Athletes Ineligible Due to University Negligence

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Oct 24, 2022 | 0 Comments

Participating in college athletics takes a lot more than talent. The National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) holds student-athletes to a high standard, with very specific academic and eligibility regulations. Most universities that participate in NCAA-sanctioned competition have entire departments dedicated to keeping their student-athletes in compliance — but that doesn't mean that these matters always go smoothly. Florida A&M University made headlines this fall after mistakes made by academic advisors caused 26 football players to lose their eligibility.

What Happened In Florida

Before the beginning of the college football season in August, over two dozen Florida A&M players were declared ineligible. A number this high is startling. Players explained that they were misled by their academic advisors, who had failed to deliver the athletes accurate eligibility guidance. For example, one player was told by his advisor that he needed two classes to remain eligible when in reality, he needed three.

Before the incident, Florida A&M had only two staff members in charge of NCAA compliance for the entire athletic department (whereas most NCAA-sanctioned schools employ well into the double digits). Players argued that this showed a lack of support from the university to keep its student-athletes eligible. In response, the school has hired seven additional compliance officers and academic advisors to ensure this is an isolated incident. Unfortunately, that doesn't help the 26 players who have already lost half of their season as they attempt to be reinstated.

How the Law Can Help

Student-athletes have enough on their minds with classwork and daily practices. Should they really be obligated to know every single detail of the NCAA's lengthy and ever-changing eligibility requirements? If university staff members — who are employed for the sole purpose of student-athlete compliance — give incorrect guidance to players, shouldn't the school be held responsible when those players are declared ineligible?

The answer is yes.

These students did everything they were told, yet they are still being punished. It's categorically unfair. The problem is that simply reinstating all the players affected is not how the system works. Unless they receive a waiver, the student-athletes must still complete the NCAA's academic requirements before they are deemed eligible. This is where having a lawyer by your side is crucial.

By hiring an experienced attorney the moment you or your child is declared ineligible, you will have an expert to guide you through the complex process of NCAA reinstatement. Not only is your athletic future on the line, but ineligibility can also affect financial aid. With your hard-earned college degree in jeopardy, don't leave these matters to the whims of people you can't trust.

Retain an Experienced Student-Athlete Reinstatement Attorney

Your best opportunity for reinstatement is to retain an experienced attorney the moment that you or your child is declared ineligible.

Attorney Joseph D. Lento has worked nationwide to help countless student-athletes regain eligibility. He and his expert team at the Lento Law Firm can help get you the waiver that you deserve. Contact us at 888-535-3686 or reach out online to discuss your case.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for the futures of his clients nationwide. Attorney Lento and his team represent students and others in disciplinary cases and various other proceedings at colleges and universities across the United States. Attorney Lento has helped countless students, professors, and others in academia at more than a thousand colleges and universities across the United States, and when necessary, he and his team have sought justice on behalf of clients in courts across the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide, and he can help you or your student address any school-related issue or concern anywhere in the United States.


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If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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