Duke men’s basketball injury: Darrick Whitehead leaves the game



Duke’s Darrick Whitehead (0) winces in pain after being injured during the second half of Duke’s game against Virginia Tech at Cassell Coliseum in Blacksburg, Va., Monday, Jan. 23, 2023.


Duke freshman Darrick Whitehead injured his left leg during the second half of Monday night’s game at Virginia Tech.

With 17:20 left in the game and the Hokies leading 47-45, the 6-7 Whitehead landed awkwardly on his left foot while jumping in the air trying to grab a loose ball from a Virginia Tech player. Whitehead immediately began limping and holding onto his left leg.

The game continued until Virginia Tech’s Sean Pedula hit a 3-pointer with 17:10 left in the game. Then the referees stopped the game, and Whitehead hobbled to the bench, favoring his left leg.

He was immediately helped to the end of the bench, where he was examined by Duke coach Jose Fonseca. During a timeout with 15:50 left in the game, teammates Christian Reaves and Kyle Catchings helped Whitehead to the Duke locker room after he was unable to put full weight on his left leg.

Duke basketball spokesman Mike DeGeorge said Whitehead suffered a calf injury and is doubtful to return.

Whitehead is projected to be a first-round pick for the Blue Devils in June’s NBA draft and is averaging 8.3 points and 2.5 rebounds. He suffered a fractured right foot during a team practice in August that kept him out of Duke’s first three games.

After his return, he played in 16 games. Monday night’s game was his sixth starting assignment. Before the injury, he scored 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting.

This story will be updated.

This story was originally published January 23, 2023 8:23 p.m.

Steve Wiseman has covered Duke athletics since 2010 for the Durham Herald-Sun and the Raleigh News & Observer. In 2019, he was runner-up for both beat writing and breaking news in the Associated Press Sports Editors National Contest. Steve previously worked for The State (Columbia, SC), Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, SC), The Sun Herald (Biloxi, MO), Charlotte Observer and Hickory (NC) Daily Record covering beats including NFL’s Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints, University of South Carolina athletics and SC General Assembly. He has won numerous state-level press association awards. Steve graduated from Illinois State University in 1989.

Duke men’s basketball injury: Darrick Whitehead leaves the game

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