Playing status to be determined

Updated: January 14, 2004, 2:40 PM ET
Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The eligibility of Argentine basketball player Diego Romero of Florida State was restored by the NCAA on Monday.

Romero's reinstatement was announced by the school, and a decision on whether he will play this season or take a redshirt year has not been made. Romero was traveling with the team, which plays Tuesday at Clemson.

Romero missed 15 games on an amateurism violation, but Florida State contended he should have been exempted under the rules in place when he began playing basketball at a Texas junior college.

The NCAA management council, which met Sunday at the group's convention in Nashville, Tenn., said athletes enrolled in any college before Aug. 1 will be evaluated under the previous standard. The rule was made stricter in October 2002, increasing the maximum penalty for amateurism violations to 28 games.

In November, the NCAA told Florida State that Romero "compromised his amateur status" by signing two pro contracts in Argentina to receive $2,400 in living expenses. The school argued he didn't intend to become a pro athlete.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press

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