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Jose Perez has been denied immediate eligiblity for 2022 after transferring to West Virginia in November. The NCAA‘s decision is just another example of ludicrous rulings that hurt the very athletes it vows to protect.
Perez, a fifth-year senior, as a former unranked recruit from the Bronx. He committed to play for Gardner-Webb in 2017 and enrolled as a freshman in 2018.
The 6-foot-5, 210-pound shooting guard made an immediate impact for the Runnin’ Bulldogs and averaged 15.1 points, three assists and 5.7 rebounds per game in year one. Those numbers only improved as a sophomore and Perez garnered a lot of interest from high major programs.
As a result of his play, Perez earned the opportunity to move up and transferred to Marquette in 2020. However, after averaging just 11.3 minutes in 10 games played for the Golden Eagles, he chose to seek another opportunity elsewhere and transferred to Manhattan.
Perez returned to form with the Jaspers in 2021/22 and averaged 18.9 points points per game with 4.5 assists and 3.2 rebounds. It was his best year on the collegiate level by a large margin.
Although Perez could have left the MAAC and tried to get back to the high major level, he chose to stick with the program for his senior year. Until he didn’t.
Head coach Steve Masiello, who recruited Perez to Manhattan and coached him last season, was fired. The decision came just two weeks before the season.
Jose Perez didn’t want to play for an interim head coach.
With Masiello gone, Perez no longer wanted to stay with the Jaspers and re-entered the transfer portal. He found a new home with West Virginia and enrolled in November for the spring semester.
Despite 10 games having already been played, Perez has not seen the court. The three-time transfer was awaiting a ruling on his eligibility from the NCAA.
It came on Friday and it was not good news.
Perez was denied immediate eligibility and will not be able to play for the Mountaineers this season. He will appeal.
Perez can practice with the team, but he can’t see the court in a live game.
“We are disappointed by the news that we received this afternoon from the NCAA,” head coach Bob Huggins said in a statement. “All of Mountaineer Basketball is hurting for Jose.”
Manhattan says that it processed all of the paperwork correctly. As does West Virginia.
Perez is bummed. And rightfully so.
I did nothing but put my blood sweat tears into that college place was home and due to them firing basically a coach who took me in as his son just got no words … not going to say too much.— Jose Perez on Twitter
There is a chance that the NCAA could do the right thing here, but the odds are slim. It has denied an athlete, whose coach was fired 14 days before the start of the season, a chance to play.
What a shame.