Braxton Beverly Ruling A Bad Look For NCAA

Late last week, NC State freshman Braxton Beverly was ruled ineligible for the 17-18 season. For those unaware, Beverly’s story is a bit unique. A three-star recruit out of high school, Beverly initially committed to Thad Matta and Ohio State. When Matta resigned, Beverly requested a release from his scholarship, to which the University obliged. Beverly then transferred to NC State.

The above story isn’t that unique. A player commits to a head coach, coach leaves, player seeks another opportunity. It’s part of why the transfer rate is so high right now in college basketball. Seeing as Beverly never played any games for Ohio State, one would think he would be immediately eligible for this season. There was just one problem, in the eyes the NCAA, Beverly had started taken classes at OSU. According to the NCAA, Beverly became an undergraduate student at Ohio State when he started attending classes. Had he never stepped foot inside a classroom, he would be immediately eligible to play this season for NC State.

The ruling in this particular case sheds a bad light on the NCAA. It in essence is punishing an 18-year-old student-athlete for taking classes earlier than necessary. With said transfer rate growing each year, it’s easy to say Beverly should sit for leaving Ohio State. However, how you can you fault a player when the coach he committed to leaves in the middle of the summer?

Good recruiting is about building relationships with players. A player commits to a program largely in part because of the trust a coaching staff builds with them beforehand. Beverly had a bond with Matta that drew him to Ohio State, and then Matta left. Beverly never had one official practice with Ohio State, let alone a game, but because he took initiative to enroll in classes early, he cannot play for his new team.

Braxton Beverly was drawn to OSU in large part to his relationship with Thad Matta. When Matta unexpectedly leaves, why should Beverly suffer?

What Happened To STUDENT-Athletes?

High school and college players are often told countless times that they are students before they are athletes. This situation was an athlete getting to campus early to take classes and get extra work outs in. With this case now setting precedent, why would any player put their academics before athletics now? Why take summer classes if it could affect your eligibility when something unexpected happens?

Beverly and his family were hoping that Matta’s support would help make his transfer case an exception. They hoped the NCAA would sympathize for an 18-year-old who finds himself in a rare situation. To no avail however, because the NCAA was stone cold in rejecting the plea. Beverly will be allowed to practice with the team, but it appears his first game action will not come for another year. And the NCAA looks bad for it.

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[…] far this year we have seen a player forced to sit out the year for enrolling in classes early. We have seen a program get away unharmed for players taking fake classes. And now, we have a […]

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[…] right! I wrote an article a couple weeks ago ridiculing the NCAA for the way they handled the Braxton Beverly situation. For those that do not know, Beverly originally enrolled at Ohio State when Thad Matta was still […]

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