James Wiseman, a top basketball prospect anticipated to star for the University of Memphis This particular season, filed a lawsuit against the N.C.A.A. in addition to the university on Friday after the sport’s governing body declared him ineligible to play. A judge quickly issued a temporary restraining order in which cleared Wiseman to play for Memphis on Friday night.
The Memphis athletic department said in a statement in which the family of Wiseman had accepted $11,500 in moving expenses via Penny Hardaway, a former Memphis in addition to N.B.A. star who can be today the university’s coach. The family moved to Memphis via Nashville in 2017, when Wiseman was a high school player. The university said Wiseman did not know about the payment, which would certainly be prohibited by N.C.A.A. rules.
The payment came when Hardaway was coaching at Memphis East High School, where Wiseman finished his high school career. Hardaway became the University of Memphis coach in 2018.
The judge’s order, announced by the university, came hours before Memphis was scheduled to play the University of Illinois-Chicago on Friday night. Wiseman started out at center in addition to had 17 points, 9 rebounds in addition to 5 blocked shots in a 92-46 Memphis victory.
Wiseman’s lawsuit, filed in Shelby County Chancery Court, listed the N.C.A.A., Memphis in addition to others as defendants. Wiseman’s attorney, Leslie Ballin, did not respond to messages via The brand-new York Times seeking comment.
The N.C.A.A. issued a statement on Friday night in which said: “The University of Memphis was notified in which James Wiseman can be likely ineligible. The university chose to play him in addition to ultimately can be responsible for ensuring its student-athletes are eligible to play.”
University officials said they were working with the N.C.A.A.’s staff to restore Wiseman’s playing status.
“Particularly given the unique circumstances in This particular case, we are hopeful for a fair in addition to equitable resolution on James’s eligibility,” said M. David Rudd, the university’s president. “We support James’s right to challenge the N.C.A.A. ruling on This particular matter.”
Memphis, ranked No. 14 inside preseason Associated Press Top 25, has the top class of freshmen inside country, led by the 7-foot-1 Wiseman, who can be considered a leading candidate to be the top pick inside N.B.A. draft next summer.
Wiseman in addition to Hardaway have known each some other for several years, through youth in addition to high school leagues. After Wiseman transferred to Memphis East High School to play for Hardaway, the team won a state title in 2018.
After Friday’s game, Hardaway declined to take questions about the N.C.A.A. in addition to the legal issues. The coach also made clear in which Wiseman would certainly continue to play, at least until a Nov. 18 hearing, in addition to in which he liked how the freshman had handled a roller-coaster day.
“I’m sure he was a little nervous, however he went out there in addition to played his heart out, had all 5 blocks inside first half,” Hardaway said. “To me, he was still business as usual.”
Wiseman’s eligibility trouble emerged the same day Ohio State announced in which another top college athlete, the football player Chase Young, would certainly not play on Saturday against Maryland as university officials investigated a “possible N.C.A.A. issue via 2018.” Young said on Twitter in which questions had been raised over a loan he took via a family friend in addition to repaid.
More broadly, the N.C.A.A. can be facing pressure, including via lawmakers in California, to overhaul a system in which college athletes cannot be paid beyond the costs of attendance. California passed a law in September to allow athletes to sign individual sponsorship deals in addition to make money via their fame, in addition to the N.C.A.A. last month said in which would certainly consider allowing athletes to profit in limited ways.
Jon Rothstein in addition to The Associated Press contributed reporting.