"I did not know one dream would cost me another." - Orlando Sanchez
The story of the ineligibility of Orlando Sanchez is now clearer than ever.
According to the New York Times, via Sanchez' lawyer Robert Orr, the 24 year-old forward has not been ruled eligible for St. John's this season because he played in the final three minutes and thirty-eight seconds of a game with the Dominican Republic national team.
By entering the game, the NCAA ruled that Sanchez forfeited his final year of eligibility. The NCAA mandates that every year a player who has already surpassed a 21st birthday and has yet to enroll in college takes part in organized competition, they lose a year of collegiate eligibility. The amount of time played in a game setting is not considered.
Sanchez was unaware of the rule, and wrote a letter to the NCAA last fall attempting to make that clear. The NCAA waited to make a ruling because they were waiting for St. John's to disclose more information.
Sanchez and St. John's are still optimistic about the 6-foot-9 forward's chances of possibly being ruled eligible to play for St. John's next season.
Sanchez' lawyer, Robert Orr, also represents UCLA star freshman Shabazz Muhammad, who missed the first three games of the season due to eligibility issues. Muhammad was ruled eligible to join the UCLA team on November 16th.
The Rumble will have reactions from Sanchez, St. John's head coach Steve Lavin, and University Athletics Director Chris Monasch on Saturday.