MIAA Announces Three Approved Recommendations From COVID-19 Task Force, Virtual Countable Athletically Related Activities Adoptions

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Association announced its Institutional Representatives Council (IRC) approved three recommendations from the COVID-19 Task Force. Also announced by the MIAA were modifications to its Virtual Countable Athletically Related Activities policies to adjust for NCAA action.

The first approved recommendation was to award the 2019-2020 MIAA Commissioner’s Cup presented by McCownGordon Construction. The Commissioner’s Cup will only include the results of the fall and winter seasons and will note that spring sports were not counted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As a conference, it is important for us to celebrate the championships that did occur this academic year, and to recognize the program achievements in 2019-2020,” stated MIAA Commissioner Mike Racy. “This award will footnote the interrupted spring season but it will still allow us to celebrate the 11 MIAA Championships that were completed this academic year.”

A second approved recommendation by the MIAA IRC was to postpone its June governance meetings and events. The conference office staff will explore alternative dates to conduct the Association’s in-person governance meetings and annual MIAA Awards Celebration. The meetings and events will be announced at a later when local, state, and national health officials properly advise for such activities to happen.

The third recommendation to be approved was the MIAA will not recognize the 2020 Spring Sports Awards for All-MIAA teams and postseason specialty awards (e.g. Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year, and Coach of the Year).

An adopted modification in the MIAA’s legislation policy for virtual CARA allows a prospective student-athlete to participate in virtual team activities and receive workout plans from coaches. These activities become allowable once a National Letter of Intent has been received or the institution’s written offer of admission and/or financial aid, or the institution has received his or her financial deposit in response to its offer of admission. Below is the MIAA’s Policy for Virtual CARA with the recent modification.

1. No organized, in-person CARA of any type, in any location, in any sport through at least June 1, 2020. This restriction does not prohibit voluntary CARA performed by student-athletes, on their own time and at a safe location. Student-athletes must continue to follow applicable public health and safety guidelines and community restrictions.

2. On-line supervised, “Virtual CARA” physical workouts and skill instruction, regardless of location, are also not permitted through at least June 1, 2020.

3.”Virtual CARA”, non-physical activities, are permitted with the following restrictions:
a.All “virtual CARA”, non-physical activities, including film study, are limited to eight hours per         week in all sports.
b. Only NCAA Division II “certified” coaches may conduct these “virtual” team meetings, chalk         talks, film study sessions, technical discussions, tactical sessions and other non-physical         activities.
        c.Committed prospective student-athletes (e.g., signed an NLI or the institution’s written offer of              admission and/or financial aid, or the institution has received his or her financial deposit in             response to its offer of admission) may not be involved in any capacity in an institution’s “virtual”,             non-physical activities. (Adopted 4-16-2020)
d.It is required that coaches provide two days off each week from “virtual CARA”, non-physical         activities.
e.No coach can penalize any student-athlete for not participating in any “virtual CARA”,
non-physical activities.
f.All “virtual CARA”, non-physical activities, required by teams/schools must end by one week         prior to finals for the spring 2020 semester. After such time, all sports would be considered out         of season (i.e. summer bylaw 17 restrictions) and only voluntary CARA per 17.02.17 could         occur.

4. Coaches may continue (with no restrictions) to communicate (via phone, computer, social media, etc.) with student-athletes for the purpose of “checking-in” regarding academic work and student-athlete well-being.

5. Coaches can recommend written, self-directed workout plans provided they are approved in accordance with proper procedures as outlined by each institution’s appropriate sport performance, medical and/or athletic training personnel (and in accordance with the NCAA Recommendations on Preventing Catastrophic Injury and Death). Taped demonstration videos on respective workout plans are allowed in order to demonstrate proper form and technique. Institutional personnel may not supervise, conduct or monitor workouts on or off-campus, or virtually.
a.These workouts may also be provided to committed prospective student-athletes (e.g.,         signed an NLI or the institution’s written offer of admission and/or financial aid, or the         institution has received his or her financial deposit in response to its offer of admission).         (Adopted 4-16-2020)

6. In-person, on-campus meals and nutritional supplements may be provided in situations where student-athletes are unable to leave campus. Off-campus nutritional supplements are limited to the permissible items as outlined in NCAA Bylaw 16.5.1(e)

7. The MIAA IRC and the CEO Council will convene regularly to assess changing circumstances and to make shared decisions regarding amendments to the above-listed policies. The policies noted will commence at 7 am CDT, Wednesday, April 1st, 2020 and remain in effect until additional guidance is provided.