It’s a shame when a team loses privleges because of a player’s actions. However, it is also up to high school athletic departments to make sure that their students are eligible for play.
The Ridgeway High School basketball team in has been kicked out of the Tennessee state tournament because one of their players was a 22-year-old, married man. McKenzie Sewell faked his transcript so that he could play high school basketball for Ridgeway.
The story gets even better when you find out that his 35-year-old wife posed as his “mother” guardian in order for him to enroll at Ridgeway. After some investigation, the school discovered that Sewell had already received his GED and he was a former gang member.
I understand why the school is banned from the state tournament but I do feel bad for the players since they had no idea and no involvement in the case. If the school’s administration would have done their job then Sewell would have never been on the basketball team. Administration is now under investigation and some faculty at the school may be fired.
Ridgeway was the 3rd-ranked team in the state and they were expected to be a good competitor at the state tournament. Many of the players were expecting to be scouted during the state tournament and now they won’t get that chance.
The school isn’t quite “on-the-ball” when it comes to controlling their students. Last week, 10 players were suspended for a fight during a game. On top of that, their assistant basketball coach Jimmy McClain was found dead in his home a couple of weeks ago. McClain previously played for Central Arkansas, along with Scottie Pippen. His death has been determined to be a homicide but there are very few details as to what happened.
I don’t know what is going on around Memphis, TN but it looks like they may need to pickup the pace when it comes to following the rules.