After losing Logan Aronhalt (transferred to Maryland) and the high-scoring Gerardo Suero (21.6 ppg) from last season’s 19-win team, the Albany Great Danes had room in their perimeter rotation for the seldom-used Tanner Gibson to earn some playing time.
But that wasn’t in the cards for Gibson this season, as a stress fracture in his left foot that’s been an issue since the spring prohibited him from taking part in any basketball activities.
Thursday head coach Will Brown announced the decision to shut Gibson down for the remainder of the 2012-13 campaign, and what makes it worse is the fact that Brown doesn’t even know if Gibson will be able to play again.
“I am sure he is upset by this,” said Brown, who added he did not have to announce Gibson as a medical redshirt right now. “You just don’t know if he will ever heal or will ever be able to play again. It just stinks for the kid because he is a great kid and a hard worker.”
Gibson played in 24 of Albany’s 34 games last season, averaging 5.1 minutes and 0.8 points per game. The foot, which he originally injured in high school, began to give him issues after the season and the various treatment strategies haven’t solved the problem.
With guards Mike Black and Jacob Iati leading the way the Great Danes have been one of the best teams in America East, as they currently have a 13-4 record (2-1 America East) and are capable of being a contender for the league’s NCAA tournament bid.
But regardless of how small Gibson’s role could have been with this group it would have been nice for him to at the very least be healthy enough for the ride. Gibson will be on the bench for both home and away games and while he may be able to gain some solace from being with his teammates it simply isn’t the same.
Now it’s not only a matter of the foot injury ruling him out this season but also the possibility of not being able to play again, and that’s a terrible prospect to have to deal with.
Photo credit: University at Albany Athletics
Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
National Semifinals– Saturday, April 1
6:09 p.m. EST, CBS, Glendale
No. 7 South Carolina vs. No. 1 Gonzaga (Jim Nantz, Grant Hill, Bill Raftery, Tracy Wolfson)
Approximately 40 minutes after conclusion of first game, CBS, Glendale
No. 1 North Carolina vs. No. 3 Oregon (Jim Nantz, Grant Hill, Bill Raftery, Tracy Wolfson)
North Carolina and Kentucky ended in legendary fashion on Sunday.
After freshman Malik Monk buried a heavily-contested three-pointer to tie the game at 73-all for Kentucky with under 10 seconds left the Tar Heels didn’t use a timeout as Theo Pinson found forward Luke Maye for the game-winning jumper.
These 10 seconds will go down as one of the greatest finishes in NCAA Tournament history.
North Carolina advanced to the Final Four for the second consecutive season and 20th time overall as the No. 1 seed Tar Heels outlasted No. 2 seed Kentucky, 75-73, during Sunday’s South Regional final in Memphis.
Reserve forward Luke Maye knocked in the game-winning jumper for the Tar Heels with 0.3 seconds left to break a 73-all tie after Kentucky’s Malik Monk tied the game with a three-pointer on the previous possession.
The Tar Heels (31-7) overcame an ankle issue from junior point guard Joel Berry as North Carolina was led by Justin Jackson’s 19 points.
Maye also stepped up with a big game for North Carolina as he continued his strong March with 17 points. Berry added 11 points, as he went to the locker room during the first half to get his ankle looked at before returning to play later in the half.
Kentucky (32-6) won the regular-season matchup of these teams, 103-100, in Las Vegas in December as their freshmen guards struggled to perform on Sunday. After De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk combined for 71 points in that previous win over the Tar Heels, the two freshmen studs couldn’t get going.
Both of them dealt with first-half foul trouble as Fox finished with 13 points while Monk was held to 12 points. Also battling foul trouble in the first half, freshman Bam Adebayo added 13 points for the Wildcats.
With Fox and Monk struggling to generate consistent offense, the Wildcats were able to stay in the game thanks to great performances from reserves like Isaac Humphries (career-high 12 points) and senior Dominique Hawkins (10 points.
North Carolina advances to face No. 3 seed Oregon in next weekend’s Final Four.
South Carolina earned its first trip to the Final Four with its win over SEC-rival Florida on Sunday.
The Gamecocks made sure to celebrate properly when head coach Frank Martin hit the locker room after the game by dousing him in water before Martin gave another speech.
Darius Rucker, the former front man of Hootie and the Blowfish and a current star in the country music world, is a lifelong South Carolina Gamecocks fan.
This isn’t really a secret.
Hell, on Friday night at a concert he was playing, Rucker set up TVs so that he would be able to watch South Carolina take on Baylor:
You probably didn’t realize just how big of a fan he actually is until you saw him, sitting second row at the regional final in New York City on Sunday afternoon, tearing up as the Gamecocks advanced to the Final Four:
Let ’em cry, Darius, if the tears fall down like rain.