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CJ Henry’s fate may still be in Calipari’s hands

In today’s edition of the Lawrence Journal-World, they have a little Q&A section about the Henry commitments and some of the basic FAQ’s asked about the new stars of Lawrence that includes one little UK-related nugget.  The eligibility of CJ Henry could hinge on whether or not John Calipari recruited him to Memphis or if it was the other way around.  If Calipari actively recruited him, which CJ says is not the case, then he could be forced to sit out this season as a transfer.  Here is what they wrote:

Q: Will C.J. be eligible to play next season at KU? Normally players have to sit out a year after transferring.

A: C.J.’s mom, Barbara, says her oldest son will indeed be immediately eligible.

“According to the NCAA rules, with C.J. being a non-recruited athlete, his scholarship was being financed through the Yankees which makes him qualified for a one-time transfer rule. He’ll be able to play,” Barbara said.

C.J. Henry, who sat out last season because of a broken bone in his foot, says he was a “non-recruited athlete” because Memphis didn’t actively pursue him.

He cell-phoned coach John Calipari, who is one of his dad’s friends, and said he was giving up on baseball and wanted to play hoops for him in Memphis.

The J-W has been told if Calipari backs him up on this, he should be eligible to play during the 2009-10 season. If, however, former Memphis coach Calipari says he recruited Henry, C.J. would likely have to sit out a year in accordance with NCAA transfer rules.

It’s believed Henry will not be able to appeal. It’s a cut-and-dried case of whether he was recruited … or not.

It doesn’t mean a whole lot to UK fans, but it is a bit of an interesting twist.  My guess would be that Calipari will back up CJ Henry’s story, allowing him to be eligible to play this year, but if it turns out the other way, it would be an interesting little subplot to a story that we thought Kentucky had already been written out of.

Article written by Thomas Beisner