Skip to content
College Sports
Link copied to clipboard

Jay Wright says Phil Booth's return for Villanova is 'not looking good'

Villanova guard Phil Booth continues to experience pain in his surgically-repaired left knee and coach Jay Wright said "it's not looking good" that he will return to the lineup this season.

Villanova coach Jay Wright says the condition of junior guard Phil Booth's knee hasn't improved and that "it's not looking good" for him to return to the team's lineup this season.

"As I've said, every day that we don't get him in practice, it looks worse for getting him back," Wright said Wednesday night after the Wildcats' 75-64 win over Georgetown.

"Again, I'm going to let him make that decision. He hasn't had to make a decision because he hasn't been cleared for practice yet. The longer it goes … he's going to have to make a choice. So it's not looking good."

The 6-foot-3 Booth, who scored a team-high 20 points in the national championship game against North Carolina, has been out since mid-November with left knee inflammation. He underwent arthroscopic surgery on the knee in May, and played the first three games of the season before being sidelined.

Wright said Booth had another setback in recent days.

"He's working every day to try to get where we can practice him," he said. "He went fullcourt the other day and came up sore the next day – fullcourt just working out, not with the team, just on his own. He came up sore the next day and we had to rest him for two or three days. That's why I say, it doesn't look good."

Wright reiterated that there was no deadline to make a decision, and that he was leaving that up to Booth. He said the player will have "a couple of choices.

"We've got to find out what the rules are," he said. "If it gets to a point down the road and he's healthy, does he have a choice to say, 'I have only four games left, I don't want to play.' We're not even sure about that. Then, if one of the choices is surgery, and he chooses surgery, he's done obviously. If he doesn't choose surgery, probably it's going to be longer rest."

Without Booth, the Wildcats have just seven players in their regular rotation and are missing a vital player who can play both backcourt positions.