Shaquille O’Neal’s son, Shareef O’Neal, will not play basketball for the University of Arizona following a school scandal involving the school’s coach.
O’Neal, 18, announced the move to reopen his recruitment on Twitter Saturday.
“At this time I’m am opening up my recruitment due to the current events with the UofA Bball team,” he tweeted. “I would like to thank all the coaches for recruiting me. At the time my family and I think it’s in my best interest to look at other options to assure my play in the NCAA next year.” Shareef O’Neal went on to thank his coaches and “all the Arizona staff and fans for all the support they’ve shown my family and I.”
The FBI recently revealed that they had wiretapped conversations between the Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball coach Sean Miller and Christian Dawkins, who is a “runner” for sports agent Andy Miller. These recorded them offering a $100,000 bribe to recruit, Deandre Ayton, currently a high school freshman, to the team in the future.
These recordings have led to ten people being arrested, possibly with more arrests to follow. Dawkins and Arizona assistant coach Emanuel Richardson are two of those facing prosecution.
Shareef O’Neal had announced his commitment to the University of Arizona last April but had not signed a letter of intent. That means that he will not need Arizona’s permission to leave.
I wanted to send a personal thank you to coach miller , coach romar , coach phelps , and all the Arizona staff and fans for all the support they’ve shown my family and I.
— Shareef O’Neal (@SSJreef) February 24, 2018
Before committing to Arizona, O’Neal was rumored to be attending the University of Kentucky or to go to his father’s alma mater Louisiana State University.
At this point, no one knows where Shareef O’Neal will land but whatever school gets him is a lucky one.