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Sunday, May 20, 2018

Eric Bledsoe, Kentucky Off the Hook After Grade Change Review

The University of Kentucky dodged a bullet when a review of former guard Eric Bledsoe’s transcripts upheld his grades. Bledsoe was one of the five Kentucky players selected in the first round of the NBA draft in 2010, getting drafted by the Thunder and immediately traded to the Clippers. In question were his high school grades that got changed to make him eligible for the NCAA and Kentucky.

The real matter at hand involved an Algebra III class in which Bledsoe received a “C.” Bledsoe apparently did makeup work and was able to get the grade changed to an “A.” While getting a grade changed based on makeup work is a standard practice, Bledsoe conspicuously had 17 of 24 marks in the books changed to result in the A. I could understand having a test or two or a few assignments changed, but having 17 of 24 marks changed means the teacher was extremely flexible or extremely accommodating (or on the take).

There’s one part of the entire investigation that doesn’t make sense to me. Based on some excellent legwork by Al.com (make sure to check out their story), Bledsoe’s first and second term grades were changed in November and December of 2008. That does not make sense to me because the second term likely hadn’t even begun in December of 2008 (Bledsoe graduated from high school June 2009). How can you possibly have a grade changed for a course that hadn’t even started? Someone has to ‘splain me that one.

I completely understand teachers being flexible and willing to allow students a chance to make up their work. I also understand a student busting his butt to get his grades changed to become eligible. Going to night school to work things out is commendable. But there was a little too much fishiness going on for my taste and it sure seems like a few strings were pulled. Of course, with Bledsoe being associated with John Calipari and Kentucky, there’s no way it would have happened differently.

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