Michigan sophomore Mitch McGary announced Friday afternoon that he will soon have surgery to repair a lingering back issue. Officially, the school has listed him as "out indefinitely." But, given that it's almost January, it seems likely that the procedure will sideline the preseason All-American for the remainder of the 2013-14 season.
"My back problems have been a daily challenge ever since late August," McGary said. "We have worked hard rehabbing the injury, and I thought that everything was proceeding in the right direction until the last two weeks. I have consulted with my family, my coaches and our doctors and decided the best option now is to have surgery."
McGary was projected as a possible lottery pick in the 2013 NBA Draft after averaging 14.3 points and 10.7 rebounds for the national runners-up. But the 6-foot-10 forward opted to return to school, and that decision was a big reason why the Wolverines were ranked seventh in the preseason AP poll despite the loss of Wooden Award winner Trey Burke.
McGary only played in eight of Michigan's first 11 games this season. He's averaging 9.5 points and 8.3 rebounds, and the Wolverines are 7-4 and unranked. They're scheduled to play Holy Cross on Saturday. They open Big Ten play Thursday against Minnesota.