Charles Bassey, a member of the American Family Insurance ALL-USA Preseason Boys Basketball Team, has been ruled ineligible by the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools, executive director Bryan Bunselmeyer told the San Antonio Express-News.
The 6-10 Bassey, a sophomore who is the No. 2 player in the Class of 2019, averaged 20.2 points, 17.1 rebounds, and 5.9 blocks a game for St. Anthony (San Antonio), which was the TAPPS 5A state runner-up.
Bunselmeyer told the newspaper that Bassey will not be able to play for St. Anthony or another TAPPS school for the remainder of his high school career. He declined to say why but said it did not relate to age or academics. According to the school, another St. Anthony player also has been declared ineligible and two others are pending review, although their names have not been revealed.
“As far as TAPPS governance is concerned, he is not eligible in accordance with TAPPS governance,” Bunselmeyer said. “It’s not right for us to talk about specific reasons for his ineligibility. That would have to come from St. Anthony.”
In a lengthy statement, St. Anthony principal Dr. Rene Escobedo says the issue is related to “sponsorship by a charitable organization for tuition, room and board,” and said the students entered the school via the normal admission process and said “absolutely no inducement was made for them to attend St. Anthony.”
The school noted the investigation has gone on for months and it has been “completely transparent.”
Hennsey Auriantal was hired as the school’s athletic coordinator, but it is unclear if he remains with St. Anthony.
In a statement to Rivals.com, Bassey expressed his disappointment.
“I am disappointed that TAPPS will not let me play with my team this year,” Bassey said. “I played for St. Anthony High School last year and nothing about my situation has changed, so it does not make sense that they would declare me ineligible. I am a student-athlete that loves the game of basketball. All I want to do is play with my team.”