The optimism Tennessee men’s basketball coach Donnie Tyndall had expressed about the arrival of Florida Gulf Coast graduate transfer Eric McKnight ended Tuesday.

The SEC denied McKnight’s request for a graduate transfer waiver, and the 6-foot-9 forward from Raleigh, N.C., will not play for the Vols, Tyndall announced.

“We pursued this issue through the proper protocol, and I respect the process,” Tyndall said in a release. “Although we are disappointed that Eric will not be joining our program, we are focused on moving forward.”