North Carolina will be without senior forward Isaiah Hicks at Duke tonight, the school announced 85 minutes before game time. According to a spokesman, Hicks strained his left hamstring in practice Wednesday when he landed awkwardly after dunking during a fast-break drill and is day-to-day.
The loss of Hicks, who averages 12.8 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, is particularly damaging against Duke as he's more mobile than North Carolina's other big men, Kennedy Meeks and Tony Bradley, and would have been expected to guard a perimeter player against Duke's four-guard offense.
According to a spokesman, Hicks collided with Joel Berry, who was trying to take a charge during the drill, and strained his hamstring in the process. Luke Maye could make his first career start Thursday in Hicks’ absence. Hicks did come out for warmups with his teammates.
The Tar Heels do expect to get Theo Pinson back in the lineup after missing three games with a foot injury. North Carolina is 6-0 with Pinson in the lineup this season.
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Luke DeCock: 919-829-8947, firstname.lastname@example.org, @LukeDeCock