We’re almost through the first week of the season and there is still no sign of the NCAA granting WKU Basketball PG Kenny Cooper a wavier to be eligible this season.
Cooper, a Lipscomb transfer, averaged 9.8 PPG, 4.5 APG, & 2.0 steals per game for a Lipscomb roster that made the NCAA tournament and NIT final four in the previous two seasons. With Lipscomb’s head coach taking the job at Belmont, Western Kentucky felt good about Coopers wavier being approved by the NCAA. Rick Stansbury even had this to say earlier in May to the Bowling Green Daily News-
We feel good about (Cooper) applying for his waiver and we feel good about the waiver,” Stansbury said. “These kids nowadays, these waivers, they pass them out like Halloween candy a little bit. There are some other mitigating factors in his situation too. So we feel really good about him.”
Rick Stansbury (via: BGDN)
Well we’re a week past Halloween and we still have no word on Cooper’s eligibility.
Hilltopper fans have seen this before, most recently in the 2017 season when former Hilltopper Moustaphia Diagne and current Hilltopper Josh Anderson went until December until the NCAA ruled both eligible. Ridiculous.
Moving forward without Cooper for now Western Kentucky will turn to junior Taveion Hollingsworth to run the point. While Hollingsworth is not a natural point guard he can get the job done through the next 4 games until WKU faces off with Louisville in Nashville on November 29th. To increase their chances against the cardinals Western Kentucky will likely need their senior point guard to be eligible.
The longer this decision lingers, the more of a joke the NCAA becomes. Your move NCAA.
This weekend WKU basketball is set to host potential transfer Kenny Cooper who played last year for Lipscomb (Nashville, TN). Corey Evans of Rivals.com reports.
Last season Cooper averaged 9.8 ppg, 4.5 apg, & 3.5 rpg. The 6ft Junior transfer will be eligible to play immediately.
With the addition of Cooper this would fill the hole left by Lamonte Bearden (Graduated) and Dalano Banton (Transfer). With other schools involved in the recruitment of Cooper such as, Butler, Virginia Tech, Missouri State, Southern Illinois, and Loyola Chicago.
A staple of the Rick Stansbury era at WKU has been transfers and I believe WKU has a good shot at putting themselves in the drivers seat for landing Cooper next season.
Here is a video of Coopers game winner vs NC State in the NIT quarter finals last month.