NCAA waiver permits ex-Gator Larson to suit up for South Dakota State

Former UF basketball player Cody Larson transferred from Florida after quitting the team prior to the 2012-13 season.

Doug Finger/Staff photographer
Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 10:46 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 10:46 p.m.

BROOKINGS, S.D. — The NCAA is allowing University of Florida transfer Cody Larson to immediately play for the South Dakota State University basketball team.

The former Sioux Falls high school standout decided earlier this year to transfer to SDSU after an unsuccessful stint with Florida, where he was troubled by off-the-court problems involving an arrest for a vehicle break-in.

Under NCAA rules, Larson would have had to sit out a year for transferring had he not been granted a waiver. The ruling gives the 6-foot-9, 231-pound forward two years of eligibility with the Jackrabbits.

“We appreciate the fact that this ruling allows him the opportunity to be eligible to compete immediately,” head coach Scott Nagy said in a statement Monday.

The addition of Larson could help ease the loss of Nate Wolters, a record-breaking SDSU point guard who was drafted by the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks earlier this year.

Larson told the Argus Leader newspaper and KELO-TV that he was “overwhelmed with joy” and thankful for the opportunity.

“It'll give me that little extra motivation during workouts,” he said. “It feels great.”

Larson's senior season in high school was cut short when authorities said he shared prescription pain pills with a teammate. His redshirt year at Florida was marred by an arrest for misdemeanor criminal trespassing, which violated his probation for the high school incident. He ended up getting more probation time.

Larson had his scholarship pulled prior to his third year in Gainesville, Fla., and he quit the team before the start of the 2012-13 season to focus on academics. He later decided to transfer.

“I definitely feel I can contribute to this team and I hope I can in any way possible,” he said. “Just got to find my role. I'm having a lot of fun playing — the coaches are giving me a lot of freedom, which is nice and gives me confidence.”

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