Ole Miss would not have taken Jeremiah Masoli had it known the NCAA’s interpretation of the quarterback’s transfer waiver request, coach Houston Nutt told CBSSports.com
Nutt said the university was surprised that the NCAA ruled that Masoli’s request violated the “spirit” of the NCAA transfer rule. Masoli was attempting to transfer to Ole Miss after graduating from Oregon. He was kicked out of the program during the offseason after a series of legal problems. Masoli had applied to be a Parks and Recreation graduate student at Ole Miss.
A few years ago the NCAA got rid of the rule that allowed grad students to transfer for a final year of eligibility if their course of study wasn’t offered at their present school. However, it did allow players to request a waiver.
That’s how Masoli got to Ole Miss. On Tuesday, the NCAA ruled that since Masoli was kicked off the team at Oregon, that his transfer request was athletically related more than academic. Ole Miss plans to appeal.
“What they ought to do is change the rule,” Nutt said. “We’ll see if, in the appeal, they see it in a different light.”
Masoli, a walk-on, will redshirt a year and come back for 2011, Nutt said. He also said that he is working on getting Masoli on scholarship in January.
“I think what they’re [NCAA] saying is we can’t promote bad behavior because he got kicked out of school,” a veteran school compliance official told CBSSports.com.
Players are allowed to transfer from Division I-A to Division I-AA without sitting out. That same compliance official told CBSSports.com that some schools are setting unique graduate programs in order to make it easier for players such as Masoli to transfer. There is no evidence that Ole Miss is one of those schools.