Cody Larson has been cleared by the NCAA to play immediately at South Dakota State.
The Florida transfer received a legislative release waiver for a one-time transfer exception on Monday, meaning that he’ll have two years of eligibility remaining beginning in 2013-2014.
“We want to thank the committee and the NCAA for taking the time to look at Cody’s waiver,” head coach Scott Nagy said in a release. “We appreciate the fact that this ruling allows him the opportunity to be eligible to compete immediately.”
A star in South Dakota during his high school days, Larson couldn’t find a way to stay out of trouble once he committed to Florida. He was suspended from his high school team as a senior after an incident with prescription pain pills and was suspended by Florida following a bizarre incident outside a bar in Florida in which he allegedly tried to break into a car after sneaking into a bar after closing time to ask about a lost wallet.
He did not meet the requirements set forth by Billy Donovan to remain on the team after the 2011-2012 season, and thus spent last year focusing on improving his academics and life off the court instead of playing basketball.
Larson is a talented basketball player, and better than a typical Summit League athlete. With the Jackrabbits losing Nate Wolters to graduation this offseason, he’s the kind of pick-up that could help them avoid sliding back in the league standings. Larson hasn’t played in two years, but there’s something to be said for an athlete that has had his career taken away from him.
Larson is getting a second chance and, if he makes the most of it, the risk Nagy took bringing him in will look ingenious.