WATCH:

Prep Rally

Northwestern rejects basketball recruit for academic reasons despite perfect 4.0 GPA

Prep Rally

One of the nation's most prestigious institutions with a vibrant Division I athletic department has found its admissions policies for prospective athletes come under question for rather odd reasons: Critics are saying that the school isn't bending enough to accommodate athletes, rather than bending too much.

View photo

.
Rejected Northwestern commit Mislav Brzoja — FIBA Europe

Rejected Northwestern commit Mislav Brzoja — FIBA Europe

As noted by Rivals.com and Northwestern blog Lake The Posts, Northwestern's basketball program recently failed in its attempt to gain admission for Croatian prospect Mislav Brzoja, despite the fact that he boasts a pristine 4.0 GPA from Indianapolis (Ind.) Trader's Point Christian Academy. Another Northwestern commit, 6-foot-11 center Alex Olah, was admitted from the same school earlier this spring.

While the rejection of a mid-tier prospect from a Division I program with tough academic standards might not usually turn heads, the fact that it came when that prospective student boasted a 4.0 GPA and one of his prep teammates had already been admitted raises unique questions. There is no sentiment that Trader's Point Christian is a "diploma factory"; if that was the case, Olah would not have been admitted, either.

[College Basketball Roundtable: How will Mizzou and Texas A&M fare in the SEC?]

According to Lake The Posts, the concerns of the Northwestern admissions committee likely centered around Brzoja's academic record in his native Croatia. When combined with the fact that Brzoja didn't attend Trader's Point Christian for his entire high school career, the Northwestern admissions department determined that his academic record was not sufficient for admission into the school.

While no numbers from Brzoja's European academic career have come to public attention, the teenager allegedly didn't perform as well in those classes as he did once he moved to America. While some transfer athletes might have been able to avoid using any prior high school work from outside the country, Brzoja had to petition the NCAA to include prior credits from Croatia to graduate with the Class of 2012.

As it would on many teams, Brzoja's loss will be keenly felt in Evanston. The graduating senior, who now plans to attend Dayton, was an impressive contributor to the Croatia U-18 team at the 2011 European Championships, where he averaged 13.7 points-per-game while turning heads with his shooting accuracy.

Those traits could have been sitting on the Northwestern bench come next fall. Instead, they'll now be found to the Southeast in the Atlantic 10, despite a GPA of 4.0.

Want more on the best stories in high school sports? Visit RivalsHigh or connect with Prep Rally on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
Johnny Ludden: LeBron James returns to NBA Finals with purpose and poise
Chad Ochocinco agrees to terms with the Miami Dolphins
Y! Autos: Nine great road-trip cars

View Comments (1)
  • "Beast" Mtawarira to equal Bok prop record

    "Beast" Mtawarira to equal Bok prop record

    South Africa’s Tendai Mtawarira will equal two-time World Cup winner Os du Randt’s record as most-capped prop for the Springboks after being named in the starting line-up for the Rugby Championship clash with Argentina in Salta on Saturday. Lourens … More »

    Reuters - 11 minutes ago
  • More Olympic athletes back on home soil

    For the second day in a row, Canadian Olympians returned home from the Rio Olympics to excited crowds of loved ones and fans. Runner Andre De Grasse of Markham, Ont., who won a silver and two bronze medals, was the first to walk through the arrival … More »

    The Canadian Press - 18 minutes ago
  • Pique expects Barcelona to benefit from Neymar's Olympic glow

    Pique expects Barcelona to benefit from Neymar's Olympic glow

    (Reuters) - Neymar should return to Spain with renewed enthusiasm after leading Brazil to their first soccer gold medal at an Olympic Games, Barcelona defender Gerard Pique said. Neymar, who has scored 85 goals in 141 games in his three seasons at … More »

    Reuters - 31 minutes ago
  • Wales manager Coleman eyes job in Europe

    Wales manager Coleman eyes job in Europe

    (Reuters) - Wales manager Chris Coleman has distanced himself from a return to the Premier League, indicating that he might prefer to work in Europe when his time in charge of the Euro 2016 semi-finalists ends. Coleman, who has had previous spells … More »

    Reuters - 43 minutes ago
  • ICC sanctions loom over 'poor' Kingsmead, Queen's Park Oval

    ICC sanctions loom over 'poor' Kingsmead, Queen's Park Oval

    Durban's Kingsmead and Queen's Park Oval in Port of Spain risk sanctions after outfields at both venues were rated as "poor" by match referees following drawn tests this week, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said on Wednesday. The first … More »

    Reuters - 1 hour 1 minute ago