Prospective center Len expects NCAA eligibility ruling Tuesday

October 22, 2011

After waiting all day and night Friday for a ruling from the NCAA on his eligibility, Alex Len tweeted that he expects the process to continue into next week.

“The ncaa hasn’t made a decision yet but hopefully by next Tuesday,” Len tweeted around midnight Friday.

Len, the 7-1 center from Urkaine whom Maryland hopes to add to its roster this season, had ramped up speculation that a decision would come Friday by tweeting two words at roughly 9 a.m. He wrote: “big day.”

That was soon followed by a tweet of “good luck bro” from sophomore guard Pe’Shon Howard and good wishes, as well, from senior guard Sean Mosley.

Around 3 p.m., Len tweeted a photo of his Boston Market lunch bag. Then, late afternoon: “nothing yet L”

Len has been unable to practice with the Terrapins since Oct. 15, when his NCAA-allotted 45-day window for participating while his eligibility was being evaluating came to an end. He had started working out with the Terps in August.

Under NCAA rules, if a decision hasn’t been reached on an athlete’s eligibility after 45 days of deliberation, the player must stop practicing with the squad and coach and only observe.

If the NCAA’s initial decision goes against Len, Maryland is expected to appeal on his behalf. Once an appeal is filed, he can rejoin practice but won’t be able to compete for Maryland.

For now, that leaves the Terps with just eight scholarship players and six walk-ons.

There are two components to establishing NCAA eligibility: Documenting that an athlete is an amateur. Questions about Len’s status have to do with his amateur status, which is often tricky to establish for players from overseas.

Liz Clarke currently covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post, she has also covered five Olympic Games, two World Cups and written extensively about college sports, tennis and auto racing.
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