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Reasonable James Wiseman Seems Possible Now, Would Be Good for College Basketball

PORTLAND, OREGON - NOVEMBER 12: James Wiseman #32 of the Memphis Tigers walks up court during the first half of the game against the Oregon Ducks between the Oregon Ducks and Memphis Grizzlies at Moda Center on November 12, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
PK Invitational - Memphis v Oregon | Steve Dykes/Getty Images

Memphis standout freshman James Wiseman has withdrawn his lawsuit against the NCAA and is reportedly in the process of fixing his eligibility problems, according to multiple reports. The 7-foot-1 bluechipper is ineligible while that gets sorted out. The Tigers next play against Alcorn State.

Wiseman is ensnared in an issue involving his mother accepting impermissible benefits from Penny Hardaway in 2017. Hardaway is a first-year coach in Memphis and at the time the funds ($11,500) were used as a loan to help the family move from Nashville.

Memphis took the unusual step of playing Wiseman anyway when the conflict came up and the player was granted a temporary restraining order that allowed him to play in the last two games.

From the outside looking in, it seems as though there was some sort of backroom deal reached in which Wiseman will agree to a negotiated suspension, the length of which is unclear at this time. We'll have to see how severe the punishment is before making final judgements, but if it's on the lighter side, this could be a resolution that satisfies both parties.

More broadly, it could be help college basketball as a whole. And I know, arguing over the ethical, moral, and real-world impacts of strident NCAA bylaws does not feel like a win. But it feels, at this point, that this topic won't dog Wiseman and Memphis deep into the season and fans will get to see him on the court.

Perhaps that's too cup-half-full, but considering how things could have played out, there's reason to believe it's an overall positive outcome.