Injuries to Watch

Published on Thursday, 12/12/13, at 6:51 p.m. Eastern.

By Brian Edwards

The status of North Carolina’s P.J. Hairston and Leslie McDonald remains uncertain. Both remain suspended indefinitely and the only certainty is that neither will play Saturday vs. Kentucky.

Oregon’s Ben Carter and Dominic Artis are expected to make their season debuts Tuesday vs. UC-Irvine. Both have been suspended so far while the Ducks have run out to an 8-0 straight-up record and a 7-0 against-the-spread mark. The ‘over’ is also 6-0 for Oregon. Both will miss their ninth and final game Saturday vs. Illinois.

Florida stormed out to a double-digit lead by forcing 16 first-half turnovers in Tuesday’s home win over Kansas. The Gators hooked up their backers in the 67-61 win as three-point favorites in a game that wasn’t near as close as the final score indicated. A late barrage of 3-pointers by KU’s Andrew Wiggins and abysmal free-throw shooting by UF made the final seem close. UF was playing for the first time all season with its full compliment of players. Scottie Wilbekin and Kasey Hill both returned from sprained ankles a little sooner than anticipated. Wilbekin was the best player on the court against the Jayhawks, finishing with 18 points, six assists and four steals. The Gators remain hopeful that even more help could be on the way. Chris Walker, a McDonald’s All-American, has completed his course requirement and should find out if UF will admit him in the next few days. From there, the athletic shot-blocking center will have just one last hurdle, the NCAA Clearinghouse, to get past before taking the court for the orange and blue. Also, Damontre Harris remains suspended indefinitely, but there’s a chance he could earn back a spot on the roster. Finally, UF has decided to redshirt Rutgers transfer Eli Carter, who was granted immediate eligibility but still wasn’t 100 percent after suffering a leg injury late last season.

Fresno St. senior guard Tyler Johnson remains out with a foot injury. Johnson is expected to miss a fifth consecutive game Saturday at California. He was averaging 14.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. Without Johnson, the Bulldogs have split four games, going 1-3 against the spread. Gamblers should check his status ahead of a Dec. 21 game at Florida.

Belmont might be without two of its best players Saturday at South Dakota St. Craig Bradshaw and Reece Chamberlain are both question marks. Bradshaw suffered a head injury in a home loss to VCU on Dec. 1. He is averaging 11.4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. Chamberlain, who averages 10.9 points, 4.9 assists and 3.9 rebounds per contest, hasn’t played since Nov. 24 when he injured his foot. The Bruins are 8-2 with a win at North Carolina on their resume.

Colorado freshman forward Wesley Gordon did not play in Saturday’s 75-72 win over Kansas and is questionable Friday vs. Elon. Gordon, who has an undisclosed injury, is averaging 7.6 points and 6.3 boards per game.

Davidson star forward De’Mon Brooks missed his fifth straight game Wednesday in a loss to Niagara. Brooks has a groin injury and is questionable for Sunday’s home game vs. Drexel. Brooks averages 16.8 points and 6.4 rebounds per game.

Drexel guard Damion Lee is out for the season with a torn ACL. This is a huge loss for the Dragons, who started the season with six straight spread covers before failing to cover in their last two games. Lee was averaging 13.0 PPG.

Harvard guard Brandyn Curry and forward Kenyatta Smith remain out indefinitely with foot injuries. Curry has played in two games this season, averaging 9.5 points and 4.5 assists per game. Smith has yet to play after averaging 5.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per contest in 2012-2013.

Maryland guard Seth Allen broke his foot at practice on Oct. 29. The Terrapins are hoping he can return in the next 2-3 weeks. Allen averaged 7.8 points and 2.3 assists per game last season and was expected to be a starter.

Michigan St. guard Gary Harris is a question mark for Saturday’s home game vs. Oakland. Harris averages a team-high 17.6 PPG for the Spartans. Adreian Payne is also nursing a foot injury but is expected to start against the Grizzlies.

Providence guard Kris Dunn is out for the season with a shoulder injury. Dunn was averaging 3.8 points, 5.0 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game for the Friars.

Vandy came into the season with some personnel issues after losing three key players unexpectedly. One was suspended, one turned pro overseas and another decided to transfer. And now the Commodores will be without Josh Henderson for an indefinite period of time. Henderson injured his knee in last Thursday’s home win over Marshall. He was averaging 6.6 points and 4.3 rebounds per game.

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