Thomas Robinson finally got some good news.
The NCAA has granted a number of waivers from its bylaws, clearing Kansas to aid the sophomore forward and his 9-year old sister, Jayla, after the death of their mother, Lisa, last Friday. Andy Katz first reported the news.
The single mother was raising Jayla in Washington D.C. when she died of an apparent heart attack. Her mother had died last month and he father just last Sunday.
In a statement issued Wednesday, the NCAA said it offered its “deepest sympathies to Thomas Robinson following the tragic events of late in his family. To help support him and his younger sister during this difficult time, the NCAA and the University of Kansas have been working closely together to determine how best to assist during these next several days and beyond.”
Kansas will pay for the funeral, which will be held Thursday in D.C. That’s allowed by NCAA rules. But it also will allow Jayla to return to Lawrence with Thomas at Kansas’ expense, but there are some legal issues that must be addressed.
“The NCAA’s concern for student-athlete welfare in this situation has not only been great but quick and responsive,” Self told Katz. “We understand there are rules and they’ve been very good about doing the right thing.”
Robinson didn’t travel with the team to Colorado for Tuesday’s game, but was on the minds of his teammates during the win. He may not play Saturday against Kansas State, either. He’s going to take care of his sister first.
“We hope he comes back Friday but the one reason to stay is to be with his sister and that’s an important reason,” Self told Katz. “They’ve got to figure it out and hopefully they can work out a split of time so that she feels comfortable.”
Those wishing to aid the family can make contributions to the Lisa Robinson Scholarship Fund, for the benefit of her daughter, Jayla, c/o SNR Denton, 1301 K Street NW, Suite 600, East Tower, Washington, DC 20005-3364. Contributions to the Lisa Robinson Scholarship Fund are nondeductible for tax purposes.
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