Basketball Memphis, Penny Hardaway take great risks with James Wiseman

There are risks and rewards when getting Penny Hardaway hired as Memphis men's basketball coach.

The rewards have been very rich so far. A No. 1 Recruitment Class. A full FedExForum. A national championship candidate. A return to relevance, both locally and globally college basketball world.

The risk came on Friday night, in the hours leading up to victory over Tigerers 92-46 against Illinois-Chicago. The risk is how all this happens.

It was a question that lasted under the surface for the past 12 months, once James Wiseman Commit to Memphis. It's a question that Memphis basketball fans are happy to skip and, judging by the remarkable cheers he receives every time his name is announced on Friday, they can still be like so.

But it is a question that is currently threatening to endanger what we all think will be a magical season. That is a question that can make Wiseman University's basketball career shorter than we thought. It was a question the NCAA thought it answered, and it didn't seem ready to step back.

This was evident after a soap opera that took place for hours in downtown Memphis.

James Wiseman waits to be introduced ahead of Memphis's match against Illinois-Chicago at FedExForum.

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First, the famous Memphis lawyer Leslie Ballin conducted a press conference inside his 12th floor offices …


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