Just a couple days before Wisconsin’s Friday night exhibition contest, the UW Sports Medicine Staff announced that Wisconsin redshirt sophomore forward Aleem Ford will have knee surgery on Wednesday after suffering an injury during practice.
With the surgery forthcoming, the staff declared Ford will be out indefinitely—though Wisconsin reported he “is expected to return” to the team later on during UW’s 2018–19 campaign.
During the 2017–18 campaign as a redshirt freshman, Ford played in all 33 games with 20 starts. The Lawrenceville, Ga., product scored 5.8 points per game and 2.8 rebounds per contest while leading the team in three-point percentage (40.9 percent). That ranked him 11th in the Big Ten Conference last season.
With the loss of Ford for an undetermined amount of time, the depth of the Wisconsin frontcourt takes a hit. He became a valuable contributor last year and was in place to once again participate in head coach Greg Gard’s rotation during the 2018–19 season.
Though it was just a closed scrimmage against Iowa State on Oct. 28, he played well in contributing 19 points and connecting on all three three-point attempts.
Maybe the biggest attribute Wisconsin will miss with the 6’8 forward out is that three-point shooting from the tall and athletic wing. Now a slew of others at that position—sophomore Nate Reuvers and seniors Charles Thomas and Alex Illikainen, all with different skill sets at the position—will have to significantly step up in Ford’s absence to complement redshirt senior Ethan Happ and a deep backcourt.