UCLA junior David Wear could return to practice as early as Monday after spraining his right ankle on Sunday.
X-rays on his ankle were negative, leading a team spokesman to remain “hopeful Wear will be ready by [Monday],” according to the Associated Press.
Wear returns to the Bruins for the 2012-13 season after averaging 10.2 points and 6.3 rebounds per game last season as a sophomore. His best game of the season came in a February win over USC when he scored 16 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
Once Wear’s injury situation is cleared up, it will return the focus to another pressing issue within the program: the eligibility of freshmen Shabazz Muhammad and Kyle Anderson.
Both are still waiting for initial eligibility rulings from the NCAA and have entered the 40-day window that allows them to practice with the team.
If one or both of those star freshman are ruled ineligible, it would likely hurt the Bruins’ high expectations for the season.
Muhammad, the No. 1 overall player in the Class of 2012, is an elite scorer and considered to be a one-and-done player for the Bruins, while Anderson is a high-level distributor who can also create his own shot.
UCLA opens its season on Nov. 9 against Indiana State.