Per the formal release from Villanova University Athletics today:
VILLANOVA, Pa. – An NCAA initial eligibility review has determined that freshman forward Omari Spellman (North Royalton, Ohio/St. Thomas More School) will not be eligible to compete for the Wildcats during the 2016-17 basketball season. Spellman will continue to receive an athletic scholarship and practice with the team. He retains four seasons of athletic eligibility.
A news conference, featuring Villanova Director of Athletics Mark Jackson and Head Basketball Coach Jay Wright will be held later today at 2 p.m. in the Pavilion Press Room.
“We are extremely disappointed for Omari,” stated Villanova head coach Jay Wright. “While we don’t agree with the NCAA’s decision, we are members of the association and respect it. We understand why the NCAA felt it had to rule this way.<p>
“We will make a positive out of this for Omari. He will concentrate on his academics and individual development this season. In the long run Omari will be a better student and player for this experience.”
Per NCAA initial eligibility bylaws, a prospective student-athlete must complete their initial eligibility requirements not later than the high school graduation date of his or her class. Despite graduating from high school in 2016 and presenting the same academic qualifications as an NCAA qualifier, the NCAA determined Omari’s status to be an Academic Redshirt.
Interpreting what this really means:
The NCAA, in it's infinite, pathetic "wisdom" has decided that a fully qualified, student-athlete should sit out from playing games for a full year because he played a few high school games while in 8th / 9th grade and then reclassified.
Meanwhile, this same "governing body" has refused to do a thing in response to "student-athletes" at the University of North Carolina admitting that they were provided the opportunity to take bogus classes that helped to maintain their GPA at a level that allowed them to compete on the field/court/etc against student-athletes that actually attended legitimate classes. How was this fair to the other institutions in the NCAA to have to compete against a school that had unqualified "student-athletes"? It wasn't.
The NCAA is a laugh riot ... run by buffoons.
The NCAA model is to collect billions of dollars off of the hard work of un-paid, student-athletes, pay it's "Commissioner" in excess of $1.5M to do much of nothing of value, and pretend not to see when the schools that rake in big cash off of football break the most important rules in their massive book of non-sensical rules.
So what is the impact for Villanova?
- Cats will have four options to play the minutes at the 5 this season - Senior, Darryl Reynolds; Freshman, Dylan Painter, Senior, Kris Jenkins and Sophomore, Eric Paschall
- Omari Spellman will have four years of eligibility starting in the 2017-18 season and will join Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree as a Frosh in that class from an eligibility perspective.
- It is highly unlikely that Villanova will recruit any low post players in the Class of 2017 or the Class of 2018 with 3 solid post players already in the program with either 3 or 4 years of eligibility starting in 2017-18