Los Angeles, CA, United States (4E Sports) – UCLA freshman Shabazz Muhammad will play in the Legends Classic against Georgetown on Monday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The 6-foot-6 guard, listed by many as the nation’s top high school recruit last year, was reinstated by the NCAA last Friday.
His family has to repay approximately $1,600 in impermissible benefits he accepted, and the three games he missed will serve as his suspension.
The decision veers away from NCAA rules that imposes a 30 percent loss of eligibility, equivalent to nine games, for receiving benefits greater than $1,000.
NCAA spokesperson Stacey Osbourn refused to explain the discrepancy.
The NCAA discovered that Muhammad received travel expenses and lodging during his recruitment. Muhammad’s attorney, Robert Orr, said those visits were to Duke and North Carolina and were paid for by Benjamin Lincoln, a financial adviser from North Carolina.
“He just wants to play basketball and go to school and thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours have been invested in determining if he can play,” Orr said.
If victorious, the No. 13 UCLA Bruins will play either No. 1 Indiana or Georgia the following day.