DURHAM—When Jeremy Cash transferred from Ohio State to Duke in January, he hoped to play right away.
And even though the NCAA denied the safety’s transfer waiver request Thursday, head coach David Cutcliffe hasn’t given up hope. Cutcliffe said the school will appeal the NCAA’s decision on the basis that Cash was mislead about the coaching situation at Ohio State.
“What he was faced with was some of the most extraordinary circumstances that I’ve seen, and those usually are when we see waivers granted,” Cutcliffe said. “We’re not asking anything out of the ordinary.”
Cash, a sophomore from Plantation, Fla., chose the Buckeyes over Florida State and Arizona State in the spring of 2010. At the time, Jim Tressel was the coach at Ohio State. After Urban Meyer was hired to be Tressel’s permanent replacement in Nov. (Tressel resigned in May 2011 amid allegations his players received improper benefits from a local tattoo parlor), Cash asked for his release in January. Rated the No. 25 safety in the country by Rivals out of high school, Cash played in five games as a freshman and registered three tackles.
“Well, you just come in and end up feeling assured in the recruiting process, without getting into all the details, you ask all the right questions, and he was recruited and played under Jim Tressel,” Cutcliffe said. “I can’t speak for Jim Tressel but I’m certain he probably was excited about coaching Jeremy. He was going to be there and then that changes, and you get into a circumstance when you’re with another new staff, a staff or a coach that has already recruited you once, and you didn’t go there. Therein lies enough."
Steve Davis, who coached Cash in high school, said Cash had not been offered a scholarship by the Gators, the team Meyer coached while Cash was at Plantation. He did note that Paul Haynes, his position coach and primary recruiter under Tressel, left for Arkansas when Meyer took over the reins.
The NCAA approved 91 transfer waivers and denied 71 from April 2011- April 2012. Christopher Radford, a spokesman for the NCAA, said that the 91 approvals included waivers that had been initially denied but then successfully appealed and that the organization does not track the number of appeals.
Only student-athletes who play sports that are historically academically underperforming, which includes basketball, football, baseball and men’s ice hockey, are required to sit out a year in normal circumstances. Participants in other sports are eligible for a one-time transfer exception, which allows them to play right away. The NCAA also states that the transfer rules are not waived if a coach leaves a program.