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May 16, 2008

Eligibility of Kansas' Arthur being questioned

Officials are investigating whether Kansas basketball star Darrell Arthur was eligible to play in high school, which could affect whether he should have ever played for the national champion Jayhawks, according to a television report.

South Oak Cliff High School in Dallas, which already has forfeited its 2006 title because of improperly altered grades for another player, is investigating whether Arthur's grades also were improperly altered, WFAA-TV in Dallas-Fort Worth reported.

The 6-foot-9 Kansas sophomore was second on the NCAA champion Jayhawks in scoring at 12.8 points a game and second in rebounding. He has applied for early entry into the NBA draft.

According to a former teacher and transcripts obtained by WFAA, Arthur was not passing math as a junior but his grade was changed without the teacher's knowledge.

Arthur was a five-star prospect and rated as the No. 16 player in the class of 2006 by Rivals.com. The McDonald's All-American led South Oak Cliff to consecutive state titles, earning tournament MVP both times.

The station said the NCAA told its reporter that if a player is found to be ineligible, his college team might have to forfeit any or all games involving that student.

However, Jim Marchiony, KU's associate athletic director for external affairs, said he believed that the investigation into Arthur would not affect the school's basketball program.

"This is something that happened in high school," Marchiony said. "Everything that is discussed right now is speculation. I know the media and fans like to speculate, but that's not something we participate in."

Marchiony said high schools send athletes' transcripts to the NCAA, which determines whether an athlete is eligible to play in college. Because the NCAA declared Arthur eligible, Kansas would not have known about any grading problems in high school, he said.

"I believe that the school district is looking into it," Marchiony said. "Right now, the only thing any of us can do is wait to see the result of that process."

For more coverage of the Kansas Jayhawks, check out JayhawkSlant.com.

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