By Paul M. Banks
Injuries are just part of sports; the natural order of things, the way it is. But during the 2009-2010 college basketball season, the injury bug has seemed to infested the Big Ten a little more than usual. In fact, you could make a pretty good starting five out or Big Ten stars that have missed a couple months or will miss a couple months this season.
Kevin Coble F Northwestern- Coble will take a red-shirt season this year, as he recovers from foot surgery. Last year he led the Wildcats in both scoring and rebounding in 2008-09 for the third consecutive season, averaging 15.5 points and 4.8 boards per contest. He was named a second-team All-Big Ten selection and helped Northwestern to a National Invitation Tournament appearance.
For more on Coble’s injury click here
Jon Leuer F Wisconsin- No specific timetable for his return has been determined, but an injury like this typically takes 4-8 weeks depending on how well Leuer heals from surgery he is expected to undergo on Tuesday. That means he should likely be sidelined until late February/early March at the earliest, possibly the entire season.
In other words, this is a huge blow to the Sconnies’ NCAA hopes and/or tournament seeding. Leuer has scored 19 or more on 6 occasions this season, and has put double figure rebounds in four games. The 6-10, 225 forward from Long Lake, MN is the Badgers second leading scorer and leading rebounder, averaging 15.4 ppg, and 6.2 rpg.
For more on Leuer, and his injury click here
Evan Turner G/F Ohio State– Turner is back now and seems to be himself again. But at the time he got hurt, it looked MUCH worse than it ended up being. To quote TSB college basketball expert David K. “The fall looked as painful as what the injury ended up being; fractures of the second and third lumbar vertebra of his spine. Initial reports say Turner will miss at least eight weeks which has to be a relief considering how hard and awkward he fell on his neck.”
Maurice Creek G Indiana- In a late December victory over Bryant, Creek, the nation’s top freshman scorer at 17.6 points per game, was hurt when trying to put in a layup with 15:26 left and the Hoosiers holding a 57-23 lead. After being fouled, he landed awkwardly on his leg and crumbled to the ground and was lost for the season. This was a CATASTROPHIC blow to the Hoosiers steps toward re-building their program this season. Obviously better things are ahead in 2010-11.
Lewis Jackson G Purdue- The sophomore point guard is probably the weakest link on this team, but he does a lot of things that go well beyond the box score. Jackson hasn’t played this season as he recovers from foot surgery. He averaged 5.9 points and 3.3 assists a game last season.
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