James Wiseman leaves U of M in prep for NBA

Updated: Dec. 19, 2019 at 2:12 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - James Wiseman has announced he will be leaving the University of Memphis basketball team in preparation for the NBA.

Wiseman took to Instagram Thursday to break the news that he has formally withdrawn from the university. This comes just after a battle with the NCAA on Wiseman’s eligibility.

In November, NCAA officials ruled that Wiseman must sit out 12 games and $11,500 to a charity of his choice.

According to Wiseman’s attorney Leslie Ballin, the ruling stemmed from Tigers head coach Penny Hardaway’s role in helping Wiseman’s family move to Memphis from Nashville when Wiseman was in high school and before Hardaway became the head coach at Memphis.

The NCAA considered Hardaway a booster because of a $1 million donation he made to the university in 2008, years before he was named head coach.

The university worked to appeal the decision, but Wiseman and Ballin later withdrew the lawsuit.

U of M athletics released a statement saying:

Although disappointing, the UofM supports James and his family in his decision to leave to prepare for the 2020 NBA Draft, and will continue to follow James in what will certainly prove to be a successful career.

Head basketball coach Penny Hardaway also sent Wiseman well wishes.

We wish nothing but the best for James in his future endeavors as he follows his dreams. He will truly be missed.

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