Nov. 19, 2007
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
University of Louisville senior center David Padgett could be sidelined for the entire 2007-08 season after suffering a broken right kneecap in the Cardinals' 84-53 victory over Jackson State on Sunday, U of L's second game of the season.
X-rays and a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) test taken at Jewish Hospital revealed a non-displaced fracture of his right patella. The injury will take at least 10 weeks to heal, or may require surgery to repair. Padgett suffered the injury in the first half of the Jackson State game while drawing a defensive charge and did not return to action.
"We're all devastated for David," said U of L Coach Rick Pitino. "This young man has worked so hard to come back from injuries in the past. Because of his leadership ability, his intelligence and fortitude, there are a lot of roads that lead to prosperity for him, and not just in basketball. He has an extremely bright future.
"The best-case scenario is that he could possibly come back in 10 weeks if the knee heals on its own. Second case is that an appeal to the NCAA could yield him a sixth year of eligibility, but we know that is remote. The third case is he sits out this season without the ability to return to our team and then tries to make a professional team. Only time will tell about his future.
"He's our leader, he's our best passer inside, he really makes our offense go and breaks full court pressure extremely well. It certainly is a big blow to our basketball team."
A unanimous selection for the Cardinals' team captain among teammates and coaches, Padgett was a preseason All-BIG EAST Conference selection and is among the top 50 players on the preseason watch list for the Naismith Trophy. He earned his bachelor's degree in political science in the spring and is currently taking graduate classes.
Last season, Padgett averaged 9.5 points, 5.6 rebounds and blocked 50 shots in earning All-BIG EAST Conference second team honors. He was averaging 9.5 points and 3.5 rebounds as the Cards' starter in the middle the first two outings this season.