There’s a reason why just about everyone passed on Enes Kanter.
They all knew it was a long shot — at best — that the Turkish big man would be cleared to play college basketball by the NCAA.
However, Kentucky coach John Calipari rolled the dice, figuring it was worth the risk to see if he could maybe find a way to get Kanter on the court in a Wildcats uniform.
The NCAA student-athlete reinstatement staff on Thursday night ruled Kanter permanently ineligible for receiving benefits “above his actual and necessary expenses” while playing for club basketball team Fenerbahce in Turkey.
Kanter played three years with Fenerbahce, and both Kentucky and the NCAA Eligibility Center agreed that he received $33,033 more than his necessary expenses for the 2008-09 campaign.
“Enes took advantage of an opportunity to play at the highest level available to him, but the consequences of receiving payments above his actual expenses is not compatible with the collegiate model of sports that our members have developed,” said Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president of academic and membership affairs, in a statement.