Montana senior point guard Will Cherry – the team’s leading scorer during its record-breaking 2011-12 season – broke his right foot during a pick-up game in open gym last Saturday.
Cherry said he could be sidelined anywhere from six to 10 weeks and that surgery is a possibility.
“I took off for a layup and when I launched, my foot popped on me,” Cherry said Wednesday.
Cherry said he would decide in the next few days whether to have surgery. Surgery would help the foot heal faster, but in the long run it would heal stronger if left to heal naturally, he said.
“I haven’t decided on surgery,” said Cherry, who is wearing a hard cast.
Cherry averaged 15.8 points a game and was the leader of a team that broke the school record for Big Sky Conference wins with 15 and advanced to the NCAA tournament for the second time in three seasons. He is the school's all-time career leader in steals.
Practice is scheduled to begin Oct. 12 and the Grizzlies' first regular-season game is Nov. 9 at Colorado State, which is a little more than six weeks hence.
Cherry is a fourth-year senior, meaning he does have the option of sitting out as a redshirt and returning next season.
“It depends on how my foot responds,” Cherry said. “I wouldn’t want to push it and re-break it. If I felt like I could go out and play at a high level, then I would come back this year.”
Regardless of what Cherry decides, seventh-year head coach Wayne Tinkle will be without his starting point guard when practice opens in roughly two weeks. Behind Cherry at point guard are sophomores Keron DeShields and Jordan Gregory, although junior wing Kareem Jamar has played the point before in Cherry’s absence.
“It just means other guys are going to have to step up,” Tinkle said. “He’s a big reason we’ve won a lot of games the last few years, but we have other guys who are capable.”