Senegal Basketball Recruit Denied Admission to Minnesota University Due to Poor English ScoresBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
Gaston Diedhiou, one of the two international recruits for the Gophers men's basketball team, has been denied admission by the University of Minnesota following poor performance in a proficiency test.
Diedhiou, a 6-foot-9 forward and native of Senegal, was cleared by the NCAA Clearinghouse but was not been given a green signal by the University as he fared poorly in the English proficiency test - Test of English as a FOREIGN LANGUAGE (TOEFL) .
Director of admissions Rachelle Hernandez said that the results are considered while selecting prospective students to the University.
"Our assessment is really related to can the student be successful academically and can they be successful in an English-speaking setting," Hernandez said. "Admissions decisions are never based on just one thing," Star Tribune reports.
As a result, Diedhiou, who played at the Canarias Basketball Academy in Spain last season, will be the only member of Minnesota's 2014 recruiting class to not be able to enroll in the fall semester.
Bakary Konate of Mali, another foreign prospect, gained admission two weeks ago after he passed a English proficiency exam. The 6-11 Sunrise CHRISTIAN Academy (Kan.) center is expected to take to the field this fall.
The University officials said that Diedhiou can retake the proficiency test before next semester to achieve eligibility status for the spring season. In the meantime, he is expected to participate in an English-intensive program on campus as a non-student this fall.
The Diedhiou incident has come at a bad time for Minnesota. The Gophers now only have two players taller than 6-9 on the roster - senior centers Elliott Eliason and Mo Walker - who are both in their final year of eligibility.
The athletic department expected power-packed performances from both international recruits in the 2015-16 season and the 2014-15 season as this period was seen as a critical period for their development.