NCAA and UTK should allow the Zeigler family keep all GoFundMe house fire donations

NCAA and UTK should allow the Zeigler family keep all GoFundMe house fire donations

16 have signed. Let’s get to 25!
Petition to
NCAA and

Why this petition matters

Started by Jackie R

NCAA & UTK: This is a humanitarian crisis, not an athlete regulation issue. Release the full GoFundMe to the Zeigler family immediately.


  • The Zeigler family of Far Rockaway and Wyandanch, NY, lost everything in a house fire on Feb, 26, 2022.
  • Zakai Zeigler, 19, plays basketball for the University of Tennessee and the UTK community rallied to help the Ziegler family in their hour of need, raising $362,777 in a GoFundMe.
  • Due to NCAA regulations, and because the Zeigler family received help from the athletics department at the University, the family might not be allowed to keep all of the donated funds. (Source: Newsday, March 9 2022)
  • This petition is to request that the NCAA and University of Tennessee reach an understanding that the Zeigler family should be allowed to keep all of the money raised in the GoFundMe. 


  1. Safe and affordable housing is a basic human necessity.
  2. The money in the GoFundMe came from good samaritans who wished those funds to be used by the family in need, to alleviate their immediate housing crisis.
  3. Humanitarian crises should not be subject to NCAA rules and regulations on boosters, gifts, or other incentive deterrents. 


  1. GoFundMe donors gave money to this family specifically, for a specific cause. Donor money should always go where the donor intended.
  2. The NCAA and university athletic department are not aid agencies; they are not appropriate arbiters of private charitable donations.
  3. The Zeigler family lost everything, it's unconscionable that any organization should suggest tangential reasons to justify minimizing help offered to the family. 


The Zeigler family has a clear and urgent need for the entire $362,777 raised in the GoFundMe.

The NCAA and UTK should recognize this as the humanitarian crisis that it is. 

Disclaimer: The Zeigler family had no role in the drafting of this petition.

16 have signed. Let’s get to 25!