An arrest warrant has been issued for 21-year-old Lansing native James Nash, the Mount Pleasant High School transfer discovered to be too old to play high school football.
Nash, who used the alias ‘Javier Jones,’ forged legal documents in order to pass as an 18-year-old to be eligible to compete in high school sports. Nash is wanted for a one-year misdemeanor for violation of a vital record and could face a $1,000 fine, if convicted.
Teachers at Mount Pleasant High School are still shaking their heads that this has happened, MPHS Athletic Director Jim Conway said.
“I just think that if anything, maybe we should try to get to know the individual a little better. Meet with parents or guardians to air any concerns we have upfront,” Conway said. “Even though we have close to 500 athletes, it’s a family atmosphere in Mount Pleasant. We take pride in knowing one another and working with each other.”
The forgery was discovered when Conway received an anonymous phone tip from a parent, Central Michigan Life reported previously.
Nash admitted to paying $10 to someone to have his birth year changed from 1991 to 1994 on his birth certificate in order to make him an eligible age to participate in high school sports.
Conway said he did not see any major changes taking place in the future of MPHS athletics as a result of the incident.
“I don’t think there will be any procedural changes,” he said. “If anything, we may slow down the process with any new or transfer students.”
The MPHS Oilers were forced to forfeit their final five regular season games because Nash competed in all of them, leaving them with a 2-7 record rather than 4-5.
Despite the incident, Conway said he is hopeful for the future of MPHS sports and said this is a way to promote better understandings of students and their backgrounds in the future.