Wednesday night, at 2:47 a.m. ET, Will Yeguete, a 6-foot-7 forward for the Florida Gators, sent out the following cryptic tweet:
On Thursday afternoon, we found out what Yeguete was referring to: he’s going to miss the rest of the regular season.
Yeguete had been dealing with tendonitis in his knee all season long, but last month, in a game against LSU, he aggravated that injury and was forced into reduced practice time and extra rehab. Early in the first half of Tuesday’s loss to Arkansas, Yeguette felt a pop in his knee. He missed the rest of the game, and was eventually diagnosed with loose pieces of cartilage floating in his knee:
Yeguete will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Friday morning and be sidelined from four to six weeks. Assuming his rehab goes well, the timetable for Yeguete’s return could have him back on the court as the Gators prepare for the Southeastern Conference and NCAA tournaments.
This is the second straight season where an injury has cost Yeguete the stretch run. Last year, he broke a foot in February and missed Florida’s run to the Elite 8.
This is a huge blow to the Gators. Not only is Yeguete their second-leading rebounder and source of energy, he’s their best defender and the versatile piece that allows them to be effective in a press.
The Gators have been beat up all season long, from Scottie Wilbekin’s thumb to Erik Murphy’s rib to Casey Prather’s ankle, but the issue here is that Donovan now has no front court depth. Prather, a 6-foot-6 wing, may be forced into a power forward role with Yeguete gone.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.
When it comes to discussing some of the game of basketball’s best players, specifically those who went directly from high school to the NBA, a question that’s often asked is where said player would have attended college if forced (by rule) to do so. Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James are among those who have been discussed in this manner, and in the case of LeBron he’s got connections to two programs within his home state of Ohio.
LeBron’s connected with the Ohio State program, which is outfitted by the Nike’s LeBron signature line, but there’s another program with an even closer connection. That would be Akron, which is led by head coach Keith Dambrot, and all he did was serve as LeBron’s high school coach at St. Vincent/St. Mary’s HS in Akron during the player’s freshman and sophomore years at the school. Also on those teams were two future Akron Zips in guard Dru Joyce and forward Romeo Travis.
Thursday the school announced that it would be honoring James, Joyce and Travis with bobble head dolls to be given out before Akron’s home games against Buffalo (February 16; Joyce’s bobble head), Bowling Green (February 26; Travis) and Ohio (March 1; James).
All three bobble head dolls are wearing Akron uniforms, which in the case of LeBron allows fans to think back and imagine what could have been. Season ticket holders guaranteed one bobble head per account (on each of the three giveaway days), with the first 750 fans in attendance to receive one as well.
The gang is back together again for another episode of the NBCSports.com College Basketball Talk Podcast, with Rob Dauster hosting and Raphielle Johnson and Scott Phillips joining him. Today’s episode touched on big wins picked up Thursday night by California and Indiana, discussing the performances of those teams and also touching on their prospects down the line.
Also discussed were the recent performances of Iowa State, Providence and Texas A&M (which are you more worried about?), and some of the top games on this weekend’s schedule headlined by Kansas visiting Oklahoma. And if you’re a fan of seafood, you may take umbrage with some of Rob’s comments at the beginning of the podcast.
As always, you can subscribe to the podcast on either iTunes or Stitcher, and there’s also a link to listen to this podcast below. Thanks for listening.