SMU v Oklahoma State

Okla St.’s J.P. Olukemi granted a full-year of eligibility by the NCAA

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J.P. Olukemi was embroiled in one of the weirder eligibility appeals I’ve come across.

The high school that Olukemi was attending got shut down in the middle of a school year, so the coaches at the program sent him off to a Junior College to finish up that academic year. He never played basketball at the first JuCo he went to, transferring to a different JuCo where he began playing basketball.

But the way the NCAA rules work, his five-year clock — you have five years to use up four seasons of eligibility — started ticking when he enrolled at the first JuCo. Fast forward five years to this season, and Olukemi’s eligibility was scheduled to run out at the end of the first semester.

Luckily, it appears as if he got a waiver:

This is huge news for the Pokes.

Marcus Smart and Le’Bryan Nash are a great 1-2 punch, but without a strong supporting cast, this team won’t go far. With Brian Williams already out for the year with a wrist injury, Oklahoma State couldn’t afford not having Olukemi the second half of the season.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.

Henry Ellenson wins Marquette Madness dunk contest

Steve Wojciechowski
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Marquette freshman forward Henry Ellenson won the Marquette Madness slam dunk contest on Friday night with a between the legs dunk.

The 6-foot-10 Ellenson, the top recruit in Steve Wojciechowski’s freshmen class, defeated sophomore Sandy Cohen, fellow freshman Sacar Anim and Wally Ellenson, his older brother.

Ellenson joins the Golden Eagles as the No. 11 overall recruit in the Class of 2015.

Bill Self signs $10,000 check for KU student


Late Night in the Phog is typically a night to remember for Kansas fans. For Kansas student Jerrod Martin Castro, Friday night’s event is one he won’t forget.

Castro, a sophomore, was selected as a contestant for a $10,000 giveaway. The only thing standing in the way of a big payday was a half-court shot. Brennan Bechard, the Kansas director of basketball operations, attempted the long-distance shot and hit nothing but net.

Kansas head coach Bill Self signed a $10,000 check on the spot.