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The college recruitment of Elgin senior point guard Arie Williams is back to square one.
The honorary captain of the 2012-13 Daily Herald all-area boys basketball team in the Fox Valley, a University of Tampa coach told Williams Monday that the scholarship offer he received from the Division II program during an official campus visit on March 29 was rescinded.
"I got a call on Monday night," Williams said. "It was supposed to be about faxing them my transcripts and them faxing me all the information about signing and everything like that. But when (assistant) coach (Justin) Pecka called me, he said there was a problem. He said a (current player) they didn't care for was going to transfer, but he didn't transfer so they didn't have the extra scholarship they thought they would have. They only had one scholarship instead of two, and they had a big man they wanted to bring in."
The news came as a shock to Williams, who told other interested schools weeks ago he had committed. He said Tampa subsequently offered him a roster spot as a preferred walk on, which he declined. Williams said he was misled.
"What kind of messed me up is how you offer a scholarship that isn't there, basically a scholarship they didn't have," he said. "I don't feel you should base an offer of a scholarship on whether or not someone else leaves. My dad made it real clear to ask whether they were offering me a full ride. All the questions were asked. They just didn't come through."
Calls to Pecka and University of Tampa head coach Richard Schmidt were not returned Wednesday afternoon.
Williams immediately reached out to Division II Barry University in Miami Shores, Fla., which plays in the same Sunshine State Conference as the University of Tampa. Barry had shown interest in Williams prior to his commitment to Tampa.
Williams played four years of varsity basketball at Elgin High School, where his 1,321 career points rank fourth in program history. He led all Fox Valley area scorers last season with 622 points (22.2 ppg) to go with 121 assists, 69 steals and 97 rebounds.