Injuries to Watch
Published on Friday, 1/10/14, at 12:33 p.m. Eastern.
Updated on Friday, 1/10/14 at 7:15 p.m. Eastern.
By Brian Edwards
Ole Miss star guard Marshall Henderson served the first of a two-game suspension in Thursday’s non-covering 65-62 home win over Auburn. Henderson will also have to sit out Saturday at Mississippi St. as well. The suspension is for the Rebels’ first two SEC games dating back to his off-season shenanigans. Reports out of Oxford indicate that he might not have been able to play anyway, because he got injured (neck/back) serious enough for a hospital trip when he got banged up in practice during a rebounding drill earlier this week. Henderson is averaging a team-high 18.8 points per game.
Georgetown center Josh Smith (11.5 PPG) didn’t make the trip to Indiana to face Butler due to academic reasons. Smith will miss his second straight game for the Hoyas.
Michigan St. center Adreian Payne is ‘questionable’ Saturday vs. Minnesota due to a foot injury. Payne averages 16.2 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. Travis Trice (illness), who averages 7.6 PPG, is also a question mark.
Vandy was already short-handed this season with the surprising loss of three likely starters over the offseason (one went pro in Europe, one transferred and one got suspended). Now Kevin Stallings’s team is up against it again. Eric McClellan has been suspended for the rest of the season for a violation of the university’s academic policy. McClellan was averaging 14.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game.
Cincinnati freshman forward Jermaine Lawrence is out indefinitely with a toe injury sustained on Jan. 6. Lawrence averages 4.2 points and 3.3 rebounds per game, but stats don’t tell the whole story. The Bearcats are a team based on defense and rebounding, and Lawrence provides length and athleticism in the paint. Just how much does Cincy depend on defense and rebounding? Enough so that the ‘under’ is 9-1 for the Bearcats this year, 42-12 in their last 54 games.
Creighton guard Grant Gibbs has a dislocated kneecap and will be out for 4-6 weeks. The sixth-year senior was averaging 6.1 points and 4.1 assists per game. Doug McDermott was also injured in Tuesday’s 81-62 win over DePaul. An MRI revealed that McDermott has a minor shoulder sprain and a bruised rotator cuff, but he plans on playing against Xavier this weekend.
Florida captured a 74-58 win over South Carolina on Wednesday night, but the Gators failed to cover the number as 16.5-point home favorites. The bigger story was Scottie Wilbekin injuring his ankle again with 2:50 remaining. The senior point guard shook off an ankle sprain quickly in early December. Wilbekin had a game-high 17 points against the Gamecocks.
In Billy Donovan’s post-game presser, he said Wilbekin was
‘questionable’ this weekend against Arkansas. That remained the case as of early Friday. Also, Casey Prather (sore knee) is a question mark against the Razorbacks. Prather averages a team-best 17.0 PPG. If Prather and Wilbekin can’t go, UF will have a very tough task in ending the Hogs’ 25-game home winning streak. Donovan also said on Wednesday that Damontre Harris is back in school and although he’s suspended for the rest of the year, he can earn his way back onto the team for next season. Finally, there’s nothing new on freshman Chris Walker, the McDonald’s All-American who continues to wait on his eligibility from the NCAA Clearinghouse. UPDATE: Prather is ‘out’ at Arkansas, Wilbekin upgraded to ‘probable’ and senior center Patric Young added to the injury list as ‘questionable’ due to a sore knee.
South Carolina won’t have the services of senior point guard Bruce Ellington this year. Ellington has declared for the NFL Draft and decided to give up hoops.
In a 61-56 loss at UConn on Wednesday night, Harvard played without leading scorer Wesley Saunders (15.7 PPG). The Crimson failed to cover for just the second time this year, and both of those ATS setbacks were crushers for their backers. Harvard, a 4.5-point ‘dog at UConn, had the ball down three in the waning seconds. However, Siyani Chambers, who scored 21 points and drained 5-of-7 from long range, was stripped in the final seconds and then committed a foul with 1.6 ticks left. Obviously, the Huskies hit both free throws for the cover. The other non-cover came in an eight-point loss at Colorado as a six-point ‘dog. Tommy Amaker’s squad led the Buffs (outright) in Boulder for the first 35 minutes before a late three-point barrage put it away. Saunders is ‘doubtful’ Saturday against Dartmouth and could be out for a week or two. Kenyatta Smith remains out indefinitely with a foot injury.
BYU forward Eric Mika didn’t play in Thursday’s non-covering win over Pepperdine due to a hip injury. Mika, who averages 13.9 points and 6.4 rebounds per game, is ‘questionable’ Saturday vs. Loyola-Marymount.
California guard Jabari Bird remains out indefinitely with an ankle injury. Bird went down on Dec. 22 and hasn’t played since. Although he averages 11.3 points and 3.2 rebounds per game, the Bears have fared just fine without him. They are 3-0 both straight up and against the spread without Bird.
Ga. Tech suffered a huge blow when sophomore forward Robert Carter tore his meniscus last week. Carter is out indefinitely and possibly for the rest of the season. He was averaging 10.2 points and 9.4 rebounds per contest.
Rutgers guard Jerome Seagears is ‘doubtful’ Saturday at Cincinnati. Seagears averages 9.1 points, 4.2 assists and 2.8 rebounds per game.
Temple might be down several players for Saturday’s home game vs. Memphis. The Owls are definitely going to be without Daniel Dingle (6.7 PPG), who is done for the season with a torn meniscus. Guard Will Cummings is ‘doubtful’ due to a concussion. Cummings averages 16.5 points, 4.0 assists and 3.4 rebounds per game. Mark Williams (4.7 PPG, 4.3 RPG) is ‘questionable’ because of a sprained ankle. The Tigers are on a quick turnaround (and perhaps a letdown situation) after picking up a monster win Thursday night at Louisville.
Wake Forest power forward Devin Thomas is ‘questionable’ Saturday at Pittsburgh due to a head injury. Thomas averages 10.7 points and 8.9 rebounds per contest.
Washington St. could be without its best player for an indefinite period of time. DaVonte Lacy, who averages 17.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game, is dealing with an appendix issue.
SMU center Yanick Moreira will be out for the next 4-6 weeks with a knee injury. Moreira averages 9.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
Seton Hall won’t be at full force Saturday at Marquette. Center Gene Teague is ‘out’ (concussion) and could miss several games. Teague averages 10.8 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. Fuquan Edwin is ‘questionable’ with a knee injury. Edwin averages 12.2 points per game and has a team-high 38 steals.
La. Tech’s Raheem Appleby is out indefinitely with an ankle injury Appleby averages 16.1 PPG.