Hey everyone this week I am going to give nerd out a little bit and talk about the must have tech platform for any collegiate athletic depart. This platform is JumpForward. JumpForward provides a centralized communication service for athletic department’s compliance office and student-athletes, and is currently used by 150,000 athletes and 175 college athletic departments.
The premise behind JumpForward starts with four main functionalities. These are compliance forms, practice logs, complimentary tickets and class schedules. Here at BC we utilize all of these except for the class schedule function schedule since this is already on our Agora Portal.
Under compliance forms we on athletics teams such as the football team must fill out what seems like endless forms throughout the year, so that we may maintain our amateur eligibility. The compliance office submits the electronic forms onto JumpForward, and then it is emailed out to all of the specific athletes that are required to fill it out. The athletes’ student-emails are linked to their JumpForward accounts, and whenever the forms are posted they get an email notification. While this seems like a basic functionality, it is actually on of the biggest changes in college compliance in the past ten years. Before JumpForward and other similar programs, college athletes would have to file into the compliance office and sign their forms one by one in pen. Needless to say when there were 100 football players in a tiny office all trying to fill out the same 40 page form things were a complete mess. Along with this, since JumpForward is an algorithm based program it does not allowed athletes to turn in incomplete forms and accounts for any possible human error.
Next under the practice log tab is my personal least favorite form. These forms are randomly assigned to athletes on each team and are just pictures of our teams weekly schedule. Generally 5 weeks are assigned at a time and each student athlete has to review every day to make sure that our coaches are reporting an accurate time count of practice and training hours to the NCAA. While this is a hassle during the middle of the busy week, JumpForward saves student-athletes time and allows them to do these forms anywhere at anytime during the week, and provides these schedules in a centralized place with a few yes or no answers.
Lastly, under comp forms we get to assign game tickets to our guests. These are free tickets we can use on anyone but sports agents, donors or anyone who offers use something of monetary value for them. For home games the football team gets 4 and for away games we get 2.
JumpForward expedites the ticket assigning process just as it does everything else, but this section is JumpForward’s most efficient in my opinion. In this ticket assigning process, not only does it take 30 seconds for the athletes, but also it guarantees that athletes are giving the tickets to the people they say they are. JumpForward makes athletes specify who they are inviting and make them enter info about each guest such as their in their relation, email and phone number. When people show up to the game to claim these tickets they must match up and this takes an immense amount of stress off compliance because many previous NCAA scandals have revolved around giving away free tickets along with other commodities. Along with this, the best functionality of JumpFoward is that it allows the athletes to transfer tickets to one another. This is a huge help when we play in different parts of the country because many guys have lots of family come when we play away games near their homes.
Overall there is a constantly increasing role for communication between athletic department’s compliance teams and student-athletes, due to increasing NCAA regulations. Athletic departments can utilize JumpForward to communicate efficiently, help all student-athletes stay eligible and most importantly keep them happy.