Since the news broke that 2017 PG Braxton Beverly (late NC State commit) might have to sit out a year, Wolfpack fans have been questioning why the NCAA would do something like that to a kid?
If you’re unclear of what we mean, Beverly committed to Ohio State in early June. In late June, OSU fired head coach Thad Matta. Beverly decided to ask for his release, which he was granted. He then committed to NC State last week. The catch is that Beverly had already enrolled in summer classes at OSU. Now, the NCAA is trying to treat the situation like a ‘transfer,’ meaning he would have to sit out a year.
Obviously, NC State is trying to fight this decision and Pack fans are livid. Now, the News & Observer has weighed in.
It’s fine for the NCAA to do its due diligence here. A player who enrolls shouldn’t have the freedom to transfer at will. There’s a dividing line that needs to be established, and an academic year should count as an academic year. But when there’s good reason for it – like a coach getting fired before the player even puts the uniform on, and the school being willing to let the player go, as it should – the NCAA shouldn’t stand in his way.
There isn’t a lot of precedent here because there haven’t been many examples of coaches getting fired on their day off. But if a school is willing to let a recruit move on after firing the coach who recruited him, the NCAA shouldn’t stand in the player’s way on what’s essentially a technicality – just as a school shouldn’t stand in the way of a transfer who has completed his undergraduate education, as Pittsburgh tried to do with Cameron Johnson this summer before he was eventually allowed to transfer to North Carolina.
The NCAA hasn’t officially ruled yet, but the thought is that they were initially leaning towards treating this as a transfer. We still are likely a month or two away from getting the final word, but should we really have to deal with this? Would a higher profile school have to deal with this? ESPN’s Fraschilla doesn’t think so.
Take the "State" off his jersey & he'll be eligible. https://t.co/sYifK8F9OD
— Fran Fraschilla (@franfraschilla) August 1, 2017
That’s a well-deserved cheap shot at the Tarheels and their ‘above the law’ reputation. So it’s not just NC State fans chirping about the double-standards that the NCAA seems to be fine with. This is a top analyst at ESPN.
The real question is, even with all this media backlash, will it matter? Will the NCAA do the right thing and let Beverly suit up this season, or will this just be another example of the NCAA working in a black and white world that at times, punishes the kids who just want to play basketball.