Baker Mayfield continues to be screwed by a program that never even gave him a scholarship.
The school that needed that unrecruited walk-on to bail them out would not let go. In fact, Texas Tech has more control over an All-America caliber quarterback — more than 24 months in the team’s rear-view mirror — than anyone except perhaps Mayfield’s parents.
The NCAA, the conference, and the school — specifically coach Kliff Kingsbury — would not sign off on Mayfield getting a fourth year of eligibility in 2017. The Red Raiders did not provide him with the opportunity to use a one-time transfer exception. Oh sure, they can hide behind Big 12 and NCAA rules, but the fact remains.
By not signing off on waiving Mayfield’s redshirt year after he transferred to Oklahoma in 2014, none of them agreed to do the right thing.
Because Texas Tech refused to grant the exception, Mayfield’s career at Oklahoma will come to an end after next season. That’s fair, right?
Evidently the conference thinks so.
The Big 12 faculty athletic representatives who denied an appeal in May won’t so much as reveal the vote totals against Mayfield’s request. All we know is that it was a majority, at least 6-4 against.
Those FARs are supposed to be a moral conscious of fair treatment of the student-athlete. In this case, they’re hiding behind their votes.
As with most cases like this, the right thing to do gets lost in the crossfire. No doubt, Big 12 and NCAA officials are worried an exemption for Mayfield will open some sort of loophole — except that none of us can remember many unrecruited walk-ons becoming All-Americans.
Yeah, can’t set any precedents that might favor student-athletes. That way lies madness.