Mitch McGary to miss opener

Updated: November 7, 2013, 12:19 PM ET
By Jeff Goodman | ESPN.com

Michigan big man Mitch McGary, who spurned the NBA after his breakout performance in the NCAA tournament, will miss the Wolverines' season opener because of a lower back injury.

Mitch McGary and Adreian Payne
AP Photo/Tony DingMitch McGary was named to the AP preseason All-America team after averaging 7.5 points and 6.3 rebounds per game last season as a freshman and helping propel Michigan to the NCAA title game.

"He's improving every day, making great improvements in everything he can do," coach John Beilein told WTKA-AM in Ann Arbor. "No, he won't [be available Friday]."

Michigan opens the season Friday night at home against UMass-Lowell.

The 6-foot-10, 265-pound McGary, named a preseason All-American by The Associated Press, sat out the preseason and the timetable for his return remains uncertain. Sources have told ESPN.com that McGary's health has improved over the past month but that the staff is being cautious in hopes he won't miss a significant portion of the season.

McGary averaged 7.5 points and 6.3 rebounds per game last season as a freshman but was critical for the Wolverines in their run to the national title game. He averaged 14.3 points and 10.8 rebounds in the six tournament games and would have been a likely first-round pick in the NBA draft.

Michigan lost Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. to the NBA.

The Wolverines' starting lineup in two exhibition games featured veterans Jordan Morgan and Jon Horford up front with Glenn Robinson III at small forward and Nik Stauskas at shooting guard. Beilein started Spike Albrecht at the point against Concordia and went with freshman Derrick Walton against Wayne State this past weekend.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.


ALSO SEE