DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Duke won't have touted freshman Dariq Whitehead for Saturday's game at Georgia Tech due to a left-leg injury and it's unclear exactly when he'll return.
Coach Jon Scheyer didn't reveal specifics beyond describing it as a “strain.” But Whitehead seems to have avoided what appeared to be a serious injury during Monday's loss at Virginia Tech.
“I think he got a lot of relief once we had done the testing, got the MRI and no structural damage, which is important,” Scheyer said. “So he’s relieved, I know that. We just need to make sure we make smart decisions and take our time with him."
Whitehead was hurt when he jumped to knock a ball away from Hokies forward Justyn Mutts. He grabbed at the back of his lower leg near his ankle as he landed. He ended the night on crutches with ice wrapped around his leg.
The 6-foot-7, 220-pound wing had averaged 8.4 points and 2.3 rebounds in his 16 appearances, starting the past five games. He arrived at Duke as the 247sports’ No. 2-ranked recruit as part of the nation’s top-ranked recruiting class.
Whitehead suffered a broken right foot in late August during a team workout and needed surgery. He missed the first three games of the season and then missed a December loss at Wake Forest due to a non-COVID illness.
But Whitehead had gradually worked into a larger role, scoring in double figures in six of his last eight games.
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