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Judge Upholds Dismissal of Top Pitcher

February 3, 2005

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ Texas right-hander Sam LeCure won’t pitch for the Longhorns this season after a federal judge on Wednesday upheld his dismissal from the university because he was academically ineligible.

LeCure, a junior who was projected to be the top-ranked team’s No. 1 starter, told The Associated Press that he would either play professional baseball, if drafted, or try to return to Texas next year.

``I’m not ready to leave the orange and white just yet,″ said LeCure, who went 3-1 last season with a 2.25 ERA and helped Texas reach the finals of the College World Series against eventual champion Cal State Fullerton.

LeCure had sought a temporary restraining order to enroll in the university this spring even though his grade-point average dipped below the required 2.0 after last semester. Court documents showed that LeCure was already on academic probation, the Austin American-Statesman reported in its online editions Wednesday.

LeCure’s lawyers argued that the pitcher, who was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, wasn’t provided enough accommodations by the university given his condition.

Texas was ranked No. 1 in three major preseason polls, and LeCure was expected to be a key contributor.

``It’s heartbreaking,″ LeCure said. ``I’ll feel if the team doesn’t win a College World Series this year, which I thought the team had a good shot at, I’ll feel like it’s my fault. I’m not saying by any means that I’m the team. I know that. But I think that with me we had a better shot.″

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