Monday, December 5, 2011

Hoops Housekeeping: Jared Sullinger, Tray Woodall and a pair of suspensions

Jared Sullinger "put the team on his back, doe", leading the Buckeyes to a 22 point win over Duke with a team-high 21 points and eight boards.

It may have been to much, however, as Sullinger's back gave out. The big fella sat out OSU's 64-35 win over UT-Pan American with back problems. Apparently, he's aggravated a disc, an injury that anyone with back problems knows is painful and immobilizing.

"The muscle tightens around that area," head coach Thad Matta said of the disc, "and things just have to calm down, and we'll take a look at him Monday or Tuesday and just assess it. But he's feeling better every day and the muscle is relaxing more every day, so that's a great sign for us.

"I think once we get past this, it'll be over. I hope so. The big thing is, with therapy and stretching, you can really strengthen that area and make it a non-issue."

Ohio State plays their first true road test of the season on Saturday, when the Buckeyes travel to Lawrence, KS, to take on the Jayhawks in Phog Allen Fieldhouse. With Thomas Robinson playing like the all-american we all expected in the preseason, Ohio State is going to want their own all-american in the middle. And so will we; that matchup loses quite a bit of its intrigue if Sully isn't going blow-for-blow with T-Rob.

Tray Woodall's abs need work: Pitt will be without their second-leading scorer and best assist-man Tray Woodall for about a month as he deals with groin and abdominal injuries.

In his place on Saturday, Jamie Dixon started Cameron Wright and used John Johnson off the bench. Wright went scoreless with two assists in 25 minutes, while Johnson had eight points and three assists in 18 minutes off the bench. Johnson looks like he may end up being the man in the future.

"John Johnson was terrific," Dixon said. "He just keeps getting better and better. He has a real focus, a real determination that really impresses me. He's been doing a lot of learning, a lot of things he's never done before. He's going to be a very good player."

Sidiki Johnson transferring from Arizona: This was a long time coming.

Part of a highly touted freshmen class, Johnson already wasn't happy about his playing time, dealing with one suspension this season and playing in just three games. With Grant Jerrett, Kaleb Tarczewski and Brandon Ashley coming in next year, Johnson wasn't going to be getting any more playing time next season.

"Sidiki Johnson is someone from a physical perspective -- rebounding, giving us quality minutes, developing as our season grows -- who we were really counting on to complement the big guys that we already have," Miller said. "Him not being with us is not a positive."

A couple of suspensions: Cal was without Richard Solomon when they lost at San Diego State on Saturday afternoon. The Bear's leading rebounder was suspended for violating team rules.

"It's not the reason we lost," Bears guard Justin Cobbs said. "Richard's an important part of our team, but still, we should have done what we needed to win."

Cal coach Mike Montgomery didn't specify to cause of the suspension.

"We expect our student-athletes to adhere to a high standard of behavior," Montgomery said. "In this particular instance, that was not the case."

Marquette starting point guard Junior Cadougan was suspended for the Golden Eagles' date with Wisconsin on Saturday. Buzz Williams didn't specify what the violation of team rules was, but the suspension will only be for the one game.

"He made a mistake yesterday, and my decision was to suspend him from this game," Williams said. "That's the end of it. He made a mistake that was not intelligent in nature. It did not hurt anyone, but it was not how his mom raised him."

Was Dewayne Dedmon on Heroes?: Dedmon was diagnosed with a stress fracture in his foot, and it was supposed to keep him out of the lineup for as much as six week.

But on Saturday, Dedmon not only played as USC took on Minnesota, he played 26 minutes and started. Huh?

"He didn't look like he was in pain in any way," USC coach Kevin O'Neill said.

"I felt all right. I'm not 100% all the way," Dedmon added.

Vanderbilt takes another hit in the middle: With Festus Ezeli already out of the lineup with a knee injury, Kevin Stallings' front court just got thinner.

Freshman center Josh Henderson, a reserve that was averaging 3.0 ppg and 3.0 rpg, has a stress fracture in his foot. He'll be out for 8-12 weeks.

Maurice Sutton dislocates his thumb: He did it last week, and he will be out up to a month.

"Our staff and team is disappointed for Mo," stated Villanova head coach Jay Wright. "He's been making a contribution to our team on a daily basis and we'll miss his presence, especially defensively. But the positive in this is that Mo can still maintain his conditioning while the thumb heals and we look forward to getting him back out there, possibly in time to start the Big East season."

No comments: