Before everyone dances naked in the streets, we ask that you pump the brakes for a moment. According to Mark McLaughlin, a UW commit who knows Que Johnson well, the WSU signee got his SAT results back and the news was positive. Johnson has been battling to get a qualifying SAT score and along the way Washington State fans have been waiting with bated breath.
So this is a step in the right direction.
So proud of my lil bro @Quejohnson for getting that sat score god is good!!!— Mark McLaughlin (@Markiemac1) May 24, 2012
However, a qualifying score doesn't mean everything is good to go. In fact, at this point, the score doesn't matter as much as one might think -- it does help things, but isn't the end all, be all.
Part of the problem concerning Johnson's eligibility was the score. There's a sliding scale that marries GPA and coursework with test scores. The sliding scale is used by the NCAA to determine whether an athlete qualifies.
In Johnson's case, the focus has been on the latter -- the test scores -- when it should be on the former -- the GPA and coursework. Keep in mind, little of this is his fault. Instead, he was enrolled at a school, Westwind Academy, that's under the microscope right now. The NCAA is taking a hard look at the coursework, and not just his.
There are a couple things that will raise the NCAA's eyebrows. The first is the number of SAT tries it took for Johnson to get that qualifying score. When the test has to be taken repeatedly, it likely raises a red flag with the NCAA.
Then there's the debacle at Westwind. Both Johnson and Richard Peters, who we know didn't qualify, were sent packing because of "financial issues," an assertion the school denies. Taking a look at the school's recent history, quite a few players have run into clearinghouse issues or were unable to get eligible at all. Again, this is a red flag and perks up my own spidey sense. Something odd is going on there.
Add it all up and it's likely Johnson will have to do battle with the NCAA Clearinghouse. I'm told the Cougars are already prepared for a Clearinghouse case and remain hopeful he'll get in when it's all said and done. But the Clearinghouse is a crap shoot -- as unpredictable as they come.
So the test score is a definite step in the right direction, but it remains likely that the NCAA will still put its hands on the case of Johnson's eligibility. For fans, that means even more waiting.