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Hoosier freshman hurts shoulder

Sprain to sideline incoming center for a few weeks

Fischer

– Indiana freshman center Luke Fischer suffered a sprained left shoulder during a scrimmage this week and will be out for a few weeks, the IU Athletics department announced Thursday before its basketball media day at Assembly Hall.

Fischer, a 6-foot-11 newcomer out of Germantown, Wis., was Wisconsin’s Mr. Basketball and the Gatorade Player of the Year in the state.

A four-star prospect according to the 247Composite ranking service, Fischer was also a Parade All-American and one of the options to help fill the shoes of former Hoosiers center Cody Zeller, who departed for the NBA.

“Luke has made great strides and was playing with great confidence,” coach Tom Crean said in a statement. “He was being aggressive in his pursuit for the basketball when it happened.”

Fischer, along with sophomores Hanner Mosquera-Perea and Peter Jurkin, are the likely fill-ins for Zeller, the No. 4 draft pick in 2013. Jurkin, a 7-foot center, will return to the court for official practices after working through lower leg injuries that nagged him throughout most of the 2012-13 season.

“I’ve been away from practice a lot because of my injury, but now I’m excited,” said Jurkin, who played in three games last season because of his injury and a NCAA-mandated nine-game suspension at the start of the season. “Excited to be back, excited to be on the team again in practice and try to just work hard.”

The 6-9 Mosquera-Perea also served that nine-game suspension, which came from receiving improper benefits from AAU coach Mark Adams in high school, the NCAA said.

That missed time set the pair back some, Mosquera-Perea said, and he and Jurkin are eager to help fill in for Zeller with those problems behind them.

“I’m really excited, because obviously we’re missing some huge pieces from last year,” said Mosquera-Perea, whose squad also loses 1,000-point scorers Jordan Hulls, Victor Oladipo and Christian Watford. “Now there’s going to be more playing time out there for all of us, so I’m really excited to go out there and do my best and keep playing hard.”

Mosquera-Perea was particularly excited for Jurkin. The two played together in AAU ball, along with IU sophomores Kevin ‘Yogi’ Ferrell and Jeremy Hollowell, since they were 14.

“I know how he feels being out there and not being able to play because we had to miss those games and we had to miss some practices,” Mosquera-Perea said. “Knowing that he’s going to be back out there with us, that makes me happy, and I know he’s really happy about it.”

The program also announced that junior guard Austin Etherington has returned to full-contact practice.

Etherington broke his left patella last season. The program announced earlier in the week that freshman forward Troy Williams will miss a few weeks with an injury to his right hand. Williams hurt the hand in a workout.

Note: Crean will have a preseason lecture, open to the public, at 7 p.m. on Oct. 2 at the IU Auditorium.

smorrison@jg.net

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