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Since the Duke Lacrosse team lost to Johns Hopkins in the D1 Men's Championship game over Memorial Day Weekend, the N.C.A.A. has granted 5 Duke seniors, including national player of the year Matt Danowski, an extra year of eligibility because of the season they lost last year due to rape charges. My opinion is that this is a well deserved extension for some players that were put through hell for what turned out to be a false, malicous claim, but I'm curious to hear what anyone else thinks.
While I agree those guys were put through a lot, I have to imagine the extra year of eligibility is almost just a token gesture by the NCAA. Lacrosse is not like other sports (specifically the NFL) where guys are hoping to use that extra year of eligibility to prepare for the pro's. More often than not, these kids will have their degree after 4 years and the extra year of eligibility wouldn't even help them unless they decided to roll right into grad school. Again, it's a nice gesture, but I doubt it will end up meaning much.
I agree, it was certainly a token gesture by the NCAA, but whether it "means much" is relative. If you were to ask the guys given the extra year I bet they would be extremely happy to get a chance to come back for another season. Let's not forget that they just barely lost in the championship this year, so they will have a legitimate shot at a title if they return. Not many people get that opportunity twice, much less once.
I feel the NCAA did the right thing as far as the extended year goes. Not sure if we would even be dicussing this if Mike Nifong had done his job correctly. I feel for his family and his professional career, but he deserves everything that is about to come his way! That's all!