Grad transfer Ben Carter granted sixth year of NCAA eligibility
The NCAA has granted MSU forward Ben Carter a sixth year of eligibility on Monday, according to a release by MSU Athletic Communications.
The decision came after approving the medical hardship waiver submitted by MSU.
Carter joined MSU last season, but suffered a season-ending knee injury during a preseason workout. The 6-foot-9 Carter transferred to MSU after playing for a season at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Prior to his arrival at UNLV Carter played two seasons at Oregon. Carter sat out the 2014-15 season, his first with UNLV, under NCAA transfer rules.
“I feel blessed," Carter said in the release. "First of all, I want to thank the NCAA for granting the waiver, and everyone at Michigan State, especially in the compliance office, for all their hard work. I honestly didn’t know if the waiver would be granted, but I kept praying that I would be able to play one more year of college basketball."
In his 2015-16 season, Carter averaged a career-best 8.6 points and 6.0 rebounds in 22 games before suffering a season-ending knee injury on Jan. 30 to San Diego State. Carter started seven games and recorded double-digit scoring in 10 games and double-digit rebounds in three games.
In that same season Carter also shot 55.6 percent from the field, recorded two double-doubles and scored a career-high 16 points twice against Indiana and Colorado State.
“This is certainly good news for Ben," MSU head coach Tom Izzo said in the release. "Despite being injured all of last season, he was a positive addition to our team. Ben was a great teammate and looked for any way he could to contribute, never missing a practice. He’s worked extremely hard on his rehab, and still has a lot more work to do, but I’m happy that he’ll get a chance to take the court with us next season while also being able to finish his master’s degree. After two knee injuries there are never any guarantees, but I’m hoping that he’ll be able to contribute a little bit on the court and a lot off it.”
The deliverance of Carter for next season adds even more depth to the forward/center spot with the addition of Gavin Schilling, who comes back for his fifth-season after sustaining a season-ending knee injury last year and incoming freshman Jaren Jackson Jr.
The addition of Carter leaves Izzo with one open scholarship spot on the roster for next season. MSU is still in the running for Brian Bowen, a highly-touted prospect who played alongside Jackson at La Lumiere in Indiana.
Carter will also have the opportunity to finish a master's degree in Kinesiology with a sport administration concentration.
“When I first decided to transfer to MSU, I thought it would be just a quick eight-month stop," Carter said. "I never imagined I would form the strong bonds with my teammates that I have. Everyone embraced me as part of the family, even after my injury, and that only makes me more excited for next year. I look forward to finishing my master’s, and helping the team in any way I can.”