The NCAA has approved the University of Maryland's appeal to allow guard/transfer Dez Wells to become immediately eligibile to join the Terrapins' basketball team, the school announced Wednesday.
"We're very happy for Dez as the NCAA legislative relief process provided him with complete and fair due process," Maryland director of athletics Kevin Anderson said in a statement. "Our staff was personally invested in the NCAA waiver and appeal process because it was in the best interest of our student-athlete. We're pleased that Dez will be able to move forward and experience all the opportunities that come with being a student-athlete at the University of Maryland."
Wells transferred to Maryland in September after being expelled from Xavier last summer for what the school called at the time "a serious violation of the Code of Student Conduct." It was later revealed that Wells was at the center of a sexual assault case, but no charges were ultimately filed.
The NCAA inititally denied Wells' eligibility waiver request last month, but after winning his appeal, Wells will be available to suit up for the Terps immediately and will not have to sit out for a season.
"We're excited for Dez because at the end of the day, the NCAA made the right decision," head coach Mark Turgeon said. "Our staff did an incredible job in putting this NCAA waiver appeal together on Dez's behalf. Dez has been a welcomed addition, a great teammate, and has made a seamless transition in getting acclimated to our campus. This has been a long process for him and his family, and we're grateful he can put it behind him and focus on being a student-athlete at the University of Maryland."
The addition of Wells, who averaged nearly 10 points and five rebounds per game en route to earning Atlantic 10 rookie of the year honors during his lone season as a Musketeer, will surely give the Terps a boost. He should be in the starting lineup for Maryland in its season opener Friday against defending national champion Kentucky at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
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