Thursday, October 22, 2009

John Clay Gives Some Good Points on John Wall Situation

Here are some good points from John Clay of the Lexington Herald-Leader:

1. I don’t think this is a huge deal. Wall’s AAU coach, Brian Clifton, is known to be a bit of a controversial figure and it was known that for a time that Clifton had himself certified as an agent. If he was an agent, and paid for Wall’s two trips to UK, and any other unofficial visits, Wall will have to return the money to be declared eligible. Since UK already has been looking into this, that may already be happening. I’d say it’s unlikely that Wall took “substantial benefits” from Clifton. He had to know that would truly jeopardize his long-term eligibility. Remember, this was a very highly-recruited kid. Many people were keeping a watchful eye on the process.

2. Still, my guess is that Wall will have to sit 2-3 games over this. That’s the way the NCAA operates. And it’s not out of the realm that the NCAA will want to use Wall as an example to other high-profile recruits that they need to watch the details as far who pays for what on visits, and they need to stay away from agents.

3. The ill-informed are going to say (are already saying) that this is another John Calipari issue. Another got-cha. In truth, it has little to do with the Kentucky coach. Wall’s two unofficial visits to Lexington, the ones espn.com cites, happened when Billy Gillispie was the Kentucky coach. In fact, there were those who believed that UK might not get Wall because Clifton was not a Calipari fan. Ah, but nationally some are going to see the headline “Wall faces eligibility issues” and immediately pin the blame on the Kentucky coach. They don’t really care about the facts.

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