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Purdue for Life Foundation




Guide to Purdue University Athletics

What John Purdue Club Members Must Know

Dear John Purdue Club Members,

Purdue University, as a member of the Big Ten Conference and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, is responsible for ensuring that its student-athletes, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends abide with conference and NCAA regulations. Under these rules, alumni and friends can be categorized as “representatives of Purdue University athletics interests.”

This information is presented as a quick reference to the many NCAA rules which apply to our “athletics representatives.” Not all applicable situations are included, so please call if you have questions. The department appreciates your interest and support, but reminds you that an inappropriate contact or an inadvertent action on your part can jeopardize the eligibility of our prospects and student-athletes. When in doubt, the safest action is to check first and act second.

The University is proud to have the loyal support of our alumni and friends for its athletic programs. As we strive for national prominence, we must always seek the highest standard of ethical conduct. With your assistance and cooperation, we believe we can accomplish both goals.

Stay on board.

Mike Bobinski
Athletics Director

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FAQ's Regarding NCAA Compliance

Is Purdue University responsible for the acts of its boosters and booster support groups such as the John Purdue Club?

YES. Boosters are governed by the same NCAA and institutional rules and regulations as those placed upon all institutional athletics staff members.

Can a booster occasionally provide awards or gifts directly to a particular student-athlete for his or her performance?

NO. All awards must conform to NCAA regulations, be approved by Purdue University and be provided by Purdue University or an authorized entity.

What should a booster do if he or she is contacted by a prospect about Purdue University athletics?

The booster should refer all questions about Purdue’s athletics program to the coaches and athletics department staff.

What sanctions could be imposed if a booster violates NCAA rules?

Boosters who violate NCAA rules are subject to losing benefits and privileges. The NCAA Committee on Infractions has processed cases in which penalties included disassociation of the offending booster and the loss of season ticket privileges. In addition, the involved prospect or enrolled student-athlete could be ruled ineligible for athletics competition. Other penalties would be assessed against the university as well.

The so-called “booster ban” legislation applies to Division I and became effective August 1, 1987 (NCAA Bylaw 13.01.4). It reads as follows:

“In Division I, representatives of an institution’s athletics interests are prohibited from making in-person, on- or off-campus recruiting contacts, or written or telephonic communications with a prospect of the prospect’s relatives or legal guardians.”

May a booster provide benefits to a student-athlete after he or she has exhausted eligibility or departed Purdue University?

As a general rule, once an individual becomes a student-athlete, the individual retains that status indefinitely. It is not permissible for a booster to provide material benefits to a former student-athlete just because he or she has exhausted eligibility or departed Purdue University. The same rules regarding extra benefits still apply. Again, however, it is permissible for a booster to provide legitimate employment to a former student-athlete.

What action should a booster take if he or she becomes aware of an NCAA rules violation?

The booster should contact the Compliance Office or the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics to report all information pertinent to the violation. The Compliance Office will review the information reported, conduct an investigation and, if necessary, report a violation to the Big Ten Conference and the NCAA. The individual reporting the violation is encouraged to provide his or her name, contact information and as much detailed information as possible. However, violations that are reported anonymously will be treated seriously and will be investigated as thoroughly as possible.

Patsy J. Mellott

BS College of Health and Human Sciences, 1969
Fishers, IN

Patsy earned a bachelor’s degree in food and nutrition in business from Purdue in 1969, in addition to an MBA in food marketing from Michigan State University in 1970. She retired from Kraft Foods in 2006 after 36 years in corporate food marketing and marketing communications management.

A community volunteer, Patsy serves on the Women’s Fund of Central Indiana Advisory Board and the Purdue College of Health and Human Sciences Dean’s Leadership Council, in addition to the President’s Council Advisory Board. She is a former member of the Health and Human Sciences Alumni Board. Patsy held several offices from 2006 through 2013, including president and treasurer. She serves her community’s Discover Indianapolis Club in Fishers, holding several leadership roles for over 10 years.

Patsy has received several honors, including the Purdue University Nutrition Science Department Hall of Fame recipient in 2009 and the Purdue University College of Health and Human Sciences Distinguished Alumni Award in 2016. She also received the college’s Gold and Black Award in 2016, an honor reserved for donors who have moved the college forward by committing exceptional financial resources.

In addition to endowing two scholarships, the Patsy J. Mellott Scholarship and Patsy J. Mellott HHS Scholarship, she established the Patsy J. Mellott Teaching Innovation Award in the College of Health and Human Sciences in 2013. In 2015, she endowed the Patsy J. Mellott Women’s Tennis Coach Performance Award. She is a lead donor in the Christine M. Ladisch Faculty Leadership Award and the Purdue Women’s Network Virginia C. Meredith Scholarship for the College of Health and Human Sciences.