James Blackmon Jr. out indefinitely with lower leg injury

  • 01/28/2017 3:23 pm in

Indiana’s injury situation just went from bad to worse.

Tom Crean announced on Saturday afternoon that junior James Blackmon Jr. will be out indefinitely after sustaining a lower leg injury in Indiana’s 90-60 loss to Michigan on Thursday at the Crisler Center.

“Unfortunately, James Blackmon Jr. sustained a lower leg injury during our game at Michigan this past Thursday night and will be out for an indefinite period of time,” Crean said in a release. “As much as this affects our basketball team, as with all of the other injuries this year, it hurts us much more for James. He has been playing at a very high level and this is unfortunate.”

Blackmon Jr. is Indiana’s leading scorer at 17.6 points per game and has played in 20 of the team’s 21 games. He missed Indiana’s 85-52 win over Mississippi Valley State on Nov. 27 with soreness in his knee.

The loss of Blackmon Jr. means Indiana will be without three players on Sunday who were expected to be a major part of this season’s team. Both OG Anunoby and Collin Hartman have already been lost for the season with knee injuries.

Blackmon Jr., who scored just four points in the loss to Michigan, was last week’s Big Ten player of the week after scoring 50 points in a pair of Indiana wins.

The Marion product has battled injuries throughout his high school and college career. As a junior in high school, Blackmon Jr. tore his left ACL. Prior to his sophomore season at Indiana, he suffered a torn meniscus in his left knee.

Last season, Blackmon Jr. tore his right ACL in practice prior to Indiana’s Big Ten opener at Rutgers. That injury sidelined him for all of Big Ten and tournament play last season.

Here’s the play where Blackmon Jr. appeared to injure his leg in Thursday’s game. With roughly three minutes to play in the first half, Blackmon Jr. tweaked something in his right leg, which resulted in official Brian Dorsey stopping the game. The stoppage led to the under four minute media timeout, but Blackmon Jr. remained in the game. He played 33 minutes total on Thursday.

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  • Missing Moye

    Is Priller eligible yet? Pretty sure he wouldn’t make it into the game, regardless. I’d bet the same with GG, as it took us to be down 37 points with 2 minutes to go before he could get into the game. The confidence for CTC to put them in the game for meaningful minutes doesn’t seem to be there.

    You are probably right that DG doesn’t get anything close to 30 min though – we’ll see a whole lot of JM and ZM with some McFly. Davis will still get like 17 minutes and we’ll all still be scratching our heads. Newkirk, though, will get about 37 minutes if he doesn’t get into foul trouble, which is the thing that bothers me the most. He’s played better recently, but the ceiling is just pretty limited on how much he can impact the game, imo. I want DG taking his minutes, not JBJs.

  • vicbert caladipo

    CTC said TP was eligible to play against UM. Why he didn’t play, I have no clue. Sounds like we’re on the same page, but CTC will do as he always does and distribute the minutes. I really would like to see DD and TB together. We seemed to get knocked around by UM and to some extent MSU too. DG and CJ need to get stronger for either to give us consistency. DD is already strong. He seriously needs to play 25 minutes plus. Newkirk is a huge liability with his outside shot. I’d give a few of his mins to GG who can shoot but not play as good as D.

  • Bk39

    Not arguing he should get more min. than he had a couple games back which was 32 min. in a defeat of Mich. St. With JBJ out it certainly becomes more important to have players on the floor that can contribute points . My start lineup post JBJ injury would be RJ, DJ, JM, TB, DD. I believe that is the best balenced lineup. ZM and JN/CJ first off bench.

  • Fifer39

    Sounds like good news according to his old man. Maybe back in a few games.

  • INUnivHoosier2

    Hope so. We need him, and it would be terrible for him on a personal level if he had to sit out very long. He’s had enough of that.

  • Fifer39

    Agreed. So much so that, as much as we need him, I’d hate him to come back too early and risk more damage.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    Fifer, what did his Dad say? I missed it. Thanks!

  • Fifer39

    Main thing was he had an MRI and it came back negative. Would take a bit of time to let the bruising heal but should be ready to go in a couple of games.

    I’m not taking that as the definitive medical assessment, but it sounds positive news.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    I really appreciate your response to this. That is good news compared to months. Let’s hope for a fast recovery for JBJ. Everyone knows how much we need him.

  • My thought exactly. And, I’m sure he’ll be reluctant to really push things for awhile. Getting back his confidence with such a scare could take some time.

  • Fifer39

    Very true. I’ve got a lot of respect for him battling through the UM blowout hurt, knowing how much he’s got on the line.

  • vicbert caladipo

    He’s a tough kid gutting that game out and then taking the wrath from fans here and elsewhere. My guess is unless CTC holds him back he’d probably play tonight. I think in his mind he still has something to prove and a tough kid will prove it.

  • vicbert caladipo

    Not saying he could play tonight…just saying if he had his way he would. Kid has stones

  • Fifer39

    Yep. If we grind out a win 60-54 tonight, I’m going to have to give the other ‘fans’ on here a miss for a couple of days.

  • Eljay

    …unless your wife—or IUBB players (or any competent adult) consents to disclosure of your medical information.

    That said, I’m not saying that the players should consent to CTC disclosing their medical information, but if they wished to do so, they could.

  • Todd Jones

    Time will tell

  • And the B1G continues to bloody itself. This time, it’s Nebraska knocking off Purdue.

  • Todd Jones

    Clearly the offense is worse without James, but it’s too early to say anything definitive about the defense. James has improved on D but it’s no secret O is his calling card. I think Devonte Green has the potential to be a better defender if he isn’t already. So I’m going to wait and see on that end. It’s hard to argue we could be any worse on D so far through the conference season. I’m not sure if it’s coaching or personnel.

  • Guyton25

    Everything I said is happening in this game! lol. We keep doubling for no reason, miscommunicating, Newkirk is shooting more 3s, our guards are traveling and letting the ball hit them in the face, etc. Run a zone and get the ball into TB’s hands every time down. Either he’ll score or he’ll kick it out. As long as our PG isn’t holding the ball up top calling a play that must mean run to the corners and wait until the buzzer sounds….

  • Austin Alexander

    Yep, I watched that, lots of heart shown by Nebraska…that’s Maryland at home, IU at home, and now Purdue. If anyone else is watching this game right now…wow…we almost have as many turn overs as points.

  • mharv2631

    Can someone please explain to me why Newkirk is on the floor. Really! Give someone else a chance. The announcer on TV said CTC said “we cannot change who we are” and my response is you better change who you are because right now who you are is BAD!

  • Not looking good. And CTC is obviously as frustrated as we fans are about players helping and leaving perimeter shooters wide open. I know people think the poor defense is all (or most) on CTC, but I see players continuing to make mistakes that CTC seem to be telling them not to make.

  • Austin Alexander

    I think these kids are losing hope. Their defensive gumption is non-existent…we’re luck we’re not down 40.

  • mharv2631

    Hey, where is that Mcintosh kid from? Oh wait nevermind.

  • Offense, defense, turnovers, free throws — just generally a terrible mess.

  • Ben thorne

    Free throws! I think we missed the front end of the 1 and 1 five times in the first half

  • Fifer39

    Indeed it will. Initial signs are encouraging though, only giving up 1.08ppp yesterday. Drop that by a further 0.2 or so and 55 pts will just about be enough for a win.

  • PreKnight

    Did you see him in the NW game? If not for his play, we may have scored less than 50 points.

  • Jeez I sure hope so. My belief in this team has been severely shaken in this past week, and in ways I had never expected possible at the start of the season. I’m moving out of complete shock and into mourning now. I’m still sticking with them, win or lose, but something needs to happen. “miracle” is my new personal watchword.