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Injured Watford likely to miss Hoosier Hysteria

Junior forward using walking boot

Friday, October 14, 2011 - 2:44 am

BLOOMINGTON -- What else can go wrong for Indiana as it aims for Saturday night's Hoosier Hysteria?

Forward Christian Watford's foot injury follows guard Maurice Creek's season-ending torn Achilles tendon and coach Tom Crean's secondary NCAA violation in recent days.

Watford's injury, and the fact he's using a walking boot, surfaced Thursday afternoon from a report by Peegs.com's Jeff Rabjohns. Watford is expected to sit out today's first official basketball practice as well Hoosier Hysteria.

IU has not released any details, but Watford is expected back before the start of the season. The Hoosiers open Nov. 11 against Stony Brook.

The 6-9 junior led IU in scoring (16.0 points) and rebounding (5.4) last season. He's projected to be one of the Big Ten's top players, and has aspirations of averaging a double-double. Crean has been pushing him to improve his rebounding.

The addition of freshman forward Cody Zeller likely means Watford will play mostly small forward, which will better enable him to utilize his perimeter game as well as his ability to drive inside.

“I feel I'll do all right there,” he said. “It's going to be a challenge. I'm up for it. There aren't any small 3s (small forwards) in the Big Ten, anyway. They're all 6-7 or 6-8. I'll be all right.

“I'll use what I have more than anything. I'll be long. Use my length. Do multiple things with my wingspan. That's my main focus.”

Hoosier Hysteria also will feature multiple recruits, topped by 2012 standout Gary Harris of Hamilton Southeastern. The event was originally set for tonight, but was moved to Saturday to accommodate Harris's football schedule. He's a receiver for Hamilton Southeastern and plays tonight.

Also, former Hoosiers and current NBA players D.J. White and Eric Gordon will attend and sign autographs. The men's team is set to appear at 8 p.m.