Jay Bilas Jay Bilas during ESPN College GameDay broadcast before Auburn Tigers men’s basketball takes on Texas A&M Aggies at Auburn Arena in Auburn, Ala., on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022.

Oregon Ducks center N’Faly Dante has dealt with some significant injuries throughout his collegiate career, playing sparingly in the early portions of his career. This led to Dante requesting an additional year of eligibility, a request that was denied by the NCAA.

Dante’s request came due to the belief that he could be given an additional year of eligibility after playing in just six games in his 2020-21 sophomore season.

Instead, the request was denied by the NCAA, which likely means that Dante will instead opt to declare for the upcoming 2024 NBA Draft. Oregon will reportedly appeal the NCAA decision. But if the NCAA stands firm on their decision, Dante’s collegiate career will be done.

Dante could very well hear his name called in the upcoming draft after averaging 17 points per game and 9.2 rebounds this past season. But still, it seems like Dante would have preferred to stay in college if given the opportunity by the NCAA.

Longtime ESPN broadcaster Jay Bilas took issue with the NCAA’s decision on Dante, taking to social media to offer his thoughts on the matter on Thursday.

“The NCAA’s treatment of Oregon’s N’Faly Dante is simply outrageous,” wrote Bilas on X, formerly known as Twitter. “This young man is EVERYTHING the NCAA claims it wants in an athlete. Dante has been injured throughout his career, and has played two full seasons less than players like Armando Bacot, yet he’s denied an additional year due to injury, ending his career.

“Absurd. Dante is a model athlete and person, wants to come back to play and advance his education, and has never asked his school for anything. When the NCAA says “athlete welfare,” it rings hollow. The NCAA needs to do the right thing…allow Dante his additional year. Immediately.”

Bilas does raise a great point on Dante’s behalf here. We’ve seen plenty of players like Armando Bacot and many others, especially due to the COVID-19 extra year of eligibility, be granted exemptions by the NCAA that had played far longer than he has.

Only time will tell whether the NCAA ultimately changes its mind on Dante’s request. Regardless, Dante will have until June 16th to decide whether he will enter the upcoming NBA Draft or not.

[Jay Bilas on X]

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.