James Wiseman was moved to tears by his tumultuous struggle against the NCAA during his time in Memphis.
Potential number 1 in this year's NBA draft told ESPN in his first interview since retiring from school that he cried in his dorm every night before finally leaving after the NCAA imposed a 12-game ban for violating the rules , Wiseman said he didn't know the rules had been broken before the NCAA told him, calling the punishment "unfair" and the whole experience "dehumanizing."
The newcomer was suspended because he took on $ 11,500 in moving costs in 2017 from his future college coach Penny Hardaway, who was the coach at Memphis East High School and was not currently employed by the Tigers. The NCAA still considered Hardaway a booster because it donated a million dollars to the university in 2018.
"I was really in the middle of a hurricane," said Wiseman in an interview that aired on Friday. "This is the worst place you could be. I only have mental anguish and suffering and cry every night because I just wanted to be on the pitch so much."
The 7-foot has now signed with Excel Sports and is focusing on the upcoming design, where it could still be the first choice. He played three games for Memphis, averaging 19.7 points while shooting 77 percent.
After Wiseman dropped an injunction, he was suspended in November and had to pay the money back. Wiseman said he and his lawyers overturned the injunction that kept him from playing because he didn't want Memphis to come back anymore.
"I wanted to win a national championship," said Wiseman. “But in the course of the first two games, everything started to deteriorate mentally [well-being], I became depressed. It was dehumanizing for me. "
He found it unfair that the NCAA had informed him of the violations at the last minute, which shocked him.
"I really had no knowledge of it [the violation] or all the consequences behind it, ”said Wiseman.
Wiseman added that he ultimately ended his college career due to the risk of injury and the need to repay the $ 11,500 without being able to use an "outside source" such as a GoFundMe site launched by ESPN's Jay Williams.
"I had to get [the money] alone, and that was pretty much impossible because I didn't have the money, "said Wiseman." I was just a normal student. "
He currently trains twice a day to prepare for the draft and tries to gain weight. Wiseman is watching a film by Anthony Davis. Dirk Nowitzki and Karl-Anthony Towns are trying to improve his jump shot, hoping to still be number 1.
"I really expect that," said Wiseman.