N.Y. Times/Pete Thamel / FLW Tour- Nerlens Noel Open

You knew this one was coming, right? Our Ol' Fishing Buddy Pete Thamel is back on tour. This time it is the Nerlens Noel Open, and Thamel is going to try and land that lunker again.

Much like his big time fishing counterparts like Bill Dance and Roland Martin, Thamel has loaded up his boat and is going after that trophy for his wall. And he has his eyes squarely set on nailing a record-breaking size Kentucky Bass.

Seems that the NCAA is making inquiries into some people who had relationships with Nerlens in his days as a grade school and high school player. They had a conversation with Everett High School Principal Louis Baldi. Seems Baldi was expecting the NCAA to come sniffing around.

"I didn’t get any sense," Baldi said when asked about the conversation’s tone. "It was a conversation, very collegial. That was really it. They didn’t ask me any investigative-type questions."
Somehow this conversation seems to have become an event for Thamel, and he has his own version of "Deep Throat" informing him (doesn't he always?)-

A person who has been briefed on the N.C.A.A.’s inquiry said the topics officials were planning on inquiring about included Noel’s relationship with Chris Driscoll, a former Providence assistant who is close to Noel. Driscoll was barred this year from campus at the Tilton School, the New Hampshire boarding school where Noel has spent the past two years and is completing his final year of high school

It seems as though Thamel must have a desk inside the NCAA Clearinghouse, because he has information that I would think would be kept private by the NCAA unless they had reasons to make it so public. Seems as though they never do learn from their mistakes, as Thamel claims that they are investigating Noel's finances, his coursework, and his associates. Much the same as the Eric Bledsoe situation, Thamel seems to be shooting first and then pointing, as the parties surrounding Nerlens, including his teachers and school staff members knew that this was going to be an issue at the Tilton School where Noel has been the last two years. The headmaster of the school, Jim Clements told Thamel:

“I wouldn’t be surprised if they turned up,” he said. “Certain things that they ask us, we’d be happy to answer. Some stuff, we don’t know anything about. I’m sure we would cooperate, though.”

Clements said Noel was on track to graduate provided he completed the tasks required to reclassify — changing from a junior to a senior in academic standing.

He added that Tilton teachers had Noel’s “feet to the fire” as he had to make up work and class time missed so he could take college visits and attend all-star games. Clements said he expected Noel to finish his work and graduate at the end of next week.

Clements said he was unsure whether Noel would qualify academically for a scholarship. An athlete must reach a specified number on a scale that balances a standardized test score and a grade-point average. Noel is expected to take course work after graduation to help him qualify.

“I’m sure there will be a little drama, and such is life,” Clements said. “He and family and others were well aware of it when he decided to reclassify. It will get played out, but it won’t be here.”

Good luck with nailing that lunker, Pete. Seems you just need a little more seasoning on the tour before you can become the next Kevin Van Dam.

I just don't understand how Thamel keeps making a living on this Kentucky tour he is on. He never lands a fish, and so far he hasn't much more than gotten a line wet.