Heels deal with news of Marshall's injury

jdaly@newsobserver.comMarch 19, 2012 

— His face drained of most of its color and sweat beads forming above his upper lip, Stilman White tried his best to strike a confident tone.

“I’ve definitely got my feet wet the last two games and got the NCAA tournament atmosphere,” White said. “I definitely feel comfortable out there and confident in myself.”

North Carolina coach Roy Williams had walked into the Tar Heels locker room seconds earlier and told his team that starting point guard Kendall Marshall had fractured the scaphoid bone in his right wrist.

The news took most of the shine off the 87-73 win against Creighton at the Greensboro Coliseum.

The implication was written on White’s face.

While the Tar Heels’ stressed they don’t know Marshall’s status, there’s a chance White will be North Carolina’s point guard when it plays in the Sweet 16 on Friday night in St. Louis.

If there is one player North Carolina could least afford to lose, just about everyone would say it’s Marshall.

If that actually comes to pass, the thankless task of trying to replace him could fall to White, a freshman from Wilmington who turned down scholarship offers from Brigham Young and Utah State to play at North Carolina.

As a result of the injuries to Leslie McDonald and Dexter Strickland, White has already played more minutes than anticipated this season. He’s seen action in 31 games, with his season-high in minutes coming against Nicholls (11 minutes).

He scored eight total points in ACC play, distributing a total of six assists.

“I’ve gained a lot of confidence as the season’s gone on,” White said. “Hopefully, if I have to go out there and do a little bit more, then I’m able to do that. I’m definitely confident in myself that I’m able to do that.”

White was still trying to process the stunning news and didn’t know if he’d approach the week as if Marshall weren’t going to play.

“I don’t know,” he said. “We’re just not sure right now. Hopefully, Kendall can go and we can prepare with him. Right now, I just don’t know. It’s too early to tell.”

White answered a couple more questions after that, repeatedly stating that he’d do his best if called upon.

There was one theme he kept returning to.

“Hopefully Kendall’s ready to go,” he said.

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service