May 25, 2006 — The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced today that the University of Utah’s athletics program is in substantial conformity with operating principles adopted by the Association’s Division I membership and as a result has been certified. The purpose of the certification program, which all Division I institutions undergo every 10 years, is to ensure integrity in the U’s athletics operations.
Specific areas of self-study required for certification include academic integrity, governance and rules compliance, and commitment to equality and student-athlete welfare. University President Michael K. Young says this is a routine process for all Division I athletic programs, but he found the process beneficial. “The University welcomed the opportunity to engage the community in a conversation about our wonderful athletics program and the role it plays within the larger institution,” said Young. “The certification process allowed us to consider thoughtfully and collaboratively how the athletics program can even better serve our prime educational mission.”
The NCAA approved regulations to begin the certification of athletics programs in 1993. Initially, Division I institutions were certified every five years, but NCAA regulations were changed to incorporate a 10-year certification cycle, with a five-year interim report. The University’s last certification was completed in 1997.
In making the announcement, NCAA Certification Committee issued a statement concluding the University’s self-study effort was a success.
“The committee recognizes that the peer-review team made a good faith effort to review issues regarding your athletics program. The committee hopes that the athletics certification process has helped to educate individuals across campus about the goals and purposes of the intercollegiate athletics program, revealed the aspects of the athletics program that are worthy of praise and provided an opportunity to improve the intercollegiate athletic program.”