NORMAL -- Illinois State guard Candace Sykes will play for the Redbirds after all this semester.
ISU announced Monday that the NCAA granted the sophomore a waiver that makes her eligible to participate in games when the Redbirds tip off the season Friday night at Illinois.
Sykes initially was required to wait until the first semester before playing in games before ISU petitioned the NCAA. She transferred to ISU from Alabama prior to the start of the spring 2010 semester
"Receiving the waiver from the NCAA allowing Candace to participate in games this semester is excellent news," said ISU coach Stephanie Glance. "I know this is a relief for both Candace and her family."
The 5-foot-10 Sykes was an all-stater at Momence High School before choosing Alabama where she sat out her freshman season with Crimson Tide to rehabilitate a hip injury. She appeared in eight games last season and averaged 4.3 points and 2.0 rebounds before hip problems flared again.
Sykes was recruited by former ISU coach Robin Pingeton.