After an exaggerated, three-week process, Ole Miss learned that senior quarterback Jeremiah Masoli would be restricted from playing football for the Rebels until 2011, due to an NCAA waiver decision rendered Tuesday afternoon.
The university intends to appeal the decision, citing no case precedents to support the reasons given. The appeal will now be reviewed by an NCAA subcommittee, with a response expected as early as Friday but no later than one week.
“I just want to plead with that subcommittee,” Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt said. “I want them to know what kind of person this young man has been for the last month. Our players want him here. He’s been an outstanding person; he’s been doing the right thing. All he’s done is exactly what he was supposed to do.”
Athletic director Pete Boone said Masoli compiled all the necessary requirements under the code with which waiver transfer is directed, and that there is no requirement stating a student-athlete has to be in good standing with an athletic team an apparent sticking point with the NCAA.
“The question is not part of the waiver application,” Boone said. “We are aware of other athletes with similar issues, but since it isn’t a part of the process, the questions never came up and their waivers were successful.”
Masoli, while obviously disappointed in the ruling, still has faith and a lot of hope that the NCAA can find it in their heart to do the right thing.
“I’m just very hopeful still that the NCAA will do the right thing in my case,” Masoli said. “That’s why the NCAA has the appeal system in place, just to make sure they get things right in certain situations.”