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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

November 10, 2006 at 2:41 PM

More on “suddenly seniors”

There’s been a lot of discussion here concerning yesterday’s news about the five players who were suddenly found to be seniors.
There figures to be a little more news about this, as well, as Michael Braunstein’s father, Paul, has e-mailed a few of us in the media to let us know that he is meeting with UW officials this afternoon to ask that Michael not be introduced as a senior tomorrow because he wants to come back next season.
Paul Braunstein also said that Chris Hemphill’s mother will be in town today to also say that Chris would like to return next season.
But what I’ve heard today is that UW adminstrators are in full support of Tyrone Willingham on this one and that they view the meetings strictly as an opportunity to answer questions from the parents involved.
As has been speculated, I think there may be more behind-the-scenes stuff on these decisions than just what you see on Saturday.
Washington coaches clearly haven’t been happy with some of the things Braunstein has said in the past to reporters. Braunstein told me recently he didn’t intend his comment about Keith Gilbertson — that he would last longer than the coach would at UW — to be taken as literally as it looked in print in a story we published last week. He said it was simply a heat of the moment thing. But I don’t think UW coaches liked it very much.
Word also is that Hemphill was quietly suspended for a few games this season without any of us really noticing since he hadn’t been playing much. He has officially played in only five games this season. Not sure the reason for the suspension, but sounds as if he has run afoul of the coaches on occasion.
Paul Braunstein said that Michael Braunstein may look into playing at other schools next season if he doesn’t return to UW.
Braunstein and Hemphill would each be immediately eligible to play at any school next season regardless of division provided they graduate in four years. That’s a new NCAA rule used most notably this year by basketball player Kevin Kruger, who transferred from Arizona State to UNLV to play for his father, Lon.
As for Marlon Wood and trying to get a sixth year of eligibility, an extra year is difficult to get. I can think of only one player in the 10 years I’ve covered UW who has gotten one — receiver Patrick Reddick, who sat out two straight years with an injury. The real killer is if a player ever redshirted for voluntary reasons, as Wood essentially did because he spent one year doing nothing but running track. The NCAA almost never then grants a sixth year for a player who sits out one year on purpose, then has injuries that make him sit out another year. And in Wood’s case, he played quite a bit last season and past the deadline to get a redshirt. So his case is a tough one to get.

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