Gorgui Dieng, Louisville: Dieng has been out of the lineup since breaking the scaphoid bone in his left wrist in a win over Missouri in the Battle 4 Atlantis last month. He was expected to be out 4 to 6 weeks, but Dieng already has the cast removed and has been participating in individual workouts. He warmed up with the team prior to Saturday's game at Memphis, and while he's been ruled out of Wednesday's matchup with Florida International, Dieng may make his return on Dec. 22 against Western Kentucky "if he's in shape," head coach Rick Pitino said. "That's the biggest thing, not the wrist, if he's in shape to play." The goal? To get him back on the court before Dec. 29's showdown with in-state rival Kentucky.
Dieng isn't the only Cardinal that's beat up right now. Big man Stephan Van Treese played just nine minutes against the Tigers as he battles a bruised knee while Russ Smith sprained his ankle late in the first half of that game. He returned in the second half, however, finishing 19 points.
Mike Moser, UNLV: Just days after he was held out of his homecoming game at Portland, Moser lasted about five minutes against Cal before he suffered a gruesome elbow dislocation. He dove for a loose ball at the same time as Cal point guard Brandon Smith, who landed on his right arm and sent Moser to the court in some serious pain. Watching the video would lead you to believe Moser's season was over and his career in jeopardy, but he lucked out; nothing in the elbow was broken, and he could return as soon as Jan. 9, right at the start of Mountain West league play. The Rebels play at New Mexico in their conference opener.
Carl Hall, Wichita State: On Monday afternoon, Shocker head coach Gregg Marshall announced that Hall, who led the team in scoring and rebounding, will have surgery Tuesday on his broken right thumb which was injured during practice. He will miss about a month of action. This is a huge blow to the Shockers, who are coming off of a loss at Tennessee and who begin Missouri Valley Conference play on Dec. 30. They rely on toughness and physicality to win, and Hall is their toughest and most physical player.
Josh Jones, Creighton: Jones passed out about 35 minutes prior to tip-off as the Bluejays were set to face Nebraska earlier this month. Jones went through a series of tests and it was determined he had an atrial flutter in the upper portion of his heart, which, essentially, means that he heart started beating too fast. That's not a good thing for Jones, who went through open heart surgery back in 2007. His career isn't over, but it's on permanent hold. On Tuesday, Jones will undergo a radiofrequency ablation to try and diagnose and fix the issue, but it will be at least a month before it is known whether or not he can return to the court.
Danny Berger, Utah State: Berger suffered sudden cardiac arrest at a Utah State practice two weeks ago. He was resuscitated through CPR and the use of an AED. Though he may never play basketball again, he made it through the ordeal.
Marshall Plumlee and Seth Curry, Duke: Marshall has missed the entire season with a stress fracture in his left foot, but the third Plumlee brother is set to make his debut for Duke at some point this week. The Blue Devils play Cornell and Elon in back-to-back days on Dec. 19 and 20. It's unclear just how much of an impact Plumlee will have this season, but he's seven feet tall and athletic, which means that Coach K will have someone to spell Mason for the rest of the year.
Curry's situation is a bit different, has he is dealing with a lower leg injury that simply won't go away. He sat out a win over Delaware on Dec. 1 but he was in the lineup and scored 23 points in a win over Temple on Dec. 8. Expect Curry to miss a couple of games here and there throughout the season, but to be in the lineup for big games.
Justin Wesley, Kansas: Wesley broke his pinkie last Thursday in practice diving for a loose ball. He'll be out of the lineup for three weeks, which means that he will be out for Saturday's trip to Columbus to take on Ohio State but he will be back by Big 12 play, perhaps as early as a Jan. 6th date with Temple. Wesley is a role player, but without him on the roster, the Jayhawk's front court depth takes a hit.
Jon Horford, Michigan: Horford has battled injuries throughout his career as a Wolverine, but just when it finally looked like he was rounding into shape this season, the Horford suffered a dislocated knee-cap in Saturday night's win over West Virginia. John Beilein said he hopes that Horford can be back within two to three weeks, but it's unclear at this point what the timeframe for the injury is. The good news? Fourth-string big man Max Bielfeldt, who has missed the last four games because of an ankle injury, has been practicing fully in recent days.
Jeronne Maymon, Tennessee: Maymon is still out of the lineup and still being kept off of his bad knees. He had surgery on both knees this summer in two separate procedures, and Tennessee has been mum on an expected return date. The longer he is held out, the lower the expectations Vol fans should have about his impact. That said, Tennessee did beat a good Wichita State team without him. So keep that in mind.
DJ Stephens, Memphis: Stephens has been the heart and soul for this Memphis team all year long, providing them with energy, defense and a bevy of highlight-reel dunks. But he's been battling left shoulder issues all year long that stem from a dislocation he suffered in a game out in the Battle 4 Atlantis in November. He reinjured the shoulder on Saturday against Louisville, when he collided with a Cardinal player while trying to make a steal. He left the court in obvious pain, and there has yet to be an update on his condition.
Kwamain Mitchell, St. Louis: This season has been tough enough for the Billikens, as they've had to deal with the passing of head coach Rick Majerus. Things haven't been easy on the floor either, as St. Louis has done so without the services of Mitchell, their starting point guard. Mitchell broke his foot on the second day of practice, but he's out of a walking boot now and eyes a return somewhere between Dec. 28 and Jan. 10.
Julian Boyd, LIU-Brooklyn: Boyd, the reigning NEC Player of the Year for the two-time defending NEC champs, tore his ACL on Wednesday in a win against Rice. He'll miss the rest of the season. The Blackbirds have plenty of talent on their roster and should still be a favorite to win the league, but this is a big blow, especially considering that it is Boyd's senior season.
DeAndre Kane, Marshall: Kane, Marshall's leading scorer and one of the nation's leaders in assists, broke a bone in his right hand last week. He'll be out for up to six weeks, but as he told reporters against the Thundering Herd lost to Cincinnati, "I'm not going to be out any six weeks. I'll be back sooner than that."
Kris Dunn and Vincent Council, Providence: Dunn was one of the nation's best point guard recruits, but thanks to shoulder surgery over the summer, he's yet to suit up for the Friars. That will happen on Dec. 18th against Colgate, his father said. Vincent Council has been out with a hamstring problem, but he's expected to return soon as well.
Aaric Murray, West Virginia: Murray isn't injured, but his status within the Mountaineer program is unclear. He was left back in Morgantown when West Virginia traveled to New York to take on Michigan. After the game, Bob Huggins had this to say on the matter: "I've left guys home way, way, way better than Aaric Murray ... I love this University. We're going to represent it the right way."
Ian Miller and Terrance Shannon, Florida State: Miller has been playing with a bone bruise in his foot all season long, which is part of the reason that his productivity is down this season. He sat out last Sunday's game against Maine, and likely won't be in the lineup against Louisiana-Monroe on Monday night. Shannon is dealing with a neck issue, termed a "stinger", and missed the game against Maine as well.
Stephen Holt, St. Mary's: Holt suffered a bone bruise in his left knee in practice two weeks ago. He's sat out the last three games, but head coach Randy Bennett hopes to have him back in the lineup on Wednesday, when the Gaels take on Pacific.
Marshall Wood, Virginia Tech: Wood broke a bone in his left foot, which is bad news for a Hokie team that is now down to just seven scholarship players. Wood's a freshman that had been playing more than 18 minutes per game.
Drew Crawford, Northwestern: Crawford will have shoulder surgery, which will end his season prematurely. Crawford has a torn labrum, and was trying to play through the pain. He'll apply for a medical redshirt.
Jaylen Bond, Texas: Bond has played all of five minutes this season as he deals with a foot injury. According to Rick Barnes, Bond is "getting close", but there's no sense in rushing his return. Until Myck Kabongo is cleared by the NCAA, the Longhorns are going to have all kinds of issues.