Former Red Raider Gets Immediate Eligibility at Buffalo
Joshua Mballa was a freshman on last year's Texas Tech team and after the season decided to transfer after an influx of talent left him at the end of the bench instead of moving up. Mballa left the Red Raiders for greener pastures and playing time and ended up at the University of Buffalo, the same team Texas Tech played and beat in the NCAA tournament.
Now, NCAA rules state that transfers must sit out a season after transferring universities unless you fit their arbitrary regulations that seem fluid and ever-changing. Mballa's case for immediate eligibility seemed pretty week, but we found out this week that the NCAA disagreed with my thoughts and granted Mballa immediate access to the floor.
To that I say, good for him. If he wants to go play, let him play. I just think the NCAA should grant every waiver or none of the waivers for immediate eligibility after transferring.
As it stands now players across the country are stuck in limbo as they wait for confirmation as to why or why not their waiver will be denied. Former UNLV player and current Red Raider Joel Ntambwe is one of those players that is sitting on his hands now waiting on a transfer request to be ruled on.
He's not the only one either, with less than two weeks until the season starts the NCAA still has yet to rule on 74 transfer requests as of October 22nd. 74!
Included in the denials is Michael Potter who transferred from Ohio State to Wisconsin during a coaching change. Potter stuck it out under the new coach until December of 2018, when he made the move to Wisconsin. He sat out last spring and applied for a waiver for the fall semester, but was denied.
The dumb part is, he can play as soon as the Badgers semester ends on December 21st. Why does the NCAA, who will let him compete in December, feel like he needs to miss November? To get acclimated to the new school as a student? He's already done that. Because Ohio State blocked his transfer? Maybe, but that wasn't listed as the reason.
The bottom line is that the entire process of transferring and applying for waivers is not a good system. It's a terrible system, but there's no way to fix it in the current NCAA landscape because the organization has to have their hands in everything. The discipline that will take 5 years to dispense. The farce that is the Adidas scandal when Nike and Under Armour are probably in the same boat. I don't know how I'd fix the NCAA but my first step would be putting objective criteria surrounding transfers.
If they check the boxes they can play, if not they sit a year. It seems simple to me.