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Sport Memphis declares James Wiseman ineligible while it works toward resolution with NCAA

19:30  14 november  2019
19:30  14 november  2019 Source:   commercialappeal.com

Report: NCAA declares potential No. 1 overall pick Wiseman ineligible in shock ruling

  Report: NCAA declares potential No. 1 overall pick Wiseman ineligible in shock ruling James Wiseman is 7-1 behemoth and a definite lottery pick in the 2020 NBA Draft.It's been a banner day for the NCAA, which this morning influenced Ohio State to hold out star edge rusher Chase Young for taking a loan from a family friend. In their latest actual ruling, they've declared Wiseman ineligible, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

James Wiseman has withdrawn his lawsuit against the NCAA, indicating a settlement could be in the works.

Wiseman and his legal team filed a notice of voluntary nonsuit Thursday in a show of good faith toward the NCAA just days before a hearing in Shelby County Chancery court was scheduled for Monday.

The firms representing Wiseman —  Ballin, Ballin and Fishman, as well as Farese, Farese and Farese — issued a statement: "It has become clear to Mr. Wiseman that the lawsuit he filed last week has become an impediment to the University of Memphis in its efforts to reach a fair and equitable resolution with the NCAA concerning his eligibility status. Therefore, Mr. Wiseman advised his legal team that he wished to withdraw his lawsuit. There will be no further comment at this time."

Memphis' Wiseman has restraining order allowing him to play while he fights NCAA ruling he's ineligible.

  Memphis' Wiseman has restraining order allowing him to play while he fights NCAA ruling he's ineligible. Memphis freshman James Wiseman has restraining order allowing him to play while he fights NCAA ruling he's ineligible.MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Memphis center James Wiseman has a temporary restraining order to play while the heralded freshman fights an NCAA ruling that he's ineligible to play for coach Penny Hardaway and the Tigers.

The University of Memphis subsequently declared Wiseman ineligible for competition and it will immediately apply for his reinstatement, according to a press release issued by the school. Pending that notification, Wiseman will be withheld from competition but will continue to practice with the team.

"The University is confident that the NCAA will render a fair and equitable decision consistent with its mission," according to the school's press release.

If said "fair and equitable decision" cannot be reached, Wiseman's motion to withdraw the lawsuit leaves the door open for a potential refiling. 

The NCAA declared Wiseman, the projected No. 1 overall pick in next year’s NBA Draft, ineligible on Nov. 5. The NCAA’s ruling stemmed from an approximately $11,500 payment made by Memphis coach Penny Hardaway to Wiseman’s mother, Donzaleigh Artis, in the summer of 2017. That’s when she and Wiseman moved from Nashville to Memphis, where he enrolled at East High to play for Hardaway, who was the Mustangs’ coach at the time.

Memphis basketball, Penny Hardaway are taking a big risk with James Wiseman | Giannotto

  Memphis basketball, Penny Hardaway are taking a big risk with James Wiseman | Giannotto There was risk and reward to be had when it came to hiring Penny Hardaway as Memphis men's basketball coach. The risk arrived Friday night.The rewards have been plentiful thus far. A No. 1 recruiting class. A full FedExForum. A national championship contender. A return to relevancy, both locally and across the college basketball world.

Hardaway’s financial aid was designated for “relocation and moving expenses,” according to a lawsuit filed on Wiseman’s behalf on Nov. 8. The lawsuit was filed to obtain a temporary emergency restraining order against the NCAA, which would effectively allow him to continue playing for Memphis until they reached the next step in the legal process.

More: What Penny Hardaway said about James Wiseman in 2018 deposition

The hangup, as far as the NCAA was concerned, was Hardaway’s designation as a University of Memphis booster – a title he earned in 2008 when he donated $1 million to the school’s athletic department to construct a sports hall of fame. NCAA rules state boosters are not permitted to “provide gifts or free or reduced-cost services to a prospect or the prospect’s relatives or guardian.”

According to the lawsuit, Wiseman was initially cleared for freshman eligibility in May. The NCAA later claimed the clearance was made “inadvertently” but said they would not reverse it per their own policy. On Nov. 5, Memphis was notified that Wiseman was likely ineligible. Wiseman’s lawyers claimed the NCAA’s actions were “arbitrary and capricious.”

Opinion: Do the right thing NCAA, and free Memphis' James Wiseman

  Opinion: Do the right thing NCAA, and free Memphis' James Wiseman James Wiseman's NCAA eligibility story at Memphis is complicated, but it has one innocent party: James Wiseman, the likely top pick in 2020 NBA Draft.That’s the compassionate thing — the right thing — for the NCAA to do. Let Wiseman continue to play this season for Memphis and, yes, for Memphis coach Penny Hardaway, who technically, apparently, allegedly broke NCAA rules in 2017 when Wiseman was a high school player and Hardaway was a high school coach.

A timeline of events: James Wiseman, Penny Hardaway and the NCAA

Wiseman has played in all three regular-season games for the Tigers. He leads the team with 19.7 points and 10.7 rebounds per game. Memphis’ decision to allow their star player to continue playing was an awfully risky and incredibly bold move considering the potential fallout. If the school allowed Wiseman to keep playing because of a court’s ruling, it was still risking stiff backlash. The NCAA has a demonstrated history of imposing harsher penalties and greater sanctions against uncooperative member institutions.

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Reach sports writer Jason Munz at jason.munz@commercialappeal.com or on Twitter @munzly.

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: Memphis declares James Wiseman ineligible while it works toward resolution with NCAA

Related slideshow: Best of college basketball season (Provided by imagn)

a person holding a basketball: Colgate Raiders forward Will Rayman (10) controls a rebound against Syracuse Orange forward Bourama Sidibe (34) during the first half at the Carrier Dome on November 13, 2019.

Memphis star freshman James Wiseman suspended 12 games, cleared to play in January .
Memphis star freshman James Wiseman suspended 12 games, cleared to play in JanuaryWiseman, a 7-foot center, is the potential No. 1 pick in next year’s NBA draft.

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