UConn's season in big trouble now: Star frosh Alterique Gilbert out for year

No team has had a worse start to its season, all things considered, than Connecticut.

The Huskies, who entered the season as a top-20 team, are sub-.500 with only one victory against Division I opponents and now have lost two starters for the season because of injury. Last week it was Terry Larrier, who was playing better than any Husky in the early part of this campaign. He's done with an ACL injury. Tuesday afternoon, the school sent out a statement that said heralded freshman shooting guard Alterique Gilbert, a five-star prospect coming out of high school, will also miss the rest of the season.

Gilbert dislocated his left shoulder in UConn's victory at Loyola Marymount on Nov. 17. He has been diagnosed with a torn labrum. Surgery is scheduled "within the next few weeks to repair the damage and tighten the muscles. Recovery and rehabilitation could take up to six months," per UConn's statement.

And it just keeps coming for UConn -- because that's not all. Freshman forward Mamadou Diarra "has been diagnosed with significant patellofemoral syndrome, resulting in intense knee discomfort with the stress on the knees that high-level college basketball demands."

Diarra will sit the entire season. The hope is that he can get his knee in condition to where he doesn't have to quit his college career. Just a sad situation all around.

UConn's hopes of being an NCAA Tournament team have fallen through the floor. The Huskies will still have their chance, though, and Kevin Ollie's group is not short on talent. Yes, the team is now in the single digits when it comes to scholarship players, but remember that Jalen Adams is still on this team, as is Amida Brimah. Both of those players are among the 10 best in the American Athletic Conference. Rodney Purvis is also a big-time asset on offense.

It's going to be really tough, and UConn has yet to play one exceptionally good game to this point, but from a talent standpoint, this team is still capable of making noise in the AAC. Can they dodge any more injuries and turn around their season? We'll find out quickly. UConn will get Boston University at home on Wednesday, then has to play Syracuse at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 5 and follows up that game with a roadie vs. Ohio State on Dec. 10.

alteriquegilbert2.jpg
Alterique Gilbert is a promising shooting guard, and now UConn's offense needs a jolt. USATSI
CBS Sports Senior Writer

Matt Norlander is a national award-winning senior writer who has been with CBS Sports since 2010. He's in his ninth season reporting on college basketball for CBS, and also covers the NBA Draft, the Olympics... Full Bio

Our Latest Stories