The verdict is in: Dezmine Wells will play for the Maryland men's basketball team this season.
As first reported by InsideMDSports, the NCAA today granted Wells, a transfer from Xavier, a waiver that will allow him to play for the Terps this season.
An explosive 6-foot-4 wing guard who earned Atlantic 10 All-Rookie team honors last year as a freshman at Xavier, Wells was cleared after an exhaustive effort by Maryland's athletic department, which appealed for the waiver on the basis that Wells was unfairly dismissed by the Muskateers.
“We’re very happy for Dez as the NCAA legislative relief process provided him with complete and fair due process,” Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson said in a press release. “Our staff was personally invested in the NCAA waiver and appeal process because it was in the best interest of our student-athlete. We’re pleased that Dez will be able to move forward and experience all the opportunities that come with being a student-athlete at the University of Maryland.”
Wells, who averaged 9.8 points and 4.9 rebounds for a Xavier team that reached the Sweet 16, will factor heavily into the Terps rotation immediately. A former top-50 recruit from North Carolina, he adds athleticism, size and defense to a young Terps roster some felt was one piece short of being an NCAA Tournament-caliber team.
“We’re excited for Dez because at the end of the day, the NCAA made the right decision,” coach Mark Turgeon said in the release. “Our staff did an incredible job in putting this NCAA waiver appeal together on Dez’s behalf. Dez has been a welcomed addition, a great teammate, and has made a seamless transition in getting acclimated to our campus. This has been a long process for him and his family, and we’re grateful he can put it behind him and focus on being a student-athlete at the University of Maryland.”
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