During an interview with KREF 1400 on Tuesday afternoon, Oklahoma head basketball coach Lon Kruger stated that freshman guard, Buddy Hield, is expected to play Wednesday night against West Virginia.
Hield suffered a broken bone in his foot back on February 11th during the Sooners win against TCU. At the time, Hield was expected to miss up to six weeks but was adamant just days after the injury that he would be back much sooner than the expected time frame. It would appear Hield has done just that.
Prior to his injury, Hield was arguably Oklahoma's best defender and had also played his way into the starting lineup.
Of course the immediate question that comes to mind with this news is whether or not it is worth putting Hield back out there, risking a possible aggravation to that foot, or holding him out until the Big 12 and/or NCAA Tournament?
Kruger was very clear in the interview that he did not expect Hield to play extended minutes against West Virginia, but that they were going to give him a chance to go out and at least work some of the rust off.
While several other players, namely Sam Grooms and Steven Pledger, stepped up their production during Hield's absence, this has to be considered good news for the Sooners. Even if Hield's minutes are limited Wednesday night, just getting him back out there is good for both him and the team. These last two regular season games allow for the opportunity to re-establish some of that chemistry they had prior to Hield's injury. Which, of course, would ideally prevent that from having to occur in the postseason.