Quarterback Baker Mayfield Hires Johnny Manziel's Former Attorney To Fight NCAA for Eligibility

NCAA rules are sidelining Baker Mayfield until 2015 while his family — with the help of El Paso-based attorney and former Johnny Manziel lawyer Jim Darnell — submitted paperwork to the NCAA last week asking for a waiver allowing immediate eligibility, his father, James Mayfield, confirmed on Wednesday while adding that he’s optimistic an answer could come in days.

The Mayfields’ strategy continues to be the same as last January when they unsuccessfully appealed to overturn Texas Tech’s denial to contact OU: The player should be considered a non-recruited athlete and thus eligible for a one-time transfer exemption, which would come with immediate eligibility.

The Mayfields and Darnell, a longtime opponent on NCAA matters, are challenging a rule that allows Texas Tech “the discretionary abilities given to them by the (NCAA) bylaws,” Mayfield said.

NCAA rules can allow a one-time transfer exception to be applied in cases like Mayfield’s situation, strongly based on the fact the player was not recruited by Tech and was never on scholarship.

But the final requirement states, “If the student is transferring from an NCAA or NAIA member institution, the student’s previous institution shall certify in writing that it has no objection to the student being granted an exception to the transfer-residence requirement.”

Tech chose not to certify anything in writing.

The Mayfields made a last-ditch appeal to Tech recently, but again were denied as the Big 12 school continued to block Mayfield’s transfer. That led to the latest appeal to the NCAA.

“Whether people like Baker Mayfield or not or OU, it’s really about the silliness of the rules and how the coaches and institutions and the NCAA engage in this,” James Mayfield said. (More at Tulsa World)

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