Florida State wide receiver and senior-to-be Corey Surrency's life has taken several twists. As the Orlando Sentinel reports:Surrency dropped out of high school in the ninth grade, he said, to support his family. He served jail time, 90 days, after being charged with various crimes, some felonies. He decided to make something of himself. Earned his diploma. Began playing football. Wound up at a California community college, then at Florida State.
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Before enrolling at Florida State and before enrolling in El Camino Community College, where Surrency played for two seasons, he played with the Florida Kings, a South Florida "minor league" football team that has helped athletes with troubled pasts to earn opportunities to play in college.
Quite the saga. But there's a new twist, and it's the cruelest yet:A little-known NCAA rule has jeopardized his future.
The rule is No. 126.96.36.199 in the NCAA Division I Manuel. It is titled, "Participation After 21st Birthday," and it mandates the following: If an individual participates in an organized sport after his 21st birthday, but before enrolling in college, that participation "shall count as one year of varsity competition in that sport."
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Surrency played with the [minor league] Kings after he had turned 21. Had he not, he might never have had the chance to go to college. Regardless, though, his time with the Kings has cost him his final year of eligibility — at least for now. Florida State is appealing on Surrency's behalf.
If FSU loses the appeal, Surrency's college football career would be over. It's likely, too, that his pursuit of earning a degree in criminal justice — Surrency would become the first member of his family to earn a college degree — would also be over.
The rumor mill is that he is trying out for the UFL. Good luck to him.