Ben Howland announced on Wednesday that UCLA has officially appealed the NCAA’s ruling in regard to Shabazz Muhammad’s eligibility.
The appeal is expected to be heard on Friday, and if the appeals committee sides with the Bruins, Muhammad could become immediately eligible. That, according to the LA Times, could end up happening on Friday as well. Since the season has already begun, the process will be expedited. UCLA will play Georgetown in the Legends Classic in New York on Monday. (I’ll be covering that game, so I’m hoping he gets eligible.)
Muhammad was ruled ineligible by the NCAA just hours before the Bruins kicked off their season against Indiana State last Friday. He was found to have received illegal benefits in order to take unofficial visits to North Carolina and Duke while he was being recruited. The NCAA did not make a final ruling, however, they simply said that Shabazz was not ineligible while they continued their investigation.
The Muhammad family released a statement on Monday that said, among other things, that the NCAA had already approved the payment.
Friday afternoon the field for the 2016 AdvoCare Invitational in Orlando was announced, with Puerto Rico Tip-Off champion Miami being one of the eight teams involved.
Joining Jim Larrañaga’s Hurricanes in Orlando will be Florida, Gonzaga, Indiana State, Iowa State, Quinnipiac, Seton Hall and Stanford. Gonzaga has won the event in each of its prior two appearances, doing so in 2008 and 2012.
Each of the other seven teams will be making their first appearance at the AdvoCare Invitational.
Another in-season tournament field for next season was revealed, as the DirecTV Wooden Legacy announced the eight teams that will make the trip to Fullerton, California.
UCLA, which was led to ten national titles by the event’s namesake, will take part as well CSUN, Dayton, Nebraska, New Mexico, Portland, Texas A&M and Virginia Tech. Six of the eight teams have made prior appearances in the event, with Dayton and Nebraska being the two programs who will make their DirecTV Wooden Legacy debuts next season.
Portland and Virginia Tech reached the title game in their prior appearances, with the Pilots losing to West Virginia in 2009 and the Hokies falling to UNLV in 2010.