Ivy League's No Redshirt Rule Lends a Hand in Rosenberg's Columbia Withdrawal


Senior forward on the Columbia men’s basketball team Alex Rosenberg fractured his foot during a drill in practice a few weeks ago, and has since withdrawn from Columbia for the remainder of the school year.

After the injury occurred, Rosenberg was told that he would not be able to play for as long as four months. Unfortunately for Rosenberg, the Ivy League does not allow redshirt years, which enable injured players in many other NCAA conferences to extend their time in college in able to play longer after their injuries are healed.

In order to return to the basketball team once he is physically able, Rosenberg had to withdraw from classes. This is because Columbia restricts enrollment to eight semesters for all students, deeming redshirt years or “super seniors” violations to the rule.

Her Campus Barnard reached out to Rosenberg and got information from him about his injury, his time off of school, his aspirations with regard to basketball, and his unwavering support of the Columbia Lions. Following is our Q and A with Rosenberg.

Q: Do you plan to pursue a career in basketball upon graduation?

A: Yes, I intend to play professionally after I graduate. It has always been a dream of mine and I look forward to fulfilling it.

Q: Does taking another year to graduate pose a threat to your post-grad plans? If it does, how so?

A: Especially after the success of last season, I knew I wanted to go pro. Whether it poses a threat is a tough question because many scouts have different opinions. NBA scouts love looking at potential, and that is usually associated with younger players, especially those who leave early from college to pursue a professional career. However, there are also benefits because I will be more experienced, more mature, and will have had more time to develop as a player and a person, which would make me a appealing so that I am able to help a team right away. Whether I am fortunate enough to play in the NBA or overseas remains to be seen, but I think I will be a much better player next year than I would have been this season because I will have more time to improve.

Q: What will you be doing this year while you are not studying at Columbia?

A: I'm currently recovering at my home in New Jersey as my foot heals. I'm on crutches for 6 weeks, so it would be brutal to get around in the city. Once I am further along in my recovery, I intend to find an apartment in the city so I can still be with my friends and teammates off the court. I'll also have an internship in the city to keep me busy while I rehab and begin to workout again. I will be close by to support the team and intend on attending all home games.

Q: Do you know of other students who have been in your situation and had to withdraw due to a sports injury?

A: As a matter of fact, one of my teammates, a senior on the team now, went through the same injury that I had, and had to take the entire year off. His injury occurred within the first week or two of school as opposed to mine happening right before the season.

Q: Is not being able to play basketball this year your main reason for withdrawing? Are there any other reasons?

A: The main reason I had to withdraw was simply that I will be in a cast and on crutches for at least 6 weeks, so I would not be able to attend any classes and it would be impossible to complete the semester. Also, the doctor informed me that the healing process is different for everyone so I did not know how long mine would take. Basketball definitely played a factor because with my injury I do not think I would have made it back this season, and I love playing so felt it was best to come back next season so I can have one more year with this team and bring something back to this University that we haven't had a in a long time: a championship.

Q: Do you expect a full recovery from your injury?

A: Yes, I expect a full recovery, especially considering I will be taking the recovery process slow and I was fortunate enough to have the surgery done by the best foot doctor in the city, Dr. Deland at HSS.

Rosenberg, who was named first-team All-Ivy League last season and set Columbia records for free throws made and attempted, is handling his injury in a commendable manner with a positive attitude. Although you won’t see him on the court this season, you can look forward to seeing him cheering on his team at all of the home games. He said, “I really look forward to supporting my teammates and hoping for the best season possible. We have a great team with an even better group of guys that are all very close, and that will show from the success. I look forward to being back out there next year!”