Eli Carter has been cleared to play immediately at Florida.
The Rutgers transfer received a waiver from the NCAA that will allow him to suit up this season. Carter left the program after a video of former Scarlet Knight head coach throwing balls at his players and using gay slurs directed towards them was made public.
Carter may not end up starting for Florida this season, but he’s a key addition to Billy Donovan’s back court. Scottie Wilbekin is working through his second suspension in the past year, and while freshman point guard Kasey Hill is talented, he may not be able to run the show on his own yet. Michael Frazier made the U19 team, but he’s an off-guard.
Carter is more of a scorer than he is a distributor — he averaged 14.9 points and 2.1 assists last season — but he’ll give Donovan more depth and flexibility in the back court as well as another ball-handler in case of emergency. Don’t be surprised to see him playing the same role as another Rutgers transfer, Mike Rosario, did the past two seasons with the Gators.
Florida would have been a preseason top ten team with or without Carter, but his addition makes the Gators that much more dangerous.
Carter is the fourth former Mike Rice player to be cleared to play this season, joining Derrick Randall (Pitt), Mike Poole (Iona) and Vincent Garrett (UW-Green Bay).