Leave it to the NCAA to regulate how much contact a member school can have with prospective student athletes and their families - even when they are dead.
It's a rule that needs changing.
Boise State football recruit Emil Smith died in a July 18 car accident in Hemet, Calif. His brother Dimitri Garcia, 22, also died in the accident.
But when Smith died, the Broncos' coaching staff was handcuffed by NCAA rules.
Because Smith had not signed a National Letter of Intent (NLI) - signing day is in February - Boise State coaches could not comment on Smith.
They could not attend his funeral. They could not send flowers. They could not call his grieving parents or any other family members.
"There was nothing the school could do," said Scott Hobbs, Boise State's assistant athletic director for compliance.
Hobbs said the Broncos contacted officials at other schools, the Western Athletic Conference and the Mountain West Conference to discuss their options.
The answer was the same.
In phone conversations with Hobbs, he was careful never to reference Smith by name. Instead, he outlined the NCAA bylaws that Boise State felt compelled to obey.
Such as NCAA Bylaw 13.10.2, which states member institutions may only confirm its recruitment of a prospective student-athlete before he or she signs a NLI.
Or NCAA Bylaw 13.2.9, which outlines how large of a donation or other token of support ($100) a school may provide in the event of his or her death, provided he/she has signed an NLI.
No phone calls are allowed from a team to players or their families from between June 1 and Aug. 31, Hobbs said, meaning no Boise State coach could call Smith's parents.
Since no off-campus contact is allowed - and since Smith's funeral was to be attended by his teammates (or, in NCAA parlance, recruitable athletes) - even the funeral was off-limits.
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Btw, the NCAA's response to this was that Boise St. could have filled out a waiver in order to be involved with the proceedings. No joke. A waiver.