NCAA investigations can be a tough situation for both the player and the team for which they play, because there’s rarely a set timeframe in regards to the decision-making process.
The longer an investigation takes the more it becomes an undeclared suspension so to speak, with the player having to sit until the NCAA reaches a verdict (recall how long Renardo Sidney sat a couple years ago before the NCAA handed down a lengthy suspension).
Texas point guard Myck Kabongo finds himself in that spot, and it was reported that the sophomore would have to sit out the Longhorns’ season opener against Fresno State as a result of the NCAA continuing to look into his relationship with agent Rich Paul.
For a team with just two upperclassmen (seniors Andrew Dick and Dean Melchionni, who played in ten games combined last year) losing the player expected to lead the way is a tough blow heading into Friday’s opener.
And Kabongo won’t be the only player out of the lineup for Texas, as McComas also reported that sophomore forward Jaylen Bond is day-to-day with a sprained right ankle. Bond played in all 34 games for the Longhorns last season, starting five games and averaging 3.4 points and 4.6 rebounds per game.
Losing Bond hurts but the loss of Kabongo is the bigger issue for Texas, especially when considering the fact that you never know how long an NCAA inquiry will take. Freshman Javan Felix is capable of running the show and he’ll be the one who gets the call tomorrow night, but the Longhorns can’t afford for Kabongo to miss an extended period of time.
You could have a spirited discussion over how the NCAA handles investigations, as well as whether or not a third party should handle the enforcement of rules.
But that won’t do Texas (or any other school in a similar situation) much good. All the Longhorns and their fans know for certain is that their point guard won’t play tomorrow night, and they don’t know when he’ll be back either.
Could that open the door for a young Fresno State team hoping to work towards being a formidable team in the Mountain West? Possibly.