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In trying to remember your NCAA recruiting guidelines, it is often helpful to construct a recruiting time line. Here are some NCAA recruiting guidelines to keep in mind:
* Before September 1, Junior Year: Up until this point, college coaches must follow very strict recruiting guidelines. Coaches can only send you sport brochures, questionnaires, and NCAA education information. You are, however, allowed to call coaches; they just can't call you back. (Be aware of this if you intend to leave a voicemail message.) Also, you can make unofficial visits to college campuses. Any meeting with coaches must take place on campus.
* After September 1, Junior Year: NCAA recruiting guidelines become slightly less stringent at this point. Coaches are now allowed to send all kinds of information about their school. They can even send personalized letters. In addition, coaches can now initiate email contact with you.
* July 1, between Junior and Senior Year: Although this date varies slightly by division (see the brief college recruiting calendar), this is generally the date after which college coaches can call you. NCAA recruiting guidelines relax even more after this point, as college coaches are finally allowed to contact you in person off the college campus.
* Senior Year: During the senior year, NCAA recruiting guidelines reach their most relaxed state. You can have as many as five NCAA official visits (or, you can take NCAA unofficial visits) to college campuses after the first day of your senior year. These visits cannot last longer than 48 hours. Before you can make a visit, a coach must have a copy of both your high school transcript and an official copy of either your SAT or ACT scores.
Another area where NCAA recruiting guidelines become important is at tournaments. Don't be offended or discouraged if a coach does not talk to you at a tournament. The NCAA has guidelines which limit contact at tournaments. Coaches are allowed to say "Hi" to you, but anything more is prohibited. Coaches can talk to parents or guardians at tournaments, but this counts as one of the three off-campus in-person visits coaches are allowed.