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(Sacramento) – Assemblymember Tom Torlakson (D-Contra Costa) and Assemblymember Mike Davis (D-Los Angeles) have introduced a bill which requires a university or college to write a Disclosure Letter to a student-athlete recruit detailing the terms of a scholarship before signing the National Letter of Intent.

“Student-Athletes have been promised the moon – multi-year free-tuition scholarships and paid-for medical expenses related to sports injuries. But some universities and colleges are not living up to their assurances and many student-athletes are left on the sidelines

without the scholarship and without help for paying off medical costs when a player is hurt while playing in a game, tournament or sport,” said Torlakson, who is a teacher and a coach and Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Schools and Community. “This bill will clarify the rights and responsibilities of the student-athlete  and university or college so the student can make the best decision regarding such an important time in their life.”

The NCAA prohibits multi-year free-tuition scholarships but students are often made verbal promises during the recruiting process that are not always followed through. Scholarships are limited to one year renewals and students can be dropped at any moment. In addition, the NCAA does not require a university or college pay for sports-related medical expenses so a student who is injured may be responsible for hospital, doctor and physical therapy bills.

“It is time for us to address this lack of transparency. Student-Athletes contribute to athletic programs at higher learning institutions around the country. These programs benefit the students, alumni, administration and ultimately the university or college. Enrollment also becomes more competitive when the sports spotlight is on a particular athletic department and fans start paying more attention,” said Davis,

Chair of the Assembly Committee on Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media.  “Therefore the administration owes a duty of good faith in negotiation with prospective student athletes and should not allow recruiters and coaches to make promises to take care of them which they cannot keep. Our bill will protect California’s recruits as they make one of the most important decisions in life.”

The Student-Athletes’ Right to Know Bill – AB 2079 – also requires all institutions with intercollegiate athletic programs  to provide a disclosure letter to the student recruits within one week of a recruiter’s contact with a student-athlete.

Website of Assemblymember Torlakson: www.assembly.ca.gov/torlakson

Website of Assemblymember Davis:
www.assembly.ca.gov/davis

Contact: Beryl Chong (916) 319-2011

Here are links to audio of Assemblymembers Torlakson, Davis and student-athlete Durrell Chamorro:

Assemblymember Torlakson says student-athlete recruits should be fully informed before they sign an agreement to attend a college or university.

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[span class=media]Assemblymember Torlakson says he hopes AB 2079 starts a national trend.
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[span class=media]Assemblymember Davis says all consumers, including student-athlete recruits, have a right to be fully informed before signing an agreement.
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[span class=media]Durrell Chamorro, a California resident, says he had a verbal agreement with a university in Colorado that was not fulfilled.
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Durrell Chamorro says colleges and universities should have to keep their promises.{mp3remote}http://democrats.assembly.ca.gov/Newsline/Audio/20100406AB2079Chamorro2.mp3"> mp3