Indiana DB Bryant Fitzgerald ruled non-qualifier by NCAA, won’t play in 2017 after athletic department error

Indiana freshman DB Bryant Fitzgerald isn’t eligible to practice or play in 2017 after the NCAA ruled him a non-qualifier.

The Hoosiers released a statement on Saturday saying a waiver request and an appeal of the denial were both denied by the NCAA. In the statement, Indiana athletic director Fred Glass said Fitzgerald’s ineligibility is the fault of the athletic department and not the player.

Fitzgerald’s ineligibility cause caused by a mistake in the Office of Compliance Services at Indiana’s athletic department. The specifics aren’t delved into, but the statement says the athletic department “inaccurately advised” Fitzgerald regarding his eligibility requirement.

Zach Osterman of the Indianapolis Star shared the statement.

Indiana DB Bryant Fitzgerald not eligible for 2017 season

Glass also said he was disappointed the NCAA didn’t grant the waiver request because of the unique situation. Fitzgerald will maintain his full scholarship.

“Bryant Fitzgerald is a smart, outstanding young man who is academically prepared and capable of being very successful at IU,” Glass said in a statement. “His ineligibility is not his fault. It is ours. On behalf of myself and everyone associated with IU Athletics, I personally apologize to Bryant and his family for our mistake. While it was an isolated and unintended one, it is no less devastating to Bryant, and I could not feel worse about it. The process leading to the mistake has been fixed and redundancies added, and we are very confident nothing like this will ever happen again. I am very disappointed in the NCAA for not granting our waiver request nor our appeal. Bryant should not have to bear the brunt of our mistake, and the NCAA could have, and should have, remedied that in the interest of this student’s well-being, who is in this situation though absolutely no fault of his own.”

Fitzgerald, from Avon, Ind., was a 3-star recruit for 2017. The 6-foot, 205-pound freshman was a top-10 recruit from Indiana, according to 247 Sports composite.

Fitzgerald had 107 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, 3 interceptions and one sack his senior season at Avon High School.

The post Indiana DB Bryant Fitzgerald ruled non-qualifier by NCAA, won’t play in 2017 after athletic department error appeared first on Land of 10.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.