Snowden’s torn ACL puts senior season in jeopardy

Leslie Combs

Already readjusting the preseason line-up due to suspensions still to be served by several members of the men’s basketball team, the Wildcats are left with yet another spot to fill, and likely for longer than three to eight games.

Senior guard Derrick Snowden underwent surgery at Bryn Mawr Hospital to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.

Although the Sept. 29 surgery, performed by team surgeon Dr. Rob Good, was successful in mending the torn ACL, a return date for the starting guard is not known, and his status for the 2003-04 season is up in the air.

“There is not a road map for his recovery,” Media Relations Director Mike Sheridan said. “Snow is not ruled out for the season yet. These injuries can go on for months to a year.”

According to NCAA regulations, an athlete does not have to declare he is officially red-shirting until the end of the season. If he or she did not participate in any games, they then can declare a red-shirt season.

Last season Chris Charles took the same approach with his red-shirted 2003-04 year, waiting until later in the season to determine whether or not he could return to the court when he ultimately took the entire year off to recover.

While Snowden hopes to recover in order to join his teammates on the court for his senior year, his future is unknown, especially given the sensitive area of the knee.

Last season Snowden led the team in minutes played, averaging 29.6 minutes per game, and led the team with 108 assists while averaging 8.6 points per game. The recent NCAA report announced Snowden still must serve a three game suspension as a result of misusing a University telephone access code last year.

Replacing the veteran at the five spot will likely be sophomores Allan Ray and Randy Foye. Rookie Mike Nardi will also be asked to step up into the guard role in his first season on the Main Line.

Villanova’s head trainer Jeff Pierce and surgeon Good will continually monitor Snowden’s recovery and will conclude in the upcoming months when he will be cleared to play again this season, if at all.

-Leslie Campbell