Two Men's Basketball Players Ruled Ineligible for Season Opener

Nov. 13, 2001

CORVALLIS, ORE. - - Oregon State University men's basketball student-athletes Philip Ricci and Jimmie Haywood have been declared ineligible for the team's season opening game Nov. 17 against the University of Northern Colorado, OSU Director of Athletics Mitch Barnhart announced Tuesday.

Ricci and Haywood competed in the non-NCAA sanctioned Emerald City All-Star Tournament in Seattle last May. Rules prohibit Division I student-athletes from participating in outside competition unless the NCAA sanctions the event.

'Essentially, this is considered a minor infraction in the eyes of the NCAA,' OSU Associate Athletic Director for Compliance Dan Trump said. 'Both student-athletes are required to be withheld from the first regularly scheduled contest based on case precedent. No further penalties from the NCAA were associated with this violation.'

The 6'7' Ricci is a starter at forward after missing all of last season recovering from preseason knee surgery. He averaged 17.5 points and 10.5 rebounds in the team's two exhibition games.

Haywood is a junior who has 25 starts in his two-year Beaver career. The 6'2' off guard came off the bench in the recent exhibition contests and averaged 5.0 points and 3.5 rebounds.

'This was a genuine mistake playing in this summer league tournament,' OSU head coach Ritchie McKay said. 'I'm excited Philip and Jimmie have the passion to compete at any time, but in this case we have to accept that a rule has been broken. I know there was no intent to circumvent NCAA rules, and I look forward to having them back for game action next week.'

Ricci and Haywood will be eligible for Oregon State's game on Thanksgiving night against No. 23 Texas in the first round of the Great Alaska Shootout.

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