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Breaking: Naseim Brantley absolved, Rutgers wide receiver is no longer in NCAA purgatory

Naseim Brantley is set to play for Rutgers football in 2024, the NCAA (finally) clearing the transfer portal wide receiver. Tuesday’s news ends a long and twisting saga that had kept Brantley off the field and ineligible to play according to the NCAA.

He has one year of eligibility left.

Brantley joined Rutgers football out of the transfer portal last year, following a standout season at Western Illinois. He sat out the past year waiting for NCAA clearance to be eligible to join Rutgers.

During that time, Brantley was fully enrolled at Rutgers and was with the team. During that time he was with the team, and participated in team activities like watching film. He just wasn’t able to represent the Scarlet Knights on the field.

In 2022, the last season he played college football Brantley had a standout showing for Western Illinois where he had 53 catches for 909 receiving yards with nine touchdowns.

Brantley is from Farmingdale, New Jersey.

 

He joins a receiving corps at Rutgers that has some depth and talent. In the transfer portal this offseason, the Scarlet Knights landed Dymere Miller out of Monmouth, adding a potential playmaker to the group.

Returning this season is Ian Strong, who as a true freshman showed flashes of his potential last year (16 catches for 230 yards with two touchdowns).

In his college football debut against Northwestern, Strong made the SportsCenter Top 10 with a highlight reel touchdown catch.

Also returning is Christian Dremel, who had a breakout season for Rutgers and was their leading wide receiver in 2023.

As for Brantley, it is a solid addition to a Rutgers offense that made gains last year under offensive Kirk Ciarrocca.

In late September, Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano was asked about Brantley’s status and why he was unable to be cleared by the NCAA.

Schiano’s answer was clearly well-worded and cautious but spoke to the Rutgers head coach’s frustration at the situation.

“I just hope that it works out the way it should. I’m not saying it because it’s our guy. The way it should I believe that if you look at it from a neutral standpoint, he should be allowed to play so hopefully that happens,” Schiano said.

“You know, it would be a shame if it didn’t. It’s not what the purpose of the rule the way it is. So without getting into too much hopefully it works itself out.”

Story originally appeared on Rutgers Wire