The NCAA has ruled UNLV freshman forward Derrick Jones Jr. ineligible, according to Mark Anderson of the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Per the report, Jones’ eligibility issue stems from the testing site in Baltimore where he took his ACT exam. UNLV has not commented on the situation, but Jones’ attorney Don Jackson lambasted the NCAA in a statement.
“Derrick took the ACT and made a satisfactory score,” Jackson said. “Under no circumstances will he be compelled to further substantiate his performance on the standardized test. It is clear (both from the timing of the ACT’s actions and from Todd Leyden’s correspondence of September 4, 2015, that the NCAA prompted the ACT’s actions. The recent actions appear to be a blatant, calculated effort to impact post-season play and to assure that UNLV plays without an important player in next week’s post season tournament.”
A four-star talent from Philadelphia who played his college ball in Washington DC, Jones averaged 11.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game while shooting nearly 59 percent from the field his freshman season. UNLV had an average season in going 17-13 (8-9 Mountain West), but easily could have made a deep run in the Mountain West tournament depending on certain chips falling into place.
But now that one of the Runnin’ Rebels star freshmen is unable to play, with his lawyer going so far as to imply racism in the NCAA’s investigation, that seems doubtful.
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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports