After Will Muschamp‘s somewhat surprising decision to allow 2011 signee Mike Blakely out of his Florida scholarship and transfer to another SEC school, it was thought that the touted running back would be forced to sit out his first season at Auburn.
While that will likely be the way the situation ultimately plays itself out, the Tigers are doing their best to have him available for the upcoming season.
Blakely enrolled early at UF but never practiced with the Gators during the spring sessions — a shoulder issue derailed those plans — and, obviously, did not play a down for his original school. He did, however, attend classes, but that’s not stopping AU from seeking a waiver that would allow him to see the field immediately as opposed to sitting out a transfer year.
“We have filed a waiver in an attempt to see if we can have Mike be immediately eligible and we’re in that process right now,” said AU compliance director Rich McGlynn told the Birmingham News. “We’re working with the NCAA and hoping to get a favorable outcome on it. That’s where we are at this time. …
“We need to make an argument based upon the rule. The rule was not put into place based upon an individual in Mike’s situation in order to be eligible here at Auburn. I believe we put together a strong waiver to that. Now it’s just a matter of seeing what the NCAA has to say about it.”
McGlynn, who worked for the NCAA before coming to The Plains, acknowledged that the uniqueness of Blakely’s situation but added “[t]he NCAA takes each case on its merits and looks and reviews those specific facts and makes a decision.”
A decision, McGlynn told the paper, is anticipated in the next couple of weeks. Depending on the outcome of the initial decision, the school could file an appeal.
Rivals.com had Blakely rated as the No. 6 RB in the country this year.