”It’s not good,” said OU head coach Lon Kruger. “You know, Buddy’s got a fracture in the fifth metatarsal in that right foot, so we’ll discuss the options tomorrow or later tonight and see where that goes. But it’ll be a while before Buddy gets back and guys are [disappointed].
”I mean, Buddy—he loves to play obviously and it hurts everyone when that’s taken away, so we’re disappointed by that.”
Early indications are that Hield could be sidelined for four to five weeks—Kruger said so on his radio show immediately following the game—meaning he’d miss the rest of the regular season and possibly the Big 12 Tournament and/or the NCAA Tournament, should the Sooners make it that far.
Regardless how long he’s out, there’s no doubt the Sooners will miss his energy and production, which included nearly nine points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists heading into the contest.
”I mean, Buddy is a terrific guy and we all love him to death,” said OU forward Amath M’Baye. “I think everybody around campus loves him to death, and he’s just doing such a great job giving us energy that we’re definitely going to miss it. But knowing Buddy, I know that from the court or from the bench he’s still gonna be [energized], have the same production energy wise.
”He’s still going to get us going. He’s still going to take care of us, and I’m looking forward to seeing him back on the court. I’m very sad about his injury, and it affects me a lot, too.”
Forward Romero Osby echoed those sentiments.
“Yeah, just going off kinda what Amath said, it just couldn’t happen to a better person,” said OU’s leading scorer. “I mean, he’s one of the first people in the gym every day and one of the last people to leave. And you just love him as a [person], I mean, I look at him as like a little brother and it always hurts to see a family member drop down.
”But he’s in good spirits. Hopefully he stays in good spirits, and he’s going to be one of those guys [where] he’s going to contribute to the team no matter what he’s doing. We’re just going to try to continue to win for him and continue to play hard for him.”
The Sooners are hopeful they’ll get him back at some point this season, but that is uncertain.
”I have no idea,” Kruger said. “I have no idea. Any time you have a fracture, it takes time to heal. We’ll have to turn that to the trainers and doctors to kinda give us a [prognosis], anticipate a return date.”
Surgery is something else the training staff will have to discuss, and that could take place as early as tomorrow if they elect to go that route.
Hield was not available for comment, with OU saying his was too upset to give a statement.
The Sooners will get back to action without him when they face Oklahoma State at 12:30 p.m. CT Saturday inside Gallagher-Iba Arena.
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