State of Tennessee Definition of “Athlete Agent”
The State of Tennessee defines an “athlete agent” as anyone who directly or indirectly recruits or solicits a student-athlete to enter into an agency contract for compensation or anything of value. This includes promises of future representation or negotiation in order to obtain a professional contract.
“Athlete agent” includes, but is not limited to, actual agents, runners, managers, marketing representatives, financial advisors, or other persons acting on behalf of an agent. This would also include any individual authorized by a student-athlete to enter into an agreement or represents to the public that he or she is an athlete agent.
A student-athlete’s parent or legal guardian will be classified as an “athlete agent” if he or she accepts a financial benefit or gift on behalf of the student-athlete or for himself or herself in violation of the regulations and bylaws of the NCAA.
TO DO BUSINESS IN TENNESSEE AS A SPORTS AGENT REQUIRED BY LAW TO:
· Have a permit (license) issued by The Secretary of State. *Failure to register can result in the agent spending 6 years in prison in addition to paying a $25,000 fine.
· Provide proof of possession of a valid permit (license) to any student-athlete the agent might contact.
· Provide notice to the athletic department 48 hours in advance of planned contact with enrolled student-athletes or their families.
· Notify the athletic department of the existence of a representation contract or promise of future representation.
CANNOT BY LAW (PRIOR TO THE EXPIRATION OF YOUR ELIGIBILITY):
· Initiate contact with a student-athlete, family or friends, unless properly registered with the State of Tennessee.
· Provide anything of value to a student-athlete, family or friends.
· Give materially false or misleading information or make a materially false promise of representation.
· Fail to notify a student-athlete before signing an agent contract that authenticating the document may make him or her ineligible to continue participating in collegiate athletics.
· Predate or postdate an agency contract.
NCAA RULES REGARDING AGENTS
In order to protect your eligibility, you need to carefully read and understand the following NCAA rules.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete may not agree, either orally or in writing, to be represented by an agent or organization in the marketing of his/her athletic ability or reputation until after completion of the athlete’s last intercollegiate contest, including postseason tournament, bowl or all-star games. This prohibition includes entering into an agreement that is “not effective” until after the last game.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete or any representative of the athlete may not negotiate or sign a playing contract for any sport in which he/she intends to compete.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete may not be asked to be placed on a professional league’s draft list, whether he/ she withdraws his/her name before the draft, whether he/she is actually drafted, and whether he/she signs a professional contract. Exception: the NBA Draft.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete (or family member, friend, girlfriend, boyfriend, etc.) may not accept expenses or gifts of any kind (including meals and transportation) from an agent (or anyone associated with an agent) who wishes to provide service to the athlete.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete may not receive preferential benefits or treatment (for example, loans on a deferred paycheck basis) because of the athlete’s reputation, skill, or payback potential as a professional athlete. Exception: A loan to buy disability insurance.
IMPERMISSIBLE: An athlete may not retain professional services for personal reasons at less than the normal charge. Must pay the going rate for financial and advising services.
IMPERMISSIBLE: A coach or other member of the athletics department may not represent, directly or indirectly, a student-athlete in the marketing of his/her athletic ability or reputation for a professional sports team or organization.
PERMISSIBLE: A student-athlete may consult with members of the athletics department for advice on pursuing a professional sports career.
PERMISSIBLE: A student-athlete may talk to an agent or financial adviser, providing he/she neither agrees to be represented nor accepts anything of any value. An adviser cannot speak to a professional team on your behalf.
PERMISSIBLE: A student-athlete may retain an attorney for matters of a personal nature, including evaluating the terms of a proposed professional contract, as long as the attorney is not involved in the contract negotiation.
PERMISSIBLE: A student-athlete may borrow against future professional earnings to purchase a no-cash value disability insurance policy, providing the athlete notifies the Compliance Office.
PERMISSIBLE: An athlete may compete professionally in sports in which he/she does not participate for the university (but signing a professional contract terminates eligibility for an athletic scholarship in any sport).
PERMISSIBLE: A student-athlete may ask a professional league or team about his/her draft potential and/or projection.