As if ever-mounting eligibility conflicts weren't enough turmoil for the state's number-one-ranked basketball squad: Miami-Dade Police have issued a warrant for Krop High star guard Angel Rodriguez's arrest after he skipped a court date yesterday.
19-year-old Rodriguez, whose play has propelled Krop to a district championship this year, was due in court to answer to criminal traffic charges. On January 11, he was ticketed for going 57 in a 30 MPH zone without a driver's license. Once caught, his bond will be set at $2,000.
Dr. Michael Krop High's boy's basketball team-- run by notorious coach Shakey Rodriguez-- was briefly disqualified due to immigration paperwork problems surrounding player Brian Delancy. The team was reinstated by a local judge, but Riptide discovered that Delancy's addresses, as registered in school district data, were bogus.
On Monday, we exposed that addresses registered to Angel Rodriguez and another player, Trevin Joseph, also appeared to be fabricated.
Florida High School Athletic Association executive director Roger Dearing wasn't exactly shocked to hear that latest revelation. In fact, he told us, in December his organization had received a tip that Delancy, Angel Rodriguez, and a third player-- whose name he couldn't reveal because the student is a minor-- were living outside of the district.
High schools are obligated to investigate and self-report rules violations. So Dearing forwarded on the tip to Cheryl Golden, executive secretary of the Greater Miami Athletic Conference, he says, with the expectation that somebody at Krop High would look into the matter. "We never heard back from them," Dearing says, "so we assumed that there was nothing to the tip."
Golden hasn't yet returned a message seeking comment.
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According to the Miami Herald, Angel Rodriguez-- who has committed to play at Kansas State next year-- lives with his mother and two brothers since they moved from Puerto Rico in 2009. But when reached by phone, Angel's step-mother Sunita Rodriguez told Riptide that the student lives with her uncle, also named Angel Rodriguez.
She said she couldn't remember the exact address. The younger Angel's father lives in Orlando, she confirmed.
Sunita apparently knew nothing of Angel Rodriguez's legal problems. Her only, audibly stunned, reaction when told of the arrest warrant: "Wow."
She then called back and threatened legal action if "anything is published on my stepson" before quickly hanging up.