UND’s Kallay loses eligibility battle with NCAA

by Brad Unangst

North Dakota hockey player Ian Kallay, a high-scoring forward for the team during the past two seasons, won’t be back next year to help the Sioux defend their NCAA title.
Kallay and UND were notified last week by the NCAA that the sophomore’s appeal for more college eligibility was denied, ending Kallay’s college career after only two years of ice time for the Sioux.
Kallay lost eligibility because, prior to entering the University of North Dakota as a freshman in 1995, he was enrolled as a full-time student at a community college while playing for the Langley Thunder of the British Columbia Junior Hockey League.
“He was told by coaches and by the NCAA people that he only had two years of eligibility left when he enrolled,” said head coach Dean Blais. “He’s a great kid. It’s just a shame.”
According to NCAA rules, student-athletes are allowed five years of athletic eligibility and four years of athletic participation.
“(The NCAA) classified him as a full time student, so his clock for eligibility had started ticking,” said Beth Burr, assistant sports information director at UND.
Kallay filed an appeal with the NCAA to add two years to his athletic eligibility when he arrived at UND.
To enter a Division I school as a freshman and receive an athletic scholarship, a student-athlete must register with the NCAA Initial-Eligibility Clearing House and not have attended college full time in the past.
The Clearing House determines if an athlete meets the three standard academic requirements established by the NCAA. Kallay met the academic requirements, but he filed an appeal with the NCAA to request admittance at UND as a freshman with four years of athletic eligibility.
Now Kallay has limited options.
“He’s going to try to get a pro contract,” Blais said. “He’s a good prospect, but he doesn’t possess great speed.”
Two more years of college hockey would have better prepared Kallay for the NHL.
“It’s just too bad for the kid,” Blais said.