Middleton Nearing Return for Texas A&MPosted by dnspewak on December 6th, 2011
Khris Middleton could be returning to Texas A&M at exactly the right time.
The preseason All-Big 12 wing played in the Aggies’ season opener, but he underwent surgery for a partially torn meniscus in mid-November and has not played since. According to a tweet by Jon Rothstein today, Middleton participated in a full practice yesterday for the first time since his injury. Although no news outlets have reported anything about his official return yet, we’ve got to think A&M will have its star back by the time it plays Florida on December 17.
Without Middleton, the Aggies have managed to avoid disaster. At 6-1, they own a one-point win over St. John’s and have handled all of the inferior opponents on their schedule. But Billy Kennedy’s squad has also looked far from perfect. In its only true test of the season against Mississippi State in the NIT Tip-Off at the Garden, the Bulldogs embarrassed the Aggies, running away with the game during the first 10 minutes of regulation. Without Middleton, A&M looked lost offensively, and that has carried over throughout his month out of action. A&M struggled to pull away from the likes of Alcorn State and Stephen F. Austin, and they have been especially poor from three-point range. Against Alcorn, for example, they missed all 17 three-pointers they attempted.
If Middleton can return to A&M sometime during the next week, he could suit up for the game on Saturday against Louisiana-Monroe. The Aggies can survive without Middleton in the short term, but they’ll need him at full strength when they face the Gators. Middleton brings more than just his 14.4 points per game from the 2010-11 campaign. With a developed inside game as well the ability to shoot, he’s a matchup problem for almost every team. When he hits the court for the first time since his surgery, the dynamics of A&M’s team will change dramatically — for the better.