OSG High: #1 Overall MLB Prospect Ruled Ineligible

By Phil Cantor
Apr. 15, 2016

He Was The Top Name On MLB Sheets, But Not Anymore....

((HT: NJ.com/Zedalis-Stanmyre))

Admittedly, the HQ knows all about transfer rules with high school athletes and state associations. They're all over the place and the states have their own sets of regulations and responses from case to case...

The HQ also knows that rules are skated... we're not that naive... and that's from sport to sport.

The newest high profile case is in New Jersey and just so happens to involve the top-ranked baseball prospect in the country.

Jason Groome spent his junior season at the IMG Academy in Florida and was named the #1 overall prospect in the upcoming draft. But his transferring back home to pitch for Barnegat (NJ) High for his senior season has, apparently, violated New jersey state transfer rules. The NJSIAA is now telling Barnegat to forfeit games Groome has been involved in and that they have to wipe his stats off the books as well. Groome now has to sit for 30 days to comply with the transfer rule and might be back for the tail end of the Barnegat schedule.

Those stats include a no-hitter earlier this week. Here's highlights, thanks to our friends at Baseball America

According to the NJSIAA rules, the move did not constitute a "bona fide" change of address. 

Here's the statement released to NJ Advance Media from the NJSIAA

“The association’s rules clearly state that a student-athlete transferring from one secondary school to another must provide evidence of a bona fide change of residence as defined by NJSIAA rules,” NJSIAA spokesman Michael Cherenson said in a statement released to NJ Advance Media. “Otherwise, that student will be deemed ineligible to participate in interscholastic athletic competition for 30 calendar days or half of the maximum number of games allowed in that sport by NJSIAA rules. Further, if it is determined that an ineligible player participated in regular season games, those games must be forfeited. Neither ruling is open to appeal.”

Sufficed to say, anyone and everyone tied to Groome and Barnegat isn't happy.

NJ Advance Media's Steve Politi wants the NJSIAA to address the iniquity of the transfer rule- and he has valid points. 

Which usually means that the act of common sense just won't happen...