Norvel Pelle Unlikely to Suit Up for Iona This Year; Poole Helps Rutgers Get Past Gaels
NEW YORK — Norvel Pelle is unlikely to suit up for Iona this season — and may never wind up playing with the Gaels.
The 7-footer from California is not currently on Iona’s campus and isn’t expected anytime soon.
“He hasn’t been cleared by the NCAA,” a source close to the Iona basketball team told SNY.tv following Rutgers’ 81-73 victory over Iona at Madison Square Garden. “He went to so many schools, they’re still probably trying to track down his paperwork.”
Asked if there was any chance Pelle would play for Iona this season, the source said, “Ninety-five percent, no. Miracles do happen.”
A onetime St. John’s commit, Pelle pledged to Iona in August amid comparisons to Kevin Durant.
But he was not cleared by the NCAA in 2011 when he was supposed to enroll at St. John’s, and nothing has changed since then.
“Yes, I’m waiting on the NCAA,” Pelle said in August.
Iona does expect 6-8 forward David Laury for the team’s Dec. 20 game at La Salle. Laury had to sit out the first semester due to NCAA initial eligibility regulations.
“They’re a good basketball team,” Rutgers coach Mike Rice said. “They’re a great offensive basketball team. As soon as they get some of the guys sitting out, that’s a 20-win team.”
**For more on how Rutgers’ Mike Poole scored a career-high 18 to help Rutgers win the game, click here.
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.