Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hoops - D'Andre Bell out for season

UPDATE: AP Story, RamblinWreck Story,

According to Jeff Goodman at Fox Sports, D'Andre Bell is out for the season with spinal stenosis. What a terrible blow before the season even gets started.

If this turns out to be true, this is a big blow to this year's team and to D'Andre. Bell is a versatile guy who can play multiple positions, anywhere from the PG/SG/SF. He has the best mid-range offensive game on the team and is the best on-ball defender (I'm not sure the #2 defender is even close). He's been a team-first guy, sacrificing his game at times because he could better contribute out of his natural position.

Assuming Bell takes the medical redshirt, he could play again next season. Of course that completely assumes this type of injury can result in a full recovery. That's a big assumption. Another issue might be scholarships. We have a large recruiting class coming in. How many ships will be left when all is said and done?

This will be the 3rd year in a row we've lost a key guy before or early in the season (Ra'Sean Dickey, Lewis Clinch in prior years).The bright spot there is that we could be weak on the wings with Lewis Clinch leaving next season.

Either way you cut it, you just feel terrible for D'Andre, and it certainly seems like Paul Hewitt just can't catch a break. Mo Miller and Iman Shumpert are going to be on the court a lot. Lance Storrs will need to show some significant development this season. Lewis Clinch is going to need to get back to his form of 2 years ago. You'll likely see Zachery Peacock at the 3-spot more often this season. Adjust and move on. Paul Johnson has done it this year, losing all sorts of guys. The other Coach Paul is going to have to find a way to do the same.

There has no other conformation of this story yet.