Vols’ Santiago Vescovi cleared by NCAA

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    (Photo via UnoContraUno.com)

    Tennessee’s men’s basketball team finally got word from the NCAA on one of the players they’ve been waiting to hear back on.

    Tennessee early enrollee point guard Santiago Vescovi has been cleared by the NCAA to play immediately. Tennessee basketball’s twitter account released a video of Vescovi announcing the news on Friday afternoon.

    “Hello, Vol Nation,” Vesoci said. “They have given me the green light, and I hope to see and hear you all tomorrow in TBA.”

    Vescovi is expected to play on Saturday against LSU as conference play begins for the Vols. The Vols have lost three of four games and lost starting point guard Lamonte Turner for the season due to shoulder surgery, so the four-star point guard signee is a welcomed spark to the club.

    “It’s been impressive,” Rick Barnes said of Vescovi’s first week of practice on Thursday morning on the SEC coaches teleconference. “He’s had a lot thrown at him, but he’s done as well as I think anybody could possibly do in this situation. Where you come in and you’re really learning what college basketball is about. But again, I’ve been impressed with him just by the way he’s handled everything.”

    A native of Uruguay, Vescovi arrives in Knoxville after spending the last year at the NBA Global Academy in Australia. Vescovi was ranked a four-star point guard by 247Sports, and according to their rankings, is the No. 74 overall player in the 2020 class and the 13th-best point guard.

    Tip-off with the Tigers on Saturday afternoon from Thompson-Boling Arena is scheduled for 12 p.m. ET on ESPNU.

    Ben McKee is a graduate from the University of Tennessee and has a degree in Journalism and Electronic Media. He covers Tennessee football, basketball, baseball, and the Lady Vols for RTI, and he's also the host of the RTI Podcast. You can also hear Ben on the morning sports radio show "The Swain Event." He's the producer and co-host along with former Vol wide receiver Jayson Swain.