Indianapolis, IN, United States (4E Sports) – Senior guard Leslie McDonald will return to the North Carolina Tar Heels lineup against Texas after being cleared to play by the NCAA Wednesday.
He missed the first nine games of the regular season for receiving impermissible benefits.
The ban was for accepting the use of luxury cars, payment of parking tickets, a cellphone and lodging during the spring and summer of 2013.
North Carolina discovered McDonald’s violations on Oct. 24 and submitted a reinstatement request on Dec. 11.
McDonald must pay in full a restitution of $1,783 to a charity of his choice before North Carolina’s regular-season finale March 8 at Duke.
” I was very disappointed by Leslie’s actions, and he knows this. He has suffered the consequences of his actions, and I hope he has learned a lesson that I also hope his teammates recognize,” said North Carolina coach Roy Williams.
McDonald, a fifth-year player, is the lone scholarship senior on Williams’ roster. He averaged 7.2 points per game last season.
Meanwhile, the NCAA said it has not received a reinstatement request concerning junior guard P.J. Hairston.
Hairston’s potential violations was for using premium rental cars paid for by third parties. He averaged a team-leading 14.6 points per game last season.
Both players have participated in practice while they have been ineligible to play.