More potential problems surrounding Dylan Cozens and the Chaparral baseball team have emerged.
The senior slugger was ruled ineligible for a calendar year on April 19, 2011, after getting kicked off the Desert Mountain baseball team last spring and attempting to play at Chaparral following an immediate transfer. He sat out the final portion of the 2011 season, but has played in each of the team’s first six games this season.
The Arizona Interscholastic Association bylaw 15:10:10 states that a player removed from a team for disciplinary reasons is ineligible to play at another school for one year.
Chaparral baseball coach Sam Messina believes Cozens is eligible, but AIA Chief Operating Officer Chuck Schmidt said the school has been contacted for further information. Although Schmidt said he would need to examine the case more closely, his initial feeling was that Cozens is ineligible for 365 days from the day he enrolled at Chaparral, which was in early April of 2011.
Messina declined to delve into specific eligibility questions surrounding Cozens, but pointed out that Cozens played football in the fall.
“I’m assuming he’s eligible,” Messina said Wednesday. “I’m playing him.”
Schmidt said Cozens was eligible to play football because he did not play the sport at Desert Mountain prior to the transfer.
The Firebirds are 3-3 overall and 1-0 in power point games heading into Friday’s power point game against Phoenix North Canyon. Cozens hit a home run during the Firebirds’ victory against Pinnacle on Thursday. He has five home runs this season.
If Cozens is ineligible, Chaparral will likely forfeit all victories it has accumulated with him in the lineup.
Cozens signed with the University of Arizona in February, and will play both football and baseball if he goes to college. He is also expected to be selected in June’s Major League Baseball amateur draft and could choose to turn professional.