Coach B Speaks on Rahk Injury

Prior to the start of practice this afternoon Coach Buonaguro took a moment to speak with the media about the season ending injury to Rakeem Brookins.

“The diagnosis wasn’t great,” Said Buonaguro. “Not only does he have a bulging disc, but he’s got a herniated disc too. So, there’s two issues with his back. Its going to take at least 6 weeks, i think, to get the right treatment, and the medication, and then it really takes him out of circulation until January, and we don’t want to rush him back. It was a decision made, i think, with alot of thought and we just decided to take a medical red shirt.”

“I feel bad for him. I mean Rahk is a warrior. He had a really good freshmen year. He’s kind of our leader in the backcourt. I thought he made the next step. He worked hard this summer, and to have an injury like that at his age is really out of the norm. It’s a serious back injury that needs proper care and treatment and then i hope just for his career he’s ok and he comes back next year 100%.”

The extent of the treatment, and the effect the injury will have on Brookins beyond this year, is still a relative unknown this early into the diagnosis of the problem.

“Well i don’t think a decision has been made about the treatment yet. Its being treated now by medication and therapy, but i don’t know what’s going to be decided after the six weeks. That’s between him and the doctor. Hopefully we can avoid surgery. That’s one thing we don’t want to do. So, we have to wait see how the six weeks goes. It’s a six week program that he’s going to be on, see how it works out.”

Despite the loss of his top returning scorer and point guard, Coach did not expect the loss to change much for the Saints on the court.

“It doesn’t change much,” Said Coach. “I think luckily, thank God, we recruited two kids late, Evan Hymes and Davonte Beard, who are going to obviously take up that role. I don’t want to put Kyle Downey there, because that takes away from his scoring. So, you know it’s going to be like last year when we were playing freshmen there. Its going to take some time for them to acclimate to the position. Evan is a point guard so it will be easy for him. Davonte is more of a combo guard so i think the adjustment for him will be a little more difficult.”

Speaking of Hymes and Beard, Coach feels that the two freshmen are ready to step in to a more prominent role.

“They’ve been getting alot of reps in practice. I think they’re ready. I think Evan, you know, he is a point guard. He understands the position. He played it in high school. He’s very quick. Davonte will be a little more of an adjustment. He’s going to back him up. The one thing i like about Davonte though is he’s a player. He makes plays. So, you know we’re going to have to live with some mistakes early, but hopefully they’ll grow and get better. ”

The bad news for the Saints doesn’t end with the injury to Brookins. Trenity Burdine will also not be able to play in the opener against Navy.

‘No, no way. He’s out. I’d say at least another week, maybe more,” said Coach Buonaguro when asked about Burdine’s status.

With Rahk and Burdine out the Saints are left with only eight scholarship athletes on the roster. What will the team that takes the floor on the 16th look like?

“It would be Hymes, Downey, Wignot, Walters, and Anosike,” said Coach when asked who the starters would be. “Three scholarship kids off the bench, all freshmen.”

With so many players out leaving a depleted roster, wins and losses become a hard measure of success for the team.

“What i’ve been trying to do is talk more about each day getting better,” said Coach Buonaguro. “I don’t want to start talking about wins. Right now The key is we got to get better each day I think then we’ll be competitive during the season. No, we expect to go into every game and play well and try to win every game. We’ve been hit with some blows but we’re still not going to make excuses for that.”


One Comment

  1. Anonymous

    November 9, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    I think the new coaches will help out tremendously this year; particularly with all the injuries. You must keep the glass half-full, make sure the kids stay confident, and always try to turn a negative into a positive. The idea is to improve game to game – and I think they will.

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