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Ex-hoops player Mo Alie-Cox not draft eligible, can sign at any time

Atlantic 10 Basketball Tournament - Semifinals

PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 11: Mo Alie-Cox #12 of the Virginia Commonwealth Rams in action against the Richmond Spiders during the semifinals of the Atlantic 10 Basketball Tournament at PPG PAINTS Arena on March 11, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

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Former Virginia Commonwealth basketball player Mo Alie-Cox is trying to make it in the NFL as a tight end, and he just got some good news: He’s not draft eligible.

The NFL has confirmed that Alie-Cox would have had to be drafted last year if he was going to be drafted, and is now considered a free agent who can sign at any time, before or after the draft.

That’s good news for Alie-Cox, as it gives him more flexibility to find the team that he thinks will do the best job of developing him into an NFL player, rather than having to go to a team that drafts him.

The 6-foot-7, 250-pound Alie-Cox averaged 9.5 points and 4.2 rebounds for Virginia Commonwealth last year but is not considered an NBA prospect. Cowboys tight end Jason Witten spotted Alie-Cox at a VCU basketball game and told him he has the right athletic makeup to be an NFL tight end, and Alie-Cox decided to give it a shot.

Alie-Cox has a workout scheduled for next week at which he’ll do the typical Combine workouts, tight end drills and then any other drills that teams ask of him, even at other positions if that’s what they prefer.

A handful of tight ends have made it to the NFL after playing only basketball, not football, in college, including Antonio Gates, Darren Fells, Demetrius Harris and Rico Gathers. Alie-Cox, who hasn’t played football since his freshman year of high school, may be the next.