Renardo Sidney Academically Cleared; Hurdle Still Remains

Posted by zhayes9 on August 17th, 2009

One step towards Renardo Sidney joining Mississippi State in their quest for an SEC title was completed today with the McDonald’s All-American receiving academic clearance to enroll at the university and begin classes on the first day, Sidney’s attorney told ESPN.com’s Andy Katz earlier today.

One giant hurdle still remains until Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury can pencil in Sidney for their November 13 opener. The NCAA is still investigating the circumstances surrounding the Sidney family paying for two million dollar homes in the Los Angeles area during Sidney’s transfer to a high school there. The investigation caused both UCLA and USC to back off in their recruitment of Sidney for fear of eligibilty issues. Until the NCAA feels it has compiled strong enough reason to believe Sidney’s family paid for the homes legally, Sidney will not be cleared to play basketball.

Renardo Sidney/ESPN
Renardo Sidney/ESPN

Reports say Sidney and his family are currently on the move to Starkville, MS. If Stansbury does get Sidney eligible at some point this season, he’ll join guards Ravern Johnson, Barry Stewart and shot-blocking sensation Jarvis Varnado in the middle for a Bulldog team that will contend for the Top 25.

My best guess during this entire process remains that Sidney will eventually suit up for Mississippi State at some point during the 2009-10 campaign. The NCAA elongates these investigations tremendously, so pinning for Sidney to play for Stansbury and the Bulldogs during their season opener could be wishful thinking. To avoid an endless lawsuit from Jackson and the Sidney family, however, expect the NCAA to slap Sidney on the wrist with around a 9-10 game suspension and move on while he plays in the bulk of Mississippi State’s schedule.

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