NCAA grants waiver for teams playing more than four non-Division I opponents

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There was a report out yesterday that the NCAA would be deciding soon on whether or not to waive an obscure rule that would force teams in smaller leagues to forfeit games.

In summation: Division I teams cannot play more than four non-Division I teams in a season. Transitional Division I members (Abilene Christian, Incarnate Word, Grand Canyon and UMass-Lowell) count as non-Division I teams despite playing in Division I conference this season. This would have forced Oral Roberts, Stephen F. Austin, Vermont, Maine and others to forfeit league games without receiving a waiver.

Today, the ruling became official.

All NCAA teams would be receiving the waiver.

“Today, the NCAA’s Subcommittee for Legislative Relief formally approved a waiver that we submitted on the membership’s behalf absolving all Division I basketball programs, including Maine’s and Vermont’s men’s teams, from penalty for having more than four non-Division I opponents on their schedules,” America East commissioner America East commissioner Amy Huchthausen said in a statement. “We very much appreciate the NCAA staff’s efforts to expedite a review of this case and are extremely pleased with the decision, which we believe is fair and appropriate given the circumstances.”

The timing was, well, perfect?

A bit too late maybe be a better way to put it. Vermont has already played UMass-Lowell once this season, which was their fifth-game against a non-Division I opponent.

Oral Roberts, who already announced that they would be forced to forfeit Southland games against Incarnate Word and Abilene Christian, has ACU on their schedule on Thursday. Per a source, they traveled down to Abilene, TX, on Wednesday night with no idea whether or not they would actually be able to play the game.

Utah lands top-75 center Jayce Johnson

Larry Krystkowiak
AP Photo
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Utah picked up its center of the future on Monday as four-star center Jayce Johnson pledged to the Runnin’ Utes, a source confirmed to The 7-foot Johnson recently cut his list to Cal, Colorado and Utah with the possibility of reclassifying to the Class of 2015.

Regarded as the No. 67 overall prospect in the Class of 2016, Johnson will look to attend Utah in December as a walk-on who will redshirt. While Johnson likely won’t play this season, he does give head coach Larry Krystkowiak another big man to use in practice to go against sophomore center Jakob Poeltl. A solid long-term prospect, Johnson has a good frame to add weight and he’s also skilled finishing with both hands. Utah now has its replacement for Poeltl if he opts to leave for the NBA after the season and he gets an extra semester to work with the program.

Johnson is coming off of his official visit to Utah this weekend as he joins junior college guard Jojo Zamora in the Class of 2016.


PHOTO: South Carolina gets new uniforms

Frank Martin
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South Carolina debuted some new uniforms early this week as the school is going with a fresh look and three color ways.

They’re also going to with the “Carolina” branding this season, but I think these new uniforms look pretty cool.