Braxton Beverly never imagined going to class could get him in trouble with the NCAA.
But after starting classes at Ohio State in May and transferring to N.C. State in July, the freshman guard will have to sit out the upcoming college basketball season.
The NCAA ruled Beverly ineligible for the season on Friday. N.C. State plans to appeal the decision.
“I’m devastated by this decision, it’s incredibly unfair,” Beverly said in a statement released by the school. “I appreciate N.C. State and the work being done here to appeal this decision. My hope is that it gets resolved, and I can be eligible to play this season.”
First-year N.C. State coach Kevin Keatts was disappointed in the NCAA’s decision.
“We’ll appeal this and hopefully it yields a different result,” Keatts said in a statement released by N.C. State.
Beverly, a 6-foot shooting guard from Hazard, Ky., will still have four years of eligibility with the Wolfpack.
Beverly and N.C. State had hoped he would be able to play right away after the unusual circumstances led to his departure from Ohio State. Buckeyes coach Thad Matta resigned on June 5.
Beverly, rated a three-star prospect by 247 Sports, had already started classes at Ohio State at that point. Ohio State hired new coach Chris Holtmann four days later. Holtmann gave Beverly his release from his commitment.
“One day you’re starting college, six weeks later, you’re transferring,” Beverly said last month at N.C. State’s media day.
By going to class, Beverly triggered NCAA undergraduate transfer rules. If he hadn’t started classes, like freshman guard Lavar Batts – who had originally committed to VCU – Beverly would not have had any issues with the NCAA.
“If worst comes to worst, I have to sit out,” Beverly said at media day. “I knew that could be a possibility coming into this situation.”
Beverly had a standout two-year career at Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Va. His coach at Hargrave was current N.C. State assistant A.W. Hamilton.
Beverly averaged 20.3 points and 7.1 assists in leading Hargrave to a 90-3 record in two seasons. Keatts, whose system relies on the 3-pointer, could use Beverly’s outside touch.
Keatts and Beverly had hoped an appeal by Matta to the NCAA, would help Beverly’s case. Matta sent a letter to the NCAA on Beverly’s behalf.
Apparently, the NCAA was unmoved.
“He just wanted to help,” Beverly said. “It’s just a tough situation for everybody.”
Joe Giglio: 919-829-8938, @jwgiglio