In what would be an unusual instance of good news regarding a UNC player and an eligibility issue, Tar Heel defensive tackle Ethan Farmer has been cleared to play for the 2014 season the school announced on Thursday.
According to Inside Carolina, Farmer's status was in limbo while an appeal to the NCAA was being considered. The appeal was believed to be related to academic issues.
Farmer, a senior, is considered a vital piece to UNC's defensive line which is an area of concern heading into the season. Had Farmer not been available, UNC was looking at starting two redshirt freshman on the defensive line.
Last season, Farmer recorded 30 tackles, 2.5 of them for a loss. He also forced a fumble and had four quarterback hurries in 13 games. The Tabor City, NC product had a career high eight tackles in the 25-23 loss to Duke last season.
UPDATE: Statement from head coach Larry Fedora via UNC.
"We are thankful to have Ethan cleared to play and I know he's excited to have this behind him," said head coach Larry Fedora. “Ethan is our only experienced player on the defensive line and we’ll be counting on him for senior leadership in that group. He has practiced hard during the preseason and has not let this situation affect his preparation for the season."