The external resources identified in this section are selected works of scholars, higher education associations, and higher education or athletics administrators. The Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics does not necessarily endorse all of the recommendations or opinions expressed in these resources but supports engagement, dialogue and research by all stakeholders.
Priority of Education
- The Student-Athletic, Academic Integrity and Intercollegiate Athletics. American Council on Education (ACE)
This paper makes the case that “intercollegiate athletics programs should be part of an institutional culture of integrity that stresses the primacy of the academic mission and ensures that student-athletes are first and foremost students in programs of higher education.” (2016)
- NCAA Division I Head Coach Academic Progress Rate database
Academic Progress Rate (APR) submitted by institutions for individual head coaches. The database is searchable by school, sport, year, and head coach first and last name.
- National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A) Best Practices for Promoting and Maintaining a Culture of Student – Athlete Success, Accountability, and Academic Integrity
This document was produced by the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics: Best Practices for Promoting and Maintaining a Culture of Student-Athlete Success, Accountability, and Academic Integrity.
- Academic Integrity in Intercollegiate Athletics: Principles, Rules, and Best Practices
This document, adopted by COIA in 2005, is a collection of best practices and policy recommendations to the NCAA on five essential areas of athletic academic reform: (1) Admissions; (2) Scholarships; (3) Curricular Integrity; (4) Time Commitment, Missed Class Time, and Scheduling of Competitions; and (5) Policies Concerning the Office of Academic Advising for Athletes. (2005)
- NCAA Academic Reform Web site
This Web site explains detailed information developed to explain new academic requirements and new NCAA metrics designed to measure academic success – the Academic Progress Rate (APR) and Graduation Success Rate (GSR). Links on this page also provide access to databases that provide the APR and GSR for each Division I institution.
- NCAA Federal Graduation Rates Database
The NCAA records the graduation rates mandated by the government. These rates, known as the Federal Graduation Rates, are accessible by institution or in aggregate, from 1999 to the most current reporting year.
- Graduation rate report cards for basketball and football teams competing in postseason championships and bowl games. The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport provides report cards on the graduation rates for teams competing in the NCAA Division I basketball tournaments and FBS postseason playoff and bowl games.
Athlete Health, Safety, and Well-Being
- The History Behind the Debate Over Paying Student-Athletes. Solomon, J. (2018). The Aspen Institute Sports & Society Program held a conversation May 1, 2018, in Washington, DC titled “Future of College Sports: Reimagining Athlete Pay.” The discussion was livestreamed at pn/collegesportsfuture. The Aspen Institute discussion explored the implications if NCAA athletes could be paid by outside entities for use of their names, images, and likenesses, like any college student.
- The NCAA and “Non-Game Related” Student-Athlete Name, Image and Likeness Restrictions. (2016). Feldman, G. Professor Gabe Feldman, Tulane Law School and Director, Tulane Sports Law Program presented awhite paper at the May 2016 meeting of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics. In it, he proposed a model that would eliminate some of the current restrictions on college athletes using their celebrity for financial gain by signing autographs or engaging in commercial endorsements using an athlete’s non-game related name, image, or likeness (NIL).
- NCAA-DOD Grand Alliance Care Consortium. The CARE Consortium endeavors to provide necessary infrastructure and scientific expertise to study concussion. The goal is to gain a better understanding of the neurobiopsychosocial nature of concussive injury and recovery in order to ultimately enhance the safety and health of our student-athletes, service members, youth sports participants and the broader public.
- NCAA Goals Study. (2016). GOALS is an NCAA study of the experiences and well-being of current student-athletes. Previous versions of the study (2006 and 2010) provided NCAA committees, policymakers and member institutions with the most detailed information to date on a range of important issues. Respondents provide information on important topics regarding their lives as student-athletes.
- Diverging Revenues, Cascading Expenditures, and Ensuing Subsidies: The Unbalanced and Growing Financial Strain of Intercollegiate Athletics on Universities and their Students. Cheslock, J. & Knight, D. (2014).
The research and paper was produced with grant support from the Knight Commission in 2012. The paper was updated and was accepted for publication in the Journal of Higher Education.
- Academic spending versus athletic spending. Who wins? (2013).
The Delta Cost Project at the American Institutes for Research issued a brief that compares trends in academic and athletic spending.
- A game change: Paying for big-time college sports. Weaver, K. (2011).
In the January/February 2011 issue of Change, Weaver discusses the pressure for big-time athletic programs to generate new revenue streams. This article describes why that pressure has become so intense and trace those streams back to their origins in order to determine who pays for college sports — and at what cost.
- Changing the game, Kirwan, W., and Turner, G. (2010).
In the 2010 September/October issue of Trusteeship, read about how rising athletic expenses are becoming a destabilizing force for many institutions. William E. “Brit” Kirwan and R. Gerald Turner show you how the game is changing.
- 2004-2016 NCAA Revenues/Expenses Division I Report. Fulks, D., and NCAA Research Staff (2017).
According to the NCAA, “this report provides valuable insight into the financial state of affairs in intercollegiate athletics and the changing environment in which college and university athletic programs operate.”
- Revenues and Expenses, Profits and Losses of Division I-A Intercollegiate Athletics Programs Aggregated by Conference for 2003 Fiscal Year, Fulks, D. and NCAA Research Staff (2003).
According to the NCAA, “this report provides summary information concerning revenues and expenses of NCAA Division I-A intercollegiate athletics programs for the period 1993 through 2002.
- The Empirical Effects of Collegiate Athletics: Interim Report, Litan, Orszag, and Orszag (2001).
This report states that it was commissioned by the NCAA to provide an independent examination of the empirical effects of college athletics, “with a particular focus on the financial effects.”
- The Empirical Effects of Collegiate Athletics: An Update. Orzag and Orszag (2003).
According to this report, the NCAA commissioned this updated report to “address two concerns with the existing data at that time of the Interim Report’s release. First, the data suffered from poor measurement of capital expenditures and the capital stock used in collegiate athletics. A companion analysis addresses this concern. Second, the available data covered only an eight-year period. Using more recently available data, this update extends the analysis so that it covers a 10-year period.”
- NCAA Finances
This portion of the NCAA Web site explains the NCAA budget and how NCAA revenues are distributed.
- Equity in Athletics Data Analysis (EADA) Cutting Tool
According to the EADA Web site,” this analysis tool was designed to provide rapid customized reports for public inquiries relating to equity in athletics data. This database consists of athletics data that are submitted annually as required by the Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act (EADA), via a Web-based data collection, by all co-educational postsecondary institutions that receive Title IV funding (i.e., those that participate in federal student aid programs) and that have an intercollegiate athletics program.”
- Behind the Blue Disk: NCAA Budget, Revenue Distribution and Postseason Football and Championships Revenues
This portion of the NCAA Web site explains the NCAA budget and how NCAA revenues are distributed. It also provides financial data for postseason football games certified by the NCAA.
- NCAA Postseason Bowl Administration
This portion of the NCAA Web site provides financial data for postseason football games certified by the NCAA.
The Knight Commission does endorse the NCAA and AGB resources noted below to guide university leadership:
- Trust, Accountability, and Integrity: Board Responsibilities for Intercollegiate Athletics (2012).
Also see: Association of Governing Board’s Statement on Board Responsibilities for Intercollegiate Athletics.
Adopted by the AGB Board of Director’s on Nov. 16, 2007 and updated with an “illustrative policy” in April 3, 2009.
- The Second-Century Imperatives: Presidential Leadership – Institutional Accountability
A report from The Presidential Task Force on the Future of Division I Intercollegiate Athletics (NCAA, 2006)
- ACE Roundtable Examines Issues of Academic Integrity and Intercollegiate Athletics. (December 13, 2016).
This paper makes the case that “intercollegiate athletics programs should be part of an institutional culture of integrity that stresses the primacy of the academic mission and ensures that student-athletes are first and foremost students in programs of higher education.”
- NCAA Division I Institutional Performance Program
A central part of the Commission’s “one-plus-three” model, the NCAA’s athletics certification program was approved at the 1993 Convention. This program certified an institution’s compliance with key operating principles. In 2012, the program was overhauled and is now called the Institutional Performance Program. The new assessment is more of a report card on the health of a school’s athletics program.
- Campus Athletics Governance, the Faculty Role: Principles, Proposed Rules, and Guidelines, Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics (2004)
“This document focuses on the faculty role in campus athletics governance. It articulates a set of principles, proposes a set of uniform rules, and discusses in detail guidelines that, when adapted and applied by individual campuses, can help ensure the proper function of this faculty role. In focusing on the faculty role, this document assumes the leading role of campus presidents, the ultimate authority of the institutional governing board, and practical centrality of athletics directors and coaches.”
- Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics
COIA, an alliance of university faculty senates founded in 2002 (no longer active as of 2018) to provide a faculty voice in the national discussion about the future of intercollegiate sports, consulted with the NCAA and other national groups to develop its best practices, which were published in Framing the Future: Reforming Intercollegiate Athletics in 2007. Researchers at the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism, housed in the College of Communications at Pennsylvania State University, surveyed schools participating in the Football Bowl Subdivision in 2009 to determine the extent to which they implement COIA’s best practices. The results were published in the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, along with detailed case studies of six universities that most fully implemented those best practices. The results and case studies can be found here:
- Faculty Athletics Representatives Association (FARA) Web site
The official site of the Faculty Athletics Representatives Association (FARA) provides resources pertaining to the role of the faculty athletics representative in intercollegiate athletic governance.