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Technically, Carlwell is not applying for a medical hardship waiver since his five-year NCAA clock has expired and his sophomore season at Illinois was counted as a redshirt year. Instead, he is petitioning directly to the NCAA for a sixth year of eligibility based on what [coach Steve] Fisher calls "the whole package … of tremendously extenuating circumstances."
Massive head trauma can take months, even years, to overcome mentally and physically, and Carlwell has admitted he wasn’t "right" well into the following season.
"My equilibrium was thrown off," Carlwell told the Union-Tribune in a February 2010 interview. "Every now and then when I would walk, I would stumble. It was like I was really clumsy. Or things like a right-handed layup. I'm left-handed, so I had to rebuild that again … Everything was just a little off."