Matt Stainbrook injury watch

Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

The longer the wait goes on, the more Xavier fans brace themselves for the worst.

All day Xavier Nation has obsessively checked Twitter, message boards, email, texts, and anything else that they think may contain a Matt Stainbrook injury update. All day long, every possible source of information has come up empty. Our sources inside the program have simply said that there is nothing to pass along right now. So, with Xavier having rebounded nicely from the disaster that was last season, this one now hangs in the balance and word on the man that makes it all tick is exceedingly hard to come by.

Back before the siren song of making millions to cover Xavier for SBN came calling, I coached and played a little bit of college ball. Injury management was a large part of the game and from that experience it seems possible to speculate a little bit on why we haven't heard anything:

  1. Matt's knee is still too inflamed to get a good image- This is obviously not a good thing. Frequently, when traumatic injury occurs, the soft tissue in the area of the injury becomes so damaged that the swelling and inflammation can prevent an accurate diagnosis. In the case of an unhappy triad injury, especially to someone of Matt's size, that kind of inflammation wouldn't be totally unexpected.
  2. There is a drastic injury, but the exact scope isn't known- It's also possible that all immediate signs point to a tear of something, but Xavier's medical staff isn't completely sure how drastic it s yet. In that case there would be no point in putting out a statement that would have to corrected within the next few days. There's just not a good reason to say anything until something solid is known.
  3. There is some chance Matt can play on Thursday- If Matt thinks he can go on Thursday, and there isn't reason to believe that his knee is dramatically injured, Xavier would wait and see how things develop before releasing a statement. This would have the added benefit of keeping Nova from preparing as well, but that seems like a minimal concern. Obviously, this is the best case scenario and, unfortunately, probably the least likely.
I can't emphasize enough that this is all speculation. I suspect, but have no reason to believe, that #1 is the case here. Men Stainbrook's size don't generally react to injury the way he did and then play again in three days. It's not impossible that Xavier's big man could return, but the longer the wait, the more the trepidation grows.
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