KNOXVILLE – Tennessee’s basketball roster continues to grow and the latest addition is literally the biggest yet.
Uros Plavsic, the 7-foot transfer center, has been ruled eligible to compete by the NCAA’s Committee for Legislative Relief, effective immediately. Plavsic came to UT from Arizona State. The native of Serbia began his U.S. basketball journey at Hamilton Heights Christian Academy in Chattanooga.
Tennessee (10-5, 2-1 SEC) plays at Georgia (10-5, 0-2) at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Stegeman Coliseum in Athens, Ga.
“We appreciate the committee’s work as this process ran its course,” Tennessee athletic director Phillip Fulmer said in a statement released by the university. “We’re thrilled that Uros will receive his opportunity to compete and that he no longer stands to lose a year of eligibility. Our compliance staff put a great deal of work and persistence into achieving this outcome. This is the right decision.”
Before Plavsic, the Vols added freshman signee Santiago Vescovi for the start of conference play. He has started three games and is averaging a team-leading 14.3 points per game while shooting 55.6 percent on 3-pointers.
Plavsic redshirted last season at Arizona State and will be redshirt freshman for the Vols for the season’s duration. He initially had committed to Cleveland State but followed assistant coach Drazen Zlovaric to Arizona State. Zlovaric, a former UT graduate assistant under Vols coach Rick Barnes, was let go by the Sun Devils in April.
It was announced in early November that Plavsic had been ruled ineligible by the NCAA. The initial ruling also involved an appeal by the university. UT then filed a second appeal.
Fulmer said he was “stunned” by the initial decision.
Barnes said last Thursday that the Vols were hoping to hear something regarding Plavsic within the next 10 days.
“If it gets beyond that,” Barnes said then, “it probably won’t be worth playing him in terms of him losing a year.”
Plavsic and the Vols now have heard the news for which they were hoping.
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Dan Fleser is a 1980 graduate of the University of Missouri who covered University of Tennessee athletics for the Knoxville News Sentinel from 1988-2019. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org