It didn’t take long for James Wiseman to generate headlines this season. Unfortunately it is for his actions off-the-court. And really not even his. It’s his head coach, Penny Hardaway, that’s gotten him in trouble.
Long story short (click here if you want to read more), Wiseman is in trouble because Hardaway (before he became coach of Memphis) gave the Wiseman family money to help cover some of the moving expenses. James was moving closer to Memphis, Hardaway wanted to help get him there.
However, the 7-foot big man’s camp is not backing down.
“Their finding is arbitrary and capricious based on the law and the way the bylaws are written,” Randy Fishman, one of Wiseman’s attorneys, told The Athletic. “Nobody would’ve dreamed Penny would be the coach in 2019. He helped somebody out when he wasn’t the coach, not knowing he’d be the coach.”
You could make the argument that maybe Penny knew there was a CHANCE of becoming coach in the near future. And maybe you could argue that getting Wiseman to commit to Memphis could help that chance. But all of that, I would assume, cannot be proven in court.
Ultimately, the unfortunate part of this a potential lost season for a top prospect. A lot of people had James rated highly on their respective draft boards. Jeff Goodman had him as a potential number one pick in one of his earliest mock drafts. The new flavor of the month is North Carolina’s Cole Anthony, but Wiseman could end up back in that conversation really quickly. You hear it all the time but you can’t teach that kind of height.
Jeff Goodman and ESPN and Big10 Network’s Robbie Hummel on this week’s Good ‘N Plenty for a breakdown of Memphis’ star center. Make sure you subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher! And make sure you follow Jeff on Twitter here!
5:24 The future for 3-on-3 basketball
14:03 James Wiseman situation
25:23 First impressions of Wiseman
33:17 Cassius Winston is awesome