Is Villanova Freshman Mouphtaou Yarou 25 or 19?

Posted: November 10, 2009 in Big East, Miscellaneous
Tags: ,

villanova_logoOn Monday Sporting News ran a story about the age of Villanova freshman Mouphtaou Yarou.  The 6’9″ Freshman from3528627 the West African Republic of Benin has been in the Unites States just a year and a half and is set to fill the hole left by Villanova center Dante Cunningham.  Multiple sources have confirmed that Yarou had played in the 2007 Africa Cup for Men’s Clubs tournament  At the time he was listed at 23, with a birth date of June 26, 1984.  That would make him 25 now, and possibly ineligible.  Gordan Finsh, Villanova’s Associate Athletics Director for Compliance told Sporting News:

“I don’t have a compelling need to look into it because I believe it’s probably a typo.”

He explained that there had been another typo, so that this probably was one as well.

ESPN.com reported today that Yarou was cleared by the eligibility center and would be able to play in the team’s first game this Friday.

imagesMaybe this was something, maybe it was nothing.  There have been a number of players who have come over from Africa and have had age situations.  In the ESPN report Coach Jay Wright said that Villanova is working with the NCAA to clarify the issue.

If it turns out the Yarou is not 19 and therefore ineligible, Villanova would suffer a huge blown.  Their hopes of a BIG EAST title would almost certainly be dismissed.  It is no secret that foreign players have fudged their ages in the past to appear as more attractive prospects, so it is possible that this might be the case with Yarou, than again it may not.  In either case disregarding the accusations and refusing to look at the opposing evidence because you believe there is a typo is poor form by Villanova Associate Athletics Director, Gordan Finsh.  It’s not out of the realm of possibility that he has an ineligible player on his team.  For the sake of Yarou let’s hope that he is cleared and able to play, and not jump to conclusions until the NCAA has made clarified the issue.  He seems like he could be an exciting player.

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