Villanova transfer G Johnson given permission to play for South Carolina by NCAA

Villanova transfer Tyrone Johnson was granted a waiver by the NCAA to play immediately for South Carolina instead of waiting until next month.

Gamecocks coach Frank Martin said Johnson would be eligible to play when the team opens the season Saturday against Longwood. Johnson is a 6-foot-3 guard from Plainfield, N.J., who left Villanova for South Carolina last January. He was not expected to play for the Gamecocks until mid-December after the first semester ended.

Johnson has practiced with the team since enrolling at South Carolina last January. He started nine games for Villanova in 2011-12, averaging 3.3 points over 32 games.