11 Injuries to Monitor Before Filling Out Your Bracket – 2022 March Madness

BY MATTY D.

Before you find that printable bracket to fill out, find out the updated injury statuses below for these important NCAA Men’s Basketball players. Find the teams impacted in alphabetical order.

The website covers.com is cited in this article. We are also following some key beat reporters.

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Arizona Guard Kerr Kriisa Ankle Injury Update

Kerr Kriisa was in street clothes to watch Arizona beat UCLA in the Pac-12 Championship after suffering an ankle injury late this season. Ankle injuries are among the most common injuries in basketball, but have varying grades of severity.

By the looks of it, Kerr Kriisa’s severity of a sprain is high and he won’t play this week…

Baylor Guards LJ Cryer and Kendall Brown listed with leg injuries

Kendall Brown played in Baylor’s last game, a loss to TCU, while LJ Cryer did not.

LJ Cryer has been listed as day-to-day for nearly two months, but has only played one game in the past several weeks. Cryer was Baylors leading scorer.

Connecticut Guard Jordan Hawkins Suffers a Concussion mid-March

Freshman guard Jordan Hawkins has provided quality scoring punch and range off the bench for the Huskies, but he was unavailable for their last game in a loss against Villanova.

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Georgia State Guard Nelson Phillips Listed Day-to-Day with Undisclosed Injury

Nelson Phillips averages 7.7 points per game and plays about 20 minutes per game.

Houston Veteran Fabian White Jr. Was Questionable with a Back Injury

In a season where the Cougars have seen crippling injuries, its mainstay veteran forward Fabrian White Jr. is battling a new one. However, White Jr. played the most minutes for his Cougars team in an AAC Championship game. Because it’s a back injury, it should be monitored, but for now it looks all good.

Illinois Guard Jacob Grandison Nursing a Shoulder Injury

The graduate transfer can get hot from deep, so this is a secret weapon that the Illini might have to get accustomed to playing without.

A beat reporter covering the Illini tweeted this on Monday:

Illinois beat reporters will be tracking this story all week.

Memphis Forward Jalen Duran Injures Hand in AAC Semifinal

Jalen Duran looked fine in the AAC Championship game after injuring his hand in the semifinal game. There was one fast break in particular where he sprinted and finished with a forceful dunk, showing no outward signs of pain. Head coach Penny Hardaway updated reporters about Duran’s injury after the semis, saying that it was an unknown diagnosis.

Michigan State Point Guard Tyson Walker Dealing with Ankle Injury

Counter to tradition, Michigan State has actually struggled to find consistent play at point guard since Cassius Winston’s graduation. If the Spartans don’t have Walker in the lineup, that is a serious consideration. He is not only a stable orchestrator of the offense, but he showed his ability to score in bunches this season as well.

Detroit Free Press beat writer Chris Solari reported on Monday that head coach Tom Izzo is making contingency plans to play without Walker in the lineup. Here’s what he said about backup (and sometimes starting) point guard, A.J. Hoggard.

Ohio State Buckeyes Monitoring Zed Key’s Ankle Injury

EJ Liddell is one of the nation’s best post players, but he needs help. Key is a key to the Buckeye’s having enough beef down low.

Ohio State basketball reporters are monitoring this situation closely.

San Franscisco Forward Yauhen Massalski Sidelined with Knee Injury

Yauhen Massalski was unavailable for the Dons semifinal matchup against Gonzaga in the WCC tournament, and it showed how San Francisco was minus some size against the talented Gonzaga front-line.

Photo courtesy: usfdons.com
According to CBS Sports College Basketball insider Jon Rothstein, Massalski will play.

Bonus #12: Seton Hall Guard Bryce Aiken Largely Unavailable Late This Season

Point guard Bryce Aiken has been out for weeks, so this would be a huge bonus if he re-emerges.

Honorable Mention: Some teams are still recovering from the sting felt after losing a key player late in the season. Baylor and Creighton would certainly qualify as they’ve lost Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua and Ryan Nembhard respectively.

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3 New Rotation Wrinkles to Watch in Big 10 Basketball

BY MATT DE SARLE

Big 10 Coaches Tweak Rosters As Season Enters Home Stretch

Anyone watching college basketball this season with an unbiased view will admit that the Big 10 is the best conference in basketball. So when subtle changes happen to some of the best team’s rosters, those are developments worth watching. Here are some late season roster tinkering that could become a factor in March Madness.

Rutgers Swingman Jacob Young Coming Off The Bench

If you listen to Twitter (don’t), Rutgers fans will tell you that Jacob Young is trash. Well, that’s not true. The Euro-stepping swingman from Houston has a 20 point game in his grasp each time he steps on the floor. His defense has been questioned. And this mid-season, Rutgers coach Steve Pickel relegated Young to the bench. The Scarlet Knights responded by hitting a 4 game winning streak as January rolled into February. Young might not be a starter, but he pairs well with Ron Harper Jr. as a closer.

Michigan Coach Tom Izzo Searching for Starting Point Guard

Tom Izzo certainly doesn’t need my sympathy. He’s a championship coach and definitely not reading this blog article. However, I feel bad from any coach who loses Cassius Winston in one COVID-ravaged season and has to enter a COVID-complicated following season with few choices at point guard. Rocket Watts was auditioned at point guard early in the season, but it was determined (not surprisingly) that he is a shooting guard. Izzo then turned to freshman A.J. Hoggard as the head man. Sparty also has 6 foot junior Foster Loyer on the roster. Hoggard has slipped from the leading minutes-getter at point guard and the leading assists man at Michigan State is forward elder statesman forward Joshua Langford. As crazy as this all sounds, if Michigan State even makes the tournament, you’d have to feel shaky taking them against any team that has an established star point guard.

Does the Big 10’s Best Point Guard Come Off The Bench?

CJ Walker went out early this season with a wrist injury. The Buckeyes responded well with play from underclassmen, including the insertion of a Cleveland star who re-classified to leave high school early (Meechie Johnson Jr.). The Buckeyes jumped into the top half of the AP Top 25. Then, when Walker was recovered from his injury, coach Chris Holtmann had him come off the bench. And so can you believe that a player who averaged 3.4 assists in 2019-2020 is still coming off the bench for a top 10 team? This speaks not only to CJ Walker’s willingness to win but Ohio State’s incredible depth.