TU basketball notebook: Diminished roster
BY BILL HAISTEN World Sports Writer
Thursday, February 07, 2013
2/07/13 at 2:41 AM
This University of Tulsa basketball team has become one of the more injury-affected in program history. Rashad Smith has been inactive for more than two months. After surgery to repair a foot that was injured last week, Zeldric King probably won't play again this season. D'Andre Wright is attempting to play in spite of a persistent left-leg problem. Brandon Swannegan and Pat Swilling Jr. also have contended with significant injury issues.
Add James Woodard to the list. Even before he sustained what appeared to be a twisted ankle during Wednesday's 70-63 loss to UAB, Woodard seemed bothered by stiffness in his back. He certainly wasn't the fluid, athletic Woodard who three times has been voted the Conference USA freshman of the week.
At Memphis last week, Woodard was scoreless while playing only 16 minutes. Against UAB, he scored three points in eight minutes.
"James' body is a little frail right now," TU coach Danny Manning said. "That's probably the best way to put it. You saw him out on the court (on Wednesday). He was moving rather gingerly."
When asked whether the litany of injuries has deflated his teammates, Hurricane senior forward Kauri Black said, "We don't want to make excuses. Obviously, we've got a lot of people down. I've got nicks and bruises. I've got a messed-up hand. But there's no excuse. We could have played a lot better."
Wood update: For a Tulsa team ranked eighth in Conference USA both in overall field goal percentage and 3-point percentage, is it possible that freshman guard Nick Wood might get more meaningful minutes?
During the final minute of the UAB game, the walk-on from Cascia Hall connected on a pair of jump shots. Wood could be used occasionally as a catch-and-shoot guy from 3-point range.
"Nick is someone I feel comfortable with putting in the game," Manning said. "If the situation dictates it, absolutely, it's possible."
Haase vs. Manning: First-year UAB coach Jerod Haase was a Kansas Jayhawk guard in 1993-97. Manning was a Kansas All-American forward in 1984-88. On Wednesday, the former Jayhawks clashed at the Reynolds Center.
"Danny doesn't know this, but I have an autographed picture of Danny in my kids' bedroom," Haase said. "I have all kinds of (KU) memorabilia with Danny's picture all over it. My guess is that in Danny's basement or sports room, he doesn't have a whole lot of me in there.
"Needless to say, I think the world of him as a coach and obviously as a player back in the day. As a person, he's phenomenal."