MIAMI (CBS4) – Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High’s boys’ basketball team, ranked number one in the state, may have this year’s season wiped out due to team member who may have been ineligible to play.
The issue centers around senior guard Brian Delancy, a native of the Bahamas. The Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) said in their paperwork on the teen, they are missing an I-20 form; a student visa which gives international students permission to attend school.
“My teammates it hurt them so they can’t play because of me,” Brian Delancy told CBS4’s Tiffani Helberg. “I do have the proper documents it will be proven in court tomorrow that I do.”
Delancy has filed a lawsuit against the FHSAA claiming he should be allowed to compete in the playoffs. A court hearing on the matter will be held on Tuesday.
Krop officials say they trying to cooperate but so far have been unable to satisfy the FHSAA demand.
Federal law prohibits public schools from investigating a student’s immigration status.
“School officials are not permitted to ask that question when a student enrolls,” said David Baron, Delancy’s lawyer.
While the door to an education is open to everyone, FHSAA officials say the door to the gym is not. Their rules say playing on the team is a privilege, not a right and a player has to prove legal status.
“If you go up and down the rosters of teams in Dade County and you were looking for that, you would find a number of students that would be the same classification, but they’re playing on teams and why is this student being singled out,” said Baron.
It’s an issue that has hit the team hard.
“I just think like people are trying to find a reason to get us out of it everybody knows that we are like one of the best teams in the state so I mean I just feel like it was wrong,” said Cody Mann, a point guard on the team.
“I think it’s really unfair and it’s really sad that they’re trying to do this to us cause we worked really hard all year for this,” Darren Nagar, a guard on the team.
Last Friday Krop was removed from the Greater Miami Athletic Conference tournament which begins Monday.
“Because the FHSAA has deemed one of their players ineligible, forfeiture of contests is mandatory according to their own bylaws,” GMAC executive secretary Cheryl Golden told the paper.
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