Memphis Says Star Freshman James Wiseman Declared Ineligible And Will Be Held Out Of Games

PORTLAND, OREGON - NOVEMBER 12: James Wiseman #32 of the Memphis Tigers walks up court during the first half of the game against the Oregon Ducks between the Oregon Ducks and Memphis Grizzlies at Moda Center on November 12, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

Memphis Says Star Freshman James Wiseman Declared Ineligible And Will Be Held Out Of Games

The team is awaiting reinstatement and Wiseman’s legal team has dropped the lawsuit for now.

Published November 14, 2019

Written by Jarod Hector

The University of Memphis announced that star freshman, James Wiseman, has been deemed ineligible and will be withheld from games, according to ESPN’s Jeff Borzello.

The NCAA notified Memphis that Wiseman was likely ineligible prior to the start of the season. But the university and head coach Penny Hardaway decided to play him anyway. 

Wiseman and his legal team filed a suit against the NCAA, and a Shelby County judge granted Wiseman a temporary restraining order last Friday (November 8). 

Related: NCAA Says Memphis’ James Wiseman Is ‘Likely Ineligible,’ Head Coach Penny Hardaway Plays Him Anyway

The ineligibility stems from money that Wiseman’s mother accepted from Hardaway in 2017, before he was the university head coach, to move the family from Nashville to Memphis. 

Hardaway is listed as a booster by the NCAA because of a million dollar donation he made in 2008. 

The moving expenses, $11,500 paid to Wiseman’s mother, would constitute an illegal benefit according to the NCAA bylaws. 

Memphis and Wiseman will await reinstatement proceedings by the NCAA, and as such Wiseman has dropped his suit, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic

Wiseman’s legal team was adamant about the suit when they filed, but his reinstatement could not move forward while a suit was pending, according to ESPN’s Jay Bilas.

As of now, Wiseman will practice and train with the team but will not play in any games. 

The suit can always be refiled if the reinstatement proceedings don’t go favorably for Wiseman.

Photo: Steve Dykes/Getty Images

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