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Posted at 11:08 AM ET, 10/14/2011

Alex Len to take part in Maryland Madness, then sit as his eligibility is decided

Maryland fans will get a first peek at Alex Len, the 7-foot-1 Ukrainian center whose eligibility for compete for the Terrapins is pending, during Maryland Madness on Friday night.

But it may be Len’s final time on court with the Terrapins for some time.

Len’s case has been under review by the NCAA Eligibility Center for 45 days, with questions still unresolved about his amateur status.

Under NCAA rules, players whose eligibility is pending can practice with their teams for no more than 45 days. Len started working out with the Terrapins in August, and the clock on his opportunity expires at midnight Friday.

That makes it possible for him to take part in the festivities at Comcast Center up until midnight. But starting Saturday, he won’t be able to practice or compete for the Terrapins until the NCAA issues a ruling on his case.

An earlier Terrapins Insider post said that Len wouldn’t be available for Maryland Madness.

According to an NCAA spokesman, a resolution isn’t close because a few remaining documents from the Ukraine haven’t yet been received. If the NCAA’s initial ruling is favorable, Len will become Maryland’s ninth scholarship player on a roster that badly needs his size and skills.

If the ruling is unfavorable, Maryland is expected to appeal the decision on Len’s behalf. At that point, he’d be eligible to resume practicing with the team — but not permitted to play — until the appeal is resolved. The Terrapins open the regular season Nov. 13 against UNC Wilmington.

Friday’s Maryland Madness ceremonies get under way at 9:30 p.m. The Comcast Center doors open at 9 p.m. The highlight is expected to be the appearance of nearly all members of the 2002 NCAA championship team and a star-studded alumni game featuring Memphis Grizzlies point guard Greivis Vasquez, Steve Francis, Juan Dixon, Eric Hayes, Byron Mouton and others.

By  |  11:08 AM ET, 10/14/2011

 
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