Every year it seems a key University of Louisville basketball player goes down in weeks leading up to the season.

Already this year, two months until basketball practice officially begins, U of L is dealing with injuries. Nothing new. More like the norm. Crossing one’s fingers as the team heads for the Bahamas.

Rick Pitino has been all over the place on the effects of Jared Swopshire’s groin injury, indicating at one point that it was doubtful he would return.  A few weeks ago, Pitino said he expects Swopshire to be ready in October. But last week, he revealed that Swopshire was off to a clinic in Cleveland, dealing with related issues. Maybe just scar tissue from an operation, hopefully nothing more.

But we are reminded of Taquan Dean’s experience with a similar injury and all the pain he enduring during his senior season. More bothersome, Pitino has consistently said Swopshire will return before Rakeem Buckles does.

Buckles, of course, is still dealing with an ACL injury, incurred last season a few weeks after returning from a broken finger the day before the UK game. If Swopshire’s progress is uncertain, then we are left to wonder about Buckles’ long-term prognosis as well.

Then there’s the shoulder injury plaguing the highly touted Wayne Blackshear and the concussion Zach Price experienced during a freak accident at Billy Minardi Hall, limiting their playing time on the practice court and in the Bahamas.

Stay tuned.

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By Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.