Cincinnati head basketball coach Wes Miller delivered some bad news for the Bearcats’ basketball program on Wednesday at Big 12 Media Days as he confirmed that both second-time transfer big men Aziz Bandaogo and Jamille Reynolds have had their waivers for immediate eligibility denied by the NCAA.
This is big news for UC, as both Bandaogo and Reynolds were expected to play major roles for the Bearcats in 2023-24.
However, this isn’t the end of the story as Miller says that Cincinnati is appealing the decision in homes of gaining their eligibilty back for their first season in the Big 12.
“Aziz (Bandaogo) and Jamille (Reynolds), two second-time transfers who have waivers with the NCAA, they were denied on the first round last week,” Miller said. “They were denied at the staff level. I’ve learned more about this process than I thought I ever would or care to. Now we submit an appeal and it goes to an appeal committee at the NCAA.
“Listen, we’re very discouraged by the news last week. The issue at hand isn’t whether we should have restrictions for second-time transfers. That’s not the issue with this situation. The issue at hand is we have two players, and there are others out there in America, who were given guidance when making life decisions last spring to transfer. They were given guidance and guidelines by the NCAA as a path to play.
“They felt that they met those guidelines, they made life decisions based on that. At the University of Cincinnati we feel as strongly as you can possibly express that they meet the guidelines and standards that were laid out directly by the NCAA. I expect them be cleared to play because they meet those guidelines. Out of respect for these two young men I won’t talk about their personal business, but I know the situation with both of them deeply, I know their waivers deeply, and I understand the guidelines laid out. They meet those – it’s undeniable. So I have hope that through the appeals process they will be cleared. I expect them to be cleared. But I’m concerned about how it will affect them. Certainly it will affect our team, but how will that affect young people who were led to believe something based on guidelines by a massive institution if they’re not cleared. How will that affect their mental health? That concerns me on a much deeper level. So we’ll keep you up to date, but I’m hopeful that they will be cleared through the next round of appeals.”
This story will be updated as more details emerge and Cincinnati hopes to gain two key pieces of their roster back before the Bearcats open up their 2023 season against UIC on November 6th.