Memphis basketball star James Wiseman was ruled ineligible by the NCAA on Friday. However, a temporary restraining order issued by a court soon thereafter will allow him to play Friday night when the team takes on Illinois-Chicago.
After the NCAA had discovered that Memphis head coach Penny Hardaway had provided Wiseman’s family with $11,500 to help them move to Memphis, they had deemed Wiseman ineligible and stated that Hardaway was a booster.
Hardaway, who is in his second season as head coach, had previously coached Wiseman while they were with Team Penny/Bluff City Legends and at East High School in Memphis. It was with those programs that Wiseman would develop, eventually earning him the No. 1 spot on top of ESPN’s college recruit rankings. Currently, the 7’1 center is the No. 1 prospect for next year’s NBA Draft.
In May, the NCAA had ruled Wiseman eligible, but upon further investigation, they had discovered the funds and have since changed their verdict. It is unknown how long the current investigation will take, but it most likely won’t drag on too long. If Wiseman is indeed ruled ineligible for the year, it will most likely not affect his draft status and could still go first overall the Draft.
In his debut against South Carolina State, Wiseman was stellar, finishing with 28 points, 11 rebounds and 3 blocks in just 22 minutes.