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NC State freshman Omer Yurtseven suspended 9 games

NC State center Omer Yurtseven has been suspended for nine games by the NCAA, the school announced Monday.

The 7-foot freshman earned money playing overseas in Turkey before arriving at NC State and will be required to pay $1,000 to a charity of his choice.

"The NCAA conducted a thoughtful analysis of Omer's situation," NC State athletic director Debbie Yow said in a news release. "Their staff exhibited considerable concern for fairness and for the welfare of this conscientious young man in their decision."

Yurtseven will be eligible to participate in all practices and exhibition games.

"It's been a long process, almost four months," Yurtseven said after the NCAA announced the suspension. "I'm happy that we have an idea of what we're going to do so that we can move on. It was a relief, for real. Everybody was asking, 'Are they going to decide today?' It just kept on going."

"I'm disappointed for Omer," NC State men's basketball coach Mark Gottfried said via news release. "He has been patient and 100 percent forthright. We will adapt and integrate him in as soon as possible."

Yurtseven heaved a sigh of relief after he learned that spending the previous three years playing for the Turkish pro club Fenerbahce didn't undermine his eligibility. In 2011, former Kentucky player Enes Kanter was ruled permanently ineligible by the NCAA after playing for the same team.

"I only heard that he [Kanter] got ineligible after the same conditions, the difference is the club tried to make him ineligible so they had pushback in it. That may be the biggest difference," Yurtseven said. "And I didn't touch the money, I heard he did. That probably had an impact too."

Yurtseven, who compares his game to Tim Duncan, made headlines in May after finishing with 91 points, 28 rebounds and 5 assists in a Turkey under-18 game.

Previously at the European Championships, Yurtseven averaged 9.8 points and 8.7 rebounds in 2015 and 15.1 points and 8.1 rebounds at the U16s in 2014.