Sam Cassell Jr. will not play for the Maryland Terrapins this year.
Questions emerged over Cassell's eligibility to play for the Terps over the past few weeks as the NCAA investigated his high school transcripts. The classes in question were taken while Cassell played at Notre Dame Prep high school in Fitchburg, Mass. The NCAA determined that some classes Cassell took while at Notre Dame Prep would not qualify for athletic participation under NCAA guidelines.
Cassell, an incoming freshman, was expected to compete for minutes in the Terps backcourt with returning players Pe'Shon Howard and Nick Faust as well as fellow newcomers Seth Allen and Logan Aronhalt.
Maryland officials twice appealed the NCAA's decision on Cassell, but found little help from the athletic governing body.
"Weve exhausted every option and made our best effort," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said in a news release. "Im very pleased with the work that our compliance staff put in on Sams behalf. Obviously, were very disappointed that he will be unable to attend the University of Maryland at this time and be a part of our basketball program. We will continue to support Sam and his family in any way that we can as they determine their next steps."
Cassell's father, former NBA player and current Washington Wizard assistant coach Sam Cassell, disagreed with the NCAA ruling.
"The NCAA just wants kids to fail. It's not these kids' fault," Cassell told CBS Sports. "The NCAA can't penalize Notre Dame Prep, so they are squashing the kids dreams."
Reports show that other students took the same courses as Cassell and were allowed to play Division I basketball, according to CBS.
"But what the NCAA has done isn't right," Cassell said. "What they do to kids isn't right."
Cassell Jr.'s next move is not currently known, but he has options of trying to qualify with a different school or attending junior college.
On Wednesday, the Wizards traded Marcus Thornton, Andrew Nicholson and a lottery-protected first-round pick to Brooklyn for swingman Bojan Bogdanovic and D-League standout Chris McCullough.
CSN Wizards Insider J. Michael has been dissecting the trade from every angle. Up next: Why a first-round pick was needed to get the deal done.
Was giving up a first-round pick necessary?
Look at Andrew Nicholson's contract. In today's exploding salary cap, the final number wasn't the biggest handicap as much as it was the years on his deal. He not only occupied a roster spot but took up space that can be applied to the contract the Wizards are going to have to offer Porter now that he'll be one of the top free agents on the market (restricted).
If the Wizards finish in top 3 in the East, the pick will be in the mid-20s. This is a deep draft, but it made relinquishing the pick easier. Had this been the No. 13 pick in the 2017 draft that they gave up in 2016 for Markieff Morris that's a different issue. Last year's draft wasn't that strong especially beyond the first 10 picks. This one is.
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Why is the pick protected?
In the worst-case scenario that the Wizards implode in the final 27 games of the season despite this trade and miss the playoffs, the Nets don't get the pick. Now, that won't happen but it's better to be safe than sorry. Crazy things happen.
Following the unexpected retirement of linebacker Zach Orr, the Baltimore Ravens are looking elsewhere to fill their roster out with another pass rusher.
Apparently their answer may be just up I-95.
The Philadelphia Eagles perhaps are looking to part ways with veteran linebacker Connor Barwin since their defense has switched to a 4-3 scheme. One of the teams looking at Barwin, is none other than the Ravens.
As an eight-year veteran, Barwin has split his time with both the Eagles and the Houston Texans. In his career he has 240 total tackles and 49.5 sacks and was consistently getting over 40 a season until he was moved to defensive end last year when Philadelphia switched defensive fronts. In 2016 he only recorded 20 tackles.
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Changing schemes under new head coach Doug Pederson, and a contract worth $17 million over the next two seasons, has led to Barwin not having the output the Eagles are paying him. If the Eagles are open to a trade, it will be hard to gauge what the Ravens will be willing to give up for him. Along with Baltimore, the Indianapolis Colts and the Green Bay Packers are interested in the former second round draft pick.
With Elvis Dumervil's and Terrell Suggs combining to make over $10 million next season, it will be hard to find space for another expensive linebacker. It would be more likely for the Ravens to pick up Barwin, if the Eagles were to release the 30-year-old.
The loss of Orr means that the team is losing 89 tackles from the interior of the defense that he recorded last season. Unless the team finds another linebacker before the draft, it may become a necessary pick up in the draft.
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