LSU basketball coach Johnny Jones said Monday that junior point guard Josh Gray was receiving aggressive treatment for an ankle injury he suffered in Saturday night’s 76-67 win against Sam Houston State.
Jones said there were no updates on the exact nature or severity of the ankle injury, which sent Gray to the sidelines just three minutes into the second half.
Gray, a 6-foot-1 junior, appeared to land awkwardly on his right ankle while leading a fast break and didn’t return after being looked at by trainers on the Tigers’ bench.
Gray was seen leaving the basketball practice facility on crutches with a walking boot on his right foot. In his postgame news conference, Jones said the Tigers’ floor leader would be evaluated Monday after a day off for the team on Sunday.
The ankle injury could keep Gray, the national junior college player of the year last season at Odessa (Texas) College, at least out of Thursday night’s game at UAB. After that, LSU has only three more nonconference games before starting Southeastern Conference play Jan. 8 at Missouri.
Gray, who had the game-winning layup in LSU’s 74-73 victory at West Virginia on Dec. 4, is averaging 11.1 points per game, which is fifth on the team, and leads the Tigers with 4.7 assists a game. He’s tied for fourth in the SEC in assists.
If Gray is sidelined, Jones indicated that Tim Quarterman would likely move out of his sixth-man spot and into the starting lineup at the point with freshman Jayln Patterson also a consideration.
A 6-6 sophomore, Quarterman may be the most improved player on the team. He’s averaging 11.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game while playing as a backup at both guard spots and small forward,
Patterson saw extensive time after Gray was lost Saturday night and logged a career-high 24 minutes in the win.
He is averaging 2.2 points and 2.0 rebounds while playing only 13.6 minutes per game although that number will go up if Gray is sidelined.
Follow Sheldon Mickles on Twitter @MicklesAdvocate.