when no wrongful intent exists. Fourteen Directors of Athletic Academic Support Programs at NCAA Division I institutions were sent the survey instrument. Twelve were returned, indicating a response rate of 86%.

The study was broken down into seven areas: (a) departmental personnel background, knowledge, and interaction with the continuing eligibility rules, (b) defining the "well-intentioned" student-athlete, (c) implications for the student-athlete's future, (d) academic limitations of the "well-intentioned" student-athlete, (e) issues involving junior­ college transfers, (f) adaptation, regulation, and supervision of the continuing eligibility rules, and (g) total estimation of "well-intentioned" student-athletes and junior-college transfers negatively affected by the continuing eligibility rules. A survey instrument was created by the researcher and addressed all of the above issues.

The respondents indicated that they have worked with these "well-intentioned" student-athletes and that they do recognize the continuing eligibility problems addressed throughout this study at their own institutions. The actual academic limitations were determined and subsequently some suggestions were made as to how to adapt the rules so as not to punish these student-athletes when no wrongful intent exists. The respondents as a whole agreed that there is a general cause for concern regarding continuing eligibility and the "well-intentioned" student-athlete.

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