Fans of Canada’s Catholic Central High School were shocked to discover that Jonathon Nicola, the basketball team’s star center, is in fact a a 30-year-old man.
According to the Windsor Star, Nicola had been attending Catholic Central under the guise of a 17-year-old Grade 11 student after fleeing “South Sudan, his disease-ridden, war-torn home, for a better life in Windsor.”
After attending a mandatory Immigration and Refugee Board review on Tuesday, he was arrested by the Canada Border Services Agency for “allegedly contravening the Immigration Refugee Protection Act.”
“There’s really not a whole lot to say,” commented Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board Stephen Fields. “Because of the fact this is a matter that’s still outstanding before the federal authorities, obviously we can’t really comment on it. Beyond that there’s not a whole lot to say.”
“Generally I can tell you that we have a system of checks and balances in place that whenever international students are coming into any of our schools, we make sure that they have all of the necessary government documentation that they require in order to be in one of our schools,” Fields added. “Again, generally speaking, if we felt at any time that there is any kind of threat to any of our students at any of our schools, then we would act appropriately.”
Nicola had been living with head coach Pete Cusumano, who went so far as telling the Windsor Star back in January he thought the 6’9, 200-pounder could even make the NBA.