NEWS 8 INVESTIGATES
Will Southlake Carroll's starting quarterback be declared ineligible to play in the Dragons' opening game Friday night?
It's an issue that may be settled Friday morning — just hours before game time.
The question arose this week from a News 8 investigation, and it has much of the world of high school athletics buzzing.
Our investigation raised questions into the eligibility and residency status of Southlake Carroll starting quarterback Daxx Garman.
Garman came to Southlake in February, days after being ruled ineligible to play in Oklahoma.
A local University Interscholastic League official ruled Garman eligible to play in Texas based on information provided to them by Southlake.
But a News 8 investigation raised new questions on the circumstances under which Garman came to Texas.
UIL rules prohibit an athlete from "changing schools for athletic purposes."
The key issue to be investigated by the District 7-5A executive committee Friday morning is laid out in UIL rules: "was the student in good standing at the former school?"
As News 8 has reported, Garman was, in fact, declared ineligible to play at Jones High School last year after the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association ruled his primary residence was in nearby Choctaw, and he was only temporarily residing in Jones.
Jones High School was forced to forfeit six district games — along with its district title.
According to OSSAA, "Garman did not re-establish eligibility at an OSSAA-member school prior to his family moving to Texas." That means Garman never re-qualified to play in Oklahoma this year.
Yet Southlake Carroll's Athletic Director Kevin Ozee told local UIL officials last spring that Garman was eligible to play, and he repeated that assertion to News 8 just days ago.
He said News 8 had "inaccurate information."
News 8 has learned the UIL District Executive Committee will call on Ozee to explain his position.
The committee will also summon former executive committee chairman Kevin Rogers, who oversaw the approval of Garman's eligibility this spring.
Now Rogers is concerned why the documentation News 8 uncovered conflicts with what his committee had been told.
"I understand that if that's the case, I would feel that I was or that the DEC was misled," Rogers said.
News 8 has also learned the new executive chairman has spoken with Oklahoma athletic officials and verified that Garman is ineligible to play in their state this year.
The Committee will then determine whether Daxx Garman moved to a rented house in Southlake for family reasons — or for athletic reasons.
If the UIL panel rules Garman ineligible, he will no longer be allowed to play for Southlake, pending a possible appeal by his family.