Gary Johnson

Former Texas Longhorn Gary Johnson to make recovery after skull fracture

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Former Texas standout Gary Johnson is expected to make a full recovery after suffering a skull fracture and being put into a medically induced coma following an injury in a game with his professional team in Israel, the Associated Press is reporting.

According to Israel Basketball Association spokesman Hagai Segal, Johnson was awake and communicative and will undergo plastic surgery, but will recover.

Johnson reportedly caught an elbow from Johndre Jefferson, a former South Carolina and current Elitzur Ramla forward. Jefferson recounted the incident to the AP:

“Gary made a step-through move, and when he was going up I was close enough to block the shot and I blocked it on the backboard,” Jefferson said. “I don’t know how it happened, but when I was coming down my elbow caught him in the forehead.

“When we both came down I was standing over his feet trying to tap him on his side to ask him if he was OK. He was holding his head and kind of rolling around.”

Johnson played at Texas from 2007-11 and reached the NCAA tournament four times. During his freshman season, the Longhorns reached the Elite Eight. He averaged 11.5 points and 6.8 rebounds per game as a senior.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

Illinois’ injury woes continue as starting center needs knee surgery

George Niang,Abdel Nader,Mike Thorne, Jr.
AP Photo/Mark Wallheiser
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Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.

Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.

Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.

The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.

John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.

NEW PODCAST: Recapping Feast Week

Kris Dunn
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.

For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.

Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.

As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.