NCAA Punishes Kalamazoo for Financial Aid Violations

March 23, 2016

The National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division III Committee on Infractions placed Kalamazoo College on three years' probation Tuesday for violating rules that prohibit Division III colleges from awarding financial aid based on athletic ability. Division III colleges are allowed to weigh athletic considerations in deciding whom to admit, but the rules adopted by the division's members bar them from taking such factors into account when packaging financial aid.

In a joint process through the NCAA's summary disposition process, the Division III infractions panel found that Kalamazoo had for at least five years used ratings that considered athletics participation in determining aid for prospective students, which meant that 567 students received aid packages based on their athletic skill or participation. In addition, the head baseball coach told dozens of players in email messages that "the college’s admissions office would increase merit-based financial aid upon his written recommendation," which the NCAA panel determined could be interpreted as a written offer of aid.

The NCAA panel imposed a ban on postseason play for any team that still has players who received aid based on sports participation.

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