PHILADELPHIA — On Thursday evening, ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman broke the news that Jordan Mickey, an LSU signee, and Karviar Shepherd, a TCU signee, were ruled non-qualifiers by the NCAA, meaning that they will be unable to play this season.
Mickey and Shepherd both played at Deion Sanders’ charter school, Prime Prep, in Dallas, TX.
“We haven’t heard anything yet from the NCAA,” Ray Forsett, Prime Prep’s head coach, told NBCSports.com. “We’re holding out hope that they’ll make the right decision for the kids involved.”
The reason why Mickey and Shepherd were ruled ineligible is unclear to Forsett. Prime Prep was approved as a “Regular Instructional Open Enrollment Charter” by the Texas Education Agency and the State Board of Education. The NCAA visited the school in January to do an initial review, according to Forsett. On January 8th, Prime Prep posted a release on their website which announced that the school had “successfully completed all preliminary steps necessary for NCAA membership” and that as a result, “all prospective student athletes are eligible for individual review through the NCAA initial eligibility process”. You can see the list of NCAA approved core courses that Prime Prep offers here.
“It’s shocking,” Forsett said.
Two other Prime Prep players are enrolling at Division I schools this fall: Shimane Thomas, who is headed to Tennessee Tech, and Damon Collins, who is off to Howard.
The bigger concern for the school is where they go from here if Goodman’s report proves to be correct. If Shepherd and Mickey are, in fact, non-qualifiers as a result of their time at Prime Prep, what does that mean for the future of Emmanuel Mudiay, a top five recruit in the Class of 2014, and Elijah Thomas, a top 10 recruit in the Class of 2015.
“After I finish playing here, I’m going to go to the school and see what’s up. I’ll take it from there,” he told NBCSports.com. “I’m going to call Deion himself. I’m definitely going to talk to him. We’re close enough that we can talk about anything.”
Mudiay has already had other prep schools reach out to him.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.