FLASH STAFF REPORT
(June 21, 2016) — The National Junior College Athletic Association is accusing Ranger College of using an ineligible player during its run to fourth place in the NJCAA Division I Basketball Championship, but the school is appealing the ruling.
The Dallas Morning News first reported the NJCAA allegation on its website Tuesday, saying Ranger, unless it wins its appeal, will likely have to forfeit every game in which the ineligible player competed. The Morning News cites two sources as saying the player in question is Joshua Simmons of Irmo, S.C., who, according the university’s website, played in every game of the 2015-16 season.
Simmons helped the Rangers to the best finish in the school’s 90-year history, the Morning News article states.
NJCAA Assistant Executive Director Mark Krug told The Morning News, “The NJCAA previously ruled that Ranger College used an ineligible player during the 2016-16 season…Ranger has since appealed that ruling to the NJCAA Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will make a decision…and notify Ranger.”
Ranger College President Bill Campion told the Morning News, “We are working through the issue right now and feel very strongly about Ranger’s position — and the ultimate outcome.”
The Morning News reports that even if Ranger loses it’s NJCAA appeal, the school could try a final appeal with the American Arbitration Association.
Ranger went 2-23 in 2014-15, then hired Billy Clyde Gillispie, a former head coach at Kentucy, Texas A&M and Texas Tech. Gillispie is also athletic director at Ranger.
Ranger already had to forfeit its first four games last season due to “incomplete paperwork filed by another school on behalf of a transferring player,” according to The Morning News report.