NCAA denies waiver for 27-year-old Williams to play another season for Memphis

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The NCAA once again has denied a waiver for DeAndre Williams to play this season at Memphis, keeping the oldest player in Division I last season off coach Penny Hardaway's roster.

Memphis confirmed the denial Friday.

“We are extremely disappointed a waiver for an additional year of eligibility for DeAndre Williams was denied, which came following a request for reconsideration of the initial denial and then an appeal,” Memphis said in a statement.

Williams, who turned 27 last month, was seeking a sixth year after sitting out his freshman season in 2018-19 at Evansville as a year-in-residence. He averaged 17.7 points and 8.2 rebounds last season for the Tigers, who lost their NCAA Tournament opener in March to Florida Atlantic.

Memphis noted evidence of Williams receiving “academic misadvisement” before he originally enrolled in college had been provided to the NCAA and should have been enough to allow the waiver. The statement also noted other information that had been shared with the NCAA in an “ongoing basis.”

“Unfortunately, after multiple months of back-and-forth, the NCAA arrived at a different conclusion,” Memphis said in the statement.

Williams was a first-team All-American Athletic Conference player last season for Memphis. He was the only player to start all 35 games for the Tigers, averaging 31 minutes. He also led the conference shooting 53.2% and had 12 double-doubles.

Williams transferred to Memphis and became eligible in 2020-21 starting Dec. 16 at Tulane, helping the Tigers finish the season 16-5. He averaged 15.2 points and 6.9 rebounds in 2019-20, the lone season he played at Evansville.

He graduated Klein Forest High School in Houston in 2016 and played for Nation Wide Academy in Oklahoma City in 2017-18.

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