NC State's Keatts on Braxton Beverly: 'He deserves to play'
N.C. State is giving the NCAA another chance to declare transfer guard Braxton Beverly eligible to play basketball for the Wolfpack this season.
N.C. State spokesman Fred Demarest said Wednesday night the school has filed a request for reconsideration to the NCAA’s ruling that Beverly must sit out this season.
Beverly, a freshman, has also hired an attorney.
“Braxton is hopeful this new request will be approved so he can suit up for N.C. State,” Beverly’s attorney, Scott Tompsett of Tompsett Collegiate Sports Law, wrote in a statement.
Beverly transferred to N.C. State this summer after enrolling in summer classes at Ohio State last May. He decided to leave Ohio State after Thad Matta was fired as head coach in June.
The NCAA has issued two rulings saying that Beverly must sit out one season as an undergraduate transfer because he received athletic aid from Ohio State.
“Braxton is a young man who has been severely penalized through no fault of his own,” Tompsett wrote. “He did what he was told to do and enrolled briefly at Ohio State last summer, then made an understandable decision to transfer to N.C. State after coach Matta was let go. He should not have to sit out his freshman year for doing nothing more than attending summer school to get a head start on his academics.”
On Monday, Beverly wrote an essay detailing his recruitment to Ohio State and how he enrolled early at Ohio State at Matta’s request after the school’s administration gave Matta a vote of confidence that he’d remain the head coach.
After Matta was fired, Ohio State gave Beverly his release to transfer since he had been recruited by Matta.
In August, after Beverly had enrolled at N.C. State, Matta wrote a letter to the supporting Beverly’s request for a waiver to the NCAA’s year-in-residence requirement that applies to undergraduate transfers.
N.C. State coach Kevin Keatts has been critical of the NCAA’s decision to deny Beverly’s immediate eligibility. Tompsett urged NCAA president Mark Emmert to reverse the decision.
“Dr. Emmert recently acknowledged that the American public has low confidence in the NCAA’s ability to govern collegiate athletics,” Tompsett said. “It is obvious that decisions like the one in this case are a major reason people think the NCAA has lost its sense of justice and fundamental fairness. We hope the NCAA takes this opportunity to do the right thing and makes Braxton immediately eligible to compete for N.C. State.”
Beverly didn’t play in the Wolfpack’s exhibition win over Mars Hill last Friday night. Unless the decision is overturned, he won’t play this Friday night when the Wolfpack open the regular season against VMI at PNC Arena.