Joe Spurlin

Joe Spurlin, a promising junior-college safety who committed to walk on at the University of Kentucky this fall, has been ruled ineligible by the university. However that doesn't mean Big Blue fans have seen the last of the speedy safety.

Joe Spurlin, a promising junior-college safety who committed to walk on at the University of Kentucky this fall, has been ruled ineligible by the university.

Mitch Barnhart, Kentucky's Director of Athletics, said his department would stand by the school's decision, but could not comment about specifics of Spurlin's admissions rejection, citing the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (Buckley Amendment), which protects the privacy of students' educational records.

"The University of Kentucky Athletics Association always will comply with the standards set forth by the NCAA Clearinghouse and the UK Admissions Office," Barnhart said. "If a prospective student-athlete does not meet these standards, that student-athlete cannot participate as a Wildcat."

A 2002 graduate of Foothill High School in Palo Pedro, Calif., Spurlin played one season at Shasta College in Redding, Calif., then transferred to Bakersfield (Calif.) College, where he redshirted last season. Spurlin caught the eyes of Wildcat coaches during a junior-college combine on the Kentucky campus.

"It has been a very disappointing situation. I don't think that all of my credits from Shasta College were taken into account but I am not really sure. I know going to two different juco's could have caused confusion" Spurlin said yesterday.

Despite the fact that Spurlin could not play this year for Guy Morriss he is still interested in returning in the future. "I developed some very good friendships with the players and I believe the coaches are outstanding, if they offer me a scholarship for next year I will probably be back in December in time for spring ball. There is no doubt in my mind I can compete for a starting spot next year."

Spurlin will enroll and play at Bakersfield Junior College, which had the top rated defense in the Juco ranks last year.

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