Dewan Hernandez’s career with the University of Miami basketball program has come to a disappointing end. Earlier this week, the NCAA ruled Hernandez will be ineligible for the remainder of the season and 40 percent of next season, for accepting benefits from an agent. Per NCAA rules, this violation warrants permanent ineligibility unless an appeal is granted by the NCAA student-athlete reinstatement committee. However, the Hurricanes starting forward has decided to avoid further controversy and leave Coral Cables to prepare for the 2019 NBA Draft.
The agent responsible for the scandal, Christian Dawkins, is strongly connected to the FBI’s college basketball corruption probe in 2017. The investigation revealed his participation in several acts of bribery schemes involving coaches and the recruitment of young players. Dawkins and three others were accused of arranging $250,000 payments to incentivize high school players to sign with Adidas-sponsored schools, per ESPN’s Jeff Goodman and Mark Schlabach. He now faces two to four years in prison after being convicted of fraud this past October.
University of Miami Athletic Director Blake James expressed his frustration with the NCAA’s ruling on Twitter stating, “Based on the totality of the facts the University is not in agreement with the decisions and interpretations of this case and made it well-known to the NCAA staff that we have many reservations about the reliability of evidence and ultimate conclusions.” Hurricanes head coach Jim Larranaga also voiced his support of Hernandez, referring to his former player as “a hard worker, a dedicated athlete, and a good student who worked hard in the classroom.” Moving forward, Hernandez hopes to put this scandal behind him with a successful career at the next level.