EAST LANSING, Mich. — CJ Fredrick missed his third straight game Tuesday night with an ankle injury, meaning the Iowa basketball team was planning to go with a short bench yet again vs. Michigan State.
Fredrick was classified as a game-time decision, but he was wearing a suit and inactive as Hawkeye players went through warmups.
Fredrick hasn't played since spraining his right ankle Feb. 13 at Indiana.
The redshirt freshman guard was optimistic that he would return for Saturday's 11 a.m. home game against Penn State. That will mark 16 days since the initial injury.
Coach Fran McCaffery said Monday that he wasn't going to put Fredrick on the court until he's 100%. Keeping him out of Tuesday's game was a reflection that Fredrick's ankle wasn't quite ready. McCaffery wants Fredrick available for March, even if it meant missing a game pitting second-place teams in the Big Ten Conference. Nothing wrong with that.
After the game, McCaffery said this of Fredrick: “I think CJ will be ready Saturday, but he hasn’t been cleared yet. We’ll see how he does the next couple days.”
Hawkeyes columnist Chad Leistikow has covered sports for 25 years with The Des Moines Register, USA TODAY and Iowa City Press-Citizen. Follow @ChadLeistikow on Twitter.