Julius Randle, one of the nation’s top high school basketball prospects, is expected to miss the next three months of action after suffering a fractured right foot in a game against Duncanville during the Thanksgiving Hoopfest.
“It was pretty much a freak thing because I didn’t step on anyone’s foot or anything, I just came down regular. It felt like there was a small knot on the bottom of my foot or something,” said Randle in regards to his injury.
Everyone, including Randle himself, seems to be in agreement that this is nothing more than a minor setback for the 6’9″ 225 pound, power forward from Prestonwood Christian Academy. Even though his value may not drop among recruiters, this injury presents another troubling dilemma for Julius. If he wants to fulfill his dream of participating in the McDonald’s All-American game, then he must get on a fast track to the road of recovery.
When talking about McDonald’s All-American game, Randle said “It’s been a lifelong dream of mine, and to think that something that was completely out of my control could stop me from playing really bothers me. I’ll definitely be back to 100 percent well before the McDonald’s game so I’m hoping that I’ll be able to play. I had heard that you have to play in a certain amount of games during the season to be eligible, and I’m working hard to get back as soon as I possibly can.”
Randle heard correctly. In order to be eligible for the game, players must play at least half of their senior season. This rule puts a delicate timeline in place for Randle’s recovery. In order to be eligible, Julius would have to aim at returning to action sometime in mid-January. This would cut his expected three month recovery period short by a few weeks.
Even if circumstances don’t allow Randle to be back on the court before the halfway mark of this season, he remains optimistic that an exception might be made for him. “I’ll do whatever it takes to play in the game. I have heard that the rule was put in place for guys who move around to different schools, and that’s not me. I’m just hoping that the committee will be able to see what I’ve done to this point and feel like it’s enough to get me in, especially since it was a freak accident that has me sidelined and I’ll be back and ready way before the game,” said Randle.
As the winter progresses we’ll keep an eye on the progress of Randle’s foot and explore whether or not he has a chance of fulfilling his dream and playing in the McDonald’s All-American Game. In the meantime, let’s just hope he doesn’t try to come back before his body is ready.