I want to be very careful here. But going by Chris Jones' twitter, he appears to be considering jumping to the pro's (presumably euros) because of family concerns. (or maybe his decision is just about who's birthday party to attend this weekend).
I totally understand and admire this young man for his sense of obligation to his family and if he must go early in order to support them, I will only respect him more; but it would be a terrible shame for his education and future career to suffer (sure he could improve and make a good living eventually overseas, but another year to develop plus a diploma could mean so much to his future)
Here's where I'm going with this: (again I want to be very very careful) There are countless NCAA rules limiting contributions or benefits to athletes and their families, I understand and respect the need for this, just imagine if LBA fans were allowed to contribute at will. But I do know that their are certain, and no doubt complicated, provisions for boosters to reach out to athletes or their families regarding things like employment opportunities, as long as they are not given unfair preferential treatment and are fairly compensated for the position.
This text, pulled from Notre Dame's website leads me to believe there is some room for assisting his family:"What can you do for a current student-athlete as a supporter of Notre Dame Athletics?
- Contact a current student-athlete regarding employment opportunities in which the student-athlete will be paid the going rate for work performed. Student-athletes are to be hired based on their qualifications and not on their status as a student-athlete.
- Provide a student-athlete an occasional meal in your home or on Notre Dame’s campus. Occasional meals must be approved in advance by the Compliance Office.
- Please refrain from offering current student-athletes, their families, and friends anything that is not available to the general public or the Notre Dame student body. This includes any benefit or special arrangement such as free or reduced cost lodging, meals or services. "
Again, I know that this is a sensitive area, and I don't want to come off as someone who only wants to keep CJ here because of his value to the program. In an era where many believe athletes should be directly paid for competing, I think it is ludicrous if there is nothing we as a group of supporters can legally do to help Chris complete his education.
I know there are at least a few lawyers or more informed readers on this sight and I was hoping for your input; and to let me know if I am totally outside of reasonable or ethical thought.