Finch receives NCAA waiver

33 comments by   |   Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 10:18 am EDT


IU has just announced that safety Jerimy Finch has received a waiver that will allow him to play in games this season, rather than sit out a year after transferring from Florida.

Here’s the entire release from IU:

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Ian Rickerby, Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance, announced Thursday that he has been notified by the NCAA that the Subcommittee on Legislative Relief (SLR) waiver submitted on Jerimy Finch’s behalf has been granted. The ruling is consistent with similar cases involving extenuating personal circumstances.

This means that the sophomore safety will be able to compete immediately for Indiana University beginning this fall. The Indianapolis native came to IU this summer after attending the University of Florida a year ago.

The 6-1, 215-pounder appeared in three games at linebacker for the Gators before suffering a broken leg vs. Tennessee that ended his season. He collected seven total tackles (four solo) and was one of three true freshmen to record an interception. Finch picked off his pass against Tennessee and added three tackles in the Gators’ victory.

He attended Warren Central High School, where he was rated the No. 1 safety in the nation by and the top player in the Hoosier state by and in 2007. As a senior, he helped lead Warren Central to its fourth consecutive Class 5A state title, the first high school football team to accomplish that feat in the state of Indiana. Finch collected Class 5A all-state honors in both his senior and junior years.

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Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 10:26 AM EDT

Great news!

#2 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 10:36 AM EDT

This is great, I can remember the first time I seen him play in High School, I was amazed by his speed and ability to flow to the ball and make big plays. Then I looked at the roster, and this kid was only a freshman. This is great for the IU defense.

Juan Blanco
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 10:50 AM EDT

So, how is his leg???

Chad B.
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 11:17 AM EDT

Congrats Jerimy! I’m really excited for our Defense this year!

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 11:25 AM EDT

It’s looking like Sports Illustrated’s estimate of one win for IU might be just a little bit off.
I hadn’t heard that he was playing linebacker in Florida. What were they thinking?

Bob Dole
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 11:34 AM EDT

This is potentially very good news, though I know I’ve seen some articles that have mentioned that Finch is still limping noticeably….

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 11:35 AM EDT

It sounds like IU’s defense just got a whole lot better!

#8 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:09 PM EDT


If I remember right, Florida returned two very good safeties last year. They converted Finch over to play linebacker to get him on the field. The didn’t want to waste him as a back up.

Bob Dole,

I didn’t notice much of a limp last weekend at the scrimmage. Like Doug Wilson said in his coverage of the event, Finch had one of the hardest hits of the day.

#9 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:13 PM EDT

Juan- Good question, my guess would be he’s not going to be back to where he used to be.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:23 PM EDT

Great news. Get him out there. I am pumped for August 30. If we beat anybody with Kentucky in their name it will be sweet.

#11 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:29 PM EDT

I was one of those who wrote about Finch limping his first day or two of practice, but I haven’t noticed that lately. Finch said his left ankle, which was broken last season, isn’t 100 percent yet, but he’s working on it. Bill Lynch said he thought the limping might have been caused Finch being sore because he hadn’t worked out as much as the rest of the team during the summer, not because of the ankle. Lynch said he wasn’t aware of any significant ongoing limitations or problems with the ankle.

I talked early this week with IU safeties coach Mike Yeager about how Finch would fit into the mix if he got clearance to play this season. Yeager said he’d cross that bridge if and when he came to it, and that Finch is still learning as a true sophomore who’s new to IU’s defense.

“Jerimy’s got a long way to go,” Yeager said. “He’s got to learn to play hard. He’s got to learn to stay on his keys. He’s got to learn to tackle better. But he is working every day, he is getting better.”

Yeager had a lot of good things to say about the improvements junior strong safety Austin Thomas and junior free safety Nick Polk have already made. So, listening to Yeager, it sounded like Finch is really going to have to earn playing time.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:39 PM EDT

Hope he pushes them and earns some field time

B in MD
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:39 PM EDT

Hey Doug,

Thanks for the update. Maybe Coach Yeager was just trying downplay Lynch a bit since he wasn’t sure if he would be around or not this season?

Because, how is it that Florida (the defending national champs last year) switched his position just to get him on the field as a true freshmen, but IU is saying he still has a lot to learn and how good the guys ahead of him are?

I’m not suggesting that he doesn’t have more to learn or he can’t get better, but if Florida moved him to linebacker just to get him on the field, then you would think he’s start for IU? It just sounded like Yeager’s comments were basically saying, “don’t get too excited here.”

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:42 PM EDT

Word is that Urban meyer had a big hand in Finch getting his waiver. Sounds like he put in a nice word for him with the committee.

He will get on the field a lot this year, but I dont expect him to unseat either Polk or Thomas. Not early in the season at least. Those guys are both really good football players in their own right and they know the system much better than Finch.

#15 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:50 PM EDT


If that is true, I just found a little more respect for Coach Meyer.

B in MD
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 12:53 PM EDT

Definitely a class move by Meyer.

I agree that Polk and Thomas are really good players, but there has to be a spot on the field somewhere for Finch.

#17 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 1:01 PM EDT

B in MD,

I agree with you that Finch’s talent should get him on the field regularly this season. Besides the obvious facts that he saw playing time right away at Florida and was the nation’s top-rated safety coming out of high school, you can see his speed, hitting ability and ball skills as he plays for IU’s No. 2 and No. 3 defenses in practice.

But how and where does he find a spot on the No. 1 unit? Do they use some kind of rotation at safety? Does he unseat Austin Thomas at some point? Do they use three safeties at times? Does he line up at linebacker? Nothing I’ve seen in practice so far provides any clues to help answer these questions.

B in MD
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 1:11 PM EDT

Thanks for the update Doug, I guess that is going to be another compelling reason for people to start tuning into and attending IU football games.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 1:36 PM EDT

From watching film of Finch in high school he played a lot farther off the line of scrimmage than I’d seen most safeties play and would just hawk the ball like a cruise missile instead of employing any type of technique. He reminded me of a very raw Roy Williams so I’d agree with the coaches that he has a lot to learn.

That being said, our safeties last year were awful technique wise with Polk being converted from offense.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 3:12 PM EDT

Best part of this is he will receive a redshirt for last year, so even though he will be classified as a sophomore he will be able to take a fifth year if he wants it.

#21 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 3:28 PM EDT


Brian brings up a good point. Did Jerimy receive his medical redshirt for last season? If not, is there a plan to attempt to get it?

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 3:39 PM EDT

is that jerimy finch or Hancock’s will smith?

#23 Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 3:39 PM EDT


That is a good question and I don’t know the answer. We hopefully will have an opportunity to talk with Jerimy and Bill Lynch after practice tomorrow so we’ll try to find out about that.

Others have suggested to me that they expect Finch to be a player who can and will jump to the NFL after a year or two. So while there’s a possibility of him playing at IU four years if he gets a medical redshirt for last season, there’s also the possibility of him leaving early if he’s as talented as some believe.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 3:51 PM EDT

With the amount of spread offenses that IU will play this year, Jerimy will got on the field a lot. The defense already plans on using 5 defensive backs a lot; look for Johnson to be the odd man out of the base 4-3 defense. Look for Finch to be brought in for the Nickel position, but Kleinsmith, Burks, and even Drane got reps with 5 DBs. FYI, I predict Chris Adkins as the other starting corner.

Steve O
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 4:25 PM EDT

Agreed with pretty much everyone. You’ve got to get this guy on the field! The secondary got torched several times last year, and to not put him out there on every defensive down would really be a mistake. Finch is as talented as any player IU has. LET HIM PLAY!!!

J Pat
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 4:32 PM EDT

I cannot wait to see this kid HIT someone. I am truly excited. Not sure how much Meyer helped, from what I understand from people I trust…the NCAA is not a fan of the guy! I am just glad we will see him this year and I hope we do not rush him back too early from injury. With that said I will say that if he is healthy and is the better athlete…he should play now. Great day!!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 6:38 PM EDT

Great news!!!

B in MD
Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 8:26 PM EDT

If he’s the better player I hope he plays too, he better. I remember reading an article earlier in camp with Lynch quoted as saying that 3-4 freshmen would play this year, but he didn’t know who yet.

If you don’t know who then why put a number on it, what if 5-6 play well enough to earn time? Do you still stick to 3-4? I’m sure it was just coach speak with the media, but it made me wonder.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 9:10 PM EDT

The real question here is are they really going to let him where the man with the golden foot’s number? There has to be some unused number he can take instead.

Thursday, August 21, 2008 - 9:10 PM EDT


Drew Arnold
Friday, August 22, 2008 - 3:36 PM EDT


This is awesome news!!!!!!

Friday, August 22, 2008 - 5:17 PM EDT

Swampy, I suspect he was playing linebacker due to the extreme speed in the SEC. If you can play a big safety at LB, you can get a bit of a speed advantage at that position. That said, I don’t remember him, but that could be because I’ve tried to forget all aspects of the 59-20 beatdown the Gaytors put on Tennessee last year. It’s pretty much a requirement to show at least some enthusiasm for the ‘Big Orange’ while living in the state …….

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