Report: Sanchez Eligibility Issues Stem from D.R. National Team

The source of Orlando Sanchez’s eligibility issues is a 3 minute 38 second cameo in a game for the Dominican Republic National Team in 2010, according to a report in the New York Times.

The current senior played for the national team as a 22-year-old in the same calendar year that he started playing for Monroe College in New Rochelle, NY.

“Orlando is a thoughtful, humble and focused young man who has worked diligently toward his goals,” said head coach Steve Lavin in a statement. “Our University continues to work in concert with the NCAA as we have throughout the waiver and appeals process.”

Sanchez is currently 24 years old and could suit up for the Red Storm in 2013-2014 if the NCAA reversed its decision.

According to the NCAA rules, every year of participation in organized competition following a player’s 21st birthday counts towards eligibility. In addition to the years spent at Monroe and the minutes played for the Dominican national team, Sanchez played eight games for a Dominican amateur club team after he turned 21, according to the Times.

The 6-foot-9 forward is being represented by Orr, who also assisted Shabazz Muhammad in his recent high-profile case for eligibility to play at UCLA. That appeal was successful.

“I just want to represent St. John’s the best that I can in the classroom and on the court,” Sanchez said in a statement. “I have dreamed of playing NCAA college basketball and I hope this dream can come true.”