Micheal Eric’s Temple debut will have to wait another year.
The NCAA Clearinghouse ruled the 6-foot-9 freshman ineligible for the season due to NCAA initial eligibility guidelines.
“This is unfortunate as Micheal is an upstanding young man with a strong academic background,” coach Fran Dunphy said in a statement. “His ineligibility determination by the NCAA Clearinghouse was related more to his status as an international student than his academic standing. Even though he will not be able to compete this season, he is still a big part of the Temple basketball program, and we look forward to him contributing next season and beyond.”
Eric is part of Dunphy’s first full recruiting class since becoming Temple’s coach in April 2006. The highly regarded class also includes center Lavoy Allen, forward Craig Williams and guards Ramone Moore and Martavis Kee.
Eric averaged 19 points and 14 rebounds a contest while taking The School at Church Farm to a regular season championship as a senior last season.
Eric and Allen were expected to help solve the Owls’ interior woes. Temple finished 12th in the Atlantic Ten Conference in rebounding margin last season, when opponents averaged 4.5 more boards than the Owls. The Owls lost last season’s top rebounder – forward Dion Dacons – to graduation.
Temple opens its season Nov. 9 at Tennessee.
John Kopp can be reached at email@example.com.