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What Is the NCAA Dead Period?

 

The most restrictive of all the recruiting periods is the NCAA Dead Period. During the dead period, coaches may not have any in-person contact with recruits and/or their parents. In other words, coaches are not allowed to talk to recruits at their college campus, the athlete’s school, an athletic camp or even the grocery store.

While the term “dead period” makes it seem like all recruiting stops during this time, that’s actually not the case. Athletes and coaches are still allowed to communicate via phone, email, social media and other digital communication channels. Take a look at our NCAA recruiting rules to learn more about the different ways athletes and coaches can communicate. The goal of the NCAA Dead Period is to give athletes a little bit of time and breathing room to think about what school they want to sign with.

 

Recruiting tips for the NCAA Dead Period

While recruits can’t speak to a coach face-to-face, there’s plenty of ways to continue building relationships with coaches during this time. You can call, email, text, direct message them on Facebook and much more. You can also use this time for its intended purpose: Take a step back and go over all the schools you are interested in. Ask yourself which schools are genuinely recruiting you, as well as which schools you can truly see yourself living at for four years.

Insider Tip: Take a look at the upcoming official and unofficial visits you have lined up. Check those dates against your sport’s dead period. If any of your visits fall within the dead period window, reschedule them if possible. If you visit a school during this time, you will not be able to speak or meet with the coach. Meeting with the college coach is one of the most important aspects of an official or unofficial visit, so you want to make sure you’re visiting at a time that this is possible. Learn more about official visits and unofficial visits.

 

When is the NCAA Dead Period?

While the recruiting calendar varies by sport, the dead period usually takes place during the early signing period (for sports that have an early signing period), as well as at the beginning of the regular signing period. We’ve included the dates for each sport’s dead period below. Division III schools do not have designated dead periods.

 

Division I Bowl Sub-division Football Dead Periods

  • August 1-31, 2019
    • Except: The 48 hours before a home game in August or September 1-2 through the 48 hours after the conclusion of the game is considered a quiet period
  • December 16, 2019 – January 16, 2020
    • Except: The seven days immediately before the first day of classes of the institution’s second academic term that are not part of the contact period (applicable only to prospective student athletes who intend to enroll midyear) is a quiet period
    • Except: December 15-21, 2019 is a contact period for National Service Academies
    • Except: January 10-12, 2020 is a quiet period for National Service Academies
    • *December 16-19, 2019 for midyear JUCO NLI Signing Period remains a dead period for junior college prospective student-athletes who intend to enroll midyear
  • February 3-29, 2020
  • June 22 – July 24, 2020

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Division I Championship Sub-division Dead Periods

  • August 1-31, 2019
    • Except: The 48 hours before a home game in August or September 1-2 through the 48 hours after the conclusion of the game is considered a quiet period
  • December 16, 2019 – January 16, 2020
    • This is a dead period, except for the seven days immediately before the first day of classes of the institution’s second academic term that are not part of the contact period (applicable only to prospective student athletes who intend to enroll midyear) is a quiet period
  • February 3-6, 2020

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Division I Baseball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • January 2-5, 2020
  • May 25 – June 1, 2020
  • June 20-22, 2020
  • July 3-5, 2020

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Division I Men’s Basketball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • December 24-26, 2019
  • April 2-9 (noon), 2020
  • April 13-16, 2020
  • May 21-30, 2020
  • July 6-31, 2020*
    • Except: July 9-12, 2020 is a dead period
    • Except: July 21-26, 2020 for NCAA College Basketball Academy only
    • *A prospective student-athlete may not make an unofficial visit during the month of July unless he has signed a NLI or the institution’s written offer of admission and/or financial aid, or the institution has received a financial deposit from the prospective student-athlete in response to an offer of admission

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Division I Women’s Basketball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • Dember 24-26, 2019
  • April 3-16, 2020
    • Except: April 10-12, 2020 is a quiet period
  • July 13-20, 2020

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Division I Men’s/Women’s Cross Country and Track & Field Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • November 23, 2019
  • December 9, 2019 – January 1, 2020
  • March 13-14, 2020
  • June 10-13, 2020

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Division I Men’s Golf Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • November 28 – December 1, 2019
  • December 9-12 (12:01 am):  Dead period; the NCAA explains that a dead period is in effect from the first official day of the Golf Coaches Association of America Convention until 12:01 am on the day after the convention ends
  • December 23, 2019 – January 1, 2020

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Division I Men’s Lacrosse Dead Periods

  • August 13-31, 2019
  • November 11-14, 2019
  • November 25 – December 1, 2019
  • December 24, 2019 – January 5, 2020
  • May 22-26 (noon), 2020
  • July 2-6, 2020

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Division I Women’s Lacrosse Dead Periods

  • August 1-14, 2019
  • November 11-14, 2019
  • November 27-29, 2019
  • December 24-26, 2019
  • December 31, 2019 – January 2, 2020
  • May 22-24, 2020
    • Except: During the Women’s Lacrosse Championship, coaches can evaluate athletes at one event, as long as it’s hosted within a 100-mile radius of the championship site. Coaches are not permitted to attend any evaluation event that occurs two hours before, during, or two hours after the semifinals competition and final game.
  • July 3-5, 2020

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Division I Women’s Volleyball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019

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Division I Women’s Beach Volleyball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • December 18-31, 2019 
    • Except for coaches attending the AVCA annual awards banquet may have incidental contact w/ two-year college prospective student-athletes being honored at the banquet, provided no recruiting conversation occurs.
  • April 29 – May 3, 2020
    • Except: An institution’s authorized coaching staff members (see Bylaw 11.7.6) may evaluate on only one day and may attend only one event on that day during this period. Such an event shall occur within a 30-mile radius of the site of the championship. Coaches from the same institution who attend such an event shall attend the same event on the same day. Coaches shall not attend events that occur at the same time that any intercollegiate competition in conjunction with the NCAA championship occurs.

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Division I Softball Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019
  • December 4-7, 2019
  • May 26 – June 3, 2020: Dead period; these dates are based on the 2020 NCAA Division 1 Women’s Softball Championship. The dead period remains in effect until the day following the final day of competition, which could be either June 2 or June 3.

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Division I All Other Sports Dead Periods

Women’s Gymnastics Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019, or the Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the fall signing of the National Letter of Intent
  • December 1-30, 2019
  • April 16-19 (noon), 2020, which is the day before the first day of the NCAA Division I Women’s Gymnastics Championships through noon on the day after the championships
  • June 1-15, 2020

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Men’s Ice Hockey Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019, which is the Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the fall signing of the National Letter of Intent
  • April 8-12 (noon), 2020, or the Wednesday prior to the NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Championship through noon on the Sunday after the game

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Women’s Ice Hockey Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019, which is the Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the fall signing of the National Letter of Intent
  • March 19-23 (noon), 2019 (the day prior to the NCAA Division I Women’s Ice Hockey Championship to noon on the day after the match)

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Men’s Soccer Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019 (Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the signing of the National Letter of Intent) 
  • December 13-15, 2019 (Friday through Sunday of the NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship)

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Women’s Soccer Dead Periods

  • November 11-14, 2019 (Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the signing of the National Letter of Intent) 
  • December 15, 2019 – January 5, 2020

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Wrestling Dead Periods

  • July 29 – August 4, 2019 (Monday before the National Wrestling Coaches Association Convention through the day of adjournment of the convention)
  • November 11-14, 2019 (Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the signing of the National Letter of Intent)
  • March 18-22 (noon), 2020 (The day before the first day of the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships to noon on the day after the championships)

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All Other Sports

  • November 11-14, 2019 (Monday through Thursday of the initial week for the fall signing of the National Letter of Intent)
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the U.S. Diving National Championships, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the North American Cup Fencing Championship, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the Junior Olympic Rifle Championships, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.

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Division II Football Dead Periods

  • December 16 (7 am) - 18 (7 am), 2019 (only contact period for junior college recruits)
  • January 13-15, 2020
  • February 3 (7 am) - 5 (7 am), 2020

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Division II Men’s Basketball Dead Periods

  • November 11 (7 am) - 13 (7 am), 2019
  • April 2-7 (noon), 2020

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Division II Women’s Basketball Dead Periods

  • November 11 (7 am) –14 (7 am), 2019
  • April 2-8 (noon), 2020

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Division II All Other Sports Dead Periods

Men’s lacrosse dead periods

  • November 11 (7 am) – 13 (7 am), 2019
  • December 4-9 (noon), 2019
  • May 21-26 (noon), 2020

Other sports dead periods 

  • November 11 (7 a.m.) – 13 (7 a.m.), 2019
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the U.S. Diving National Championships, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the North American Cup Fencing Championship, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.
    • Except: When the dead period occurs during the Junior Olympic Rifle Championships, authorized coach staff members are allowed to watch recruits participating in that competition.

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