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Jewel of recruiting class ruled ineligible

Staff Report
Saturday September 01, 2001

Cal’s men’s basketball hopes took a nosedive on Thursday, as top recruit Julian Sensley was ruled ineligible for next season by the NCAA. 

Sensley, a 6-foot-8, 230-pound small forward, fell short of the minimum SAT score to play Division I sports. Cal appealed to the NCAA for Sensley to be eligible because of a documented learning disability, but were turned down. 

Sensley, ranked as the best small forward in the 2001 recruiting class by, was expected to jump directly into the starting lineup in departed star Sean Lampley’s spot. 

Sensley issued a statement following the NCAA ruling declaring his intent to file a personal appeal. 

“My goal is to pursue all avenues available to me to become eligible and be at Cal,” said Sensley, who will not be enrolled at Cal this fall because the school does not accept partial academic qualifiers. 

Cal guard Donte Smith won a similar appeal three years ago. Smith didn’t win his second appeal until January, however, and chose to redshirt the 1999 season. 

A native of Kailua, Hawaii, Sensley spent the past two years at St. Thomas More School in Oakdale, Conn. 

Cal head coach Ben Braun is still hopeful that his star recruit will be able to play this season. 

“Julian has not wavered on his commitment to Cal and he intends to pursue his options to become a full qualifier,” Braun said in a statement.