Sophomore forward Alex Guyton was expected to be a starter for Purdue this season but a stress fracture in her lower leg not only has kept her from playing a minute, it also might keep her off the court for all of 2009-10.
Guyton practiced some this week, but coach Sharon Versyp said she's considering redshirting Guyton.
That decision could come down to if Guyton can handle the pain, Versyp said. "When she practiced, she's like, 'I can't believe how many body parts you use, what muscles,' " Versyp said. "It's not just her shin (that hurt), it's her whole body. We have to figure out if it's the stress fracture that's hurting or is it more the soreness around the muscles."
Versyp said she'd like to play Guyton against Gardner-Webb on Dec. 21 and have her play in a couple more games before making a decision.
Guyton was a reserve forward on last season's Elite 8 team that was packed with seniors and frontcourt talent. But she was expected to be a key contributor for the Boilermakers this season.
Instead, Purdue has had to rely on Chelsea Jones, who played sparingly as a freshman last season, and Sam Woods in the post. The Boilermakers already are without another likely impact player in Chantel Poston, who is out for the season with an Achilles' injury.
Purdue, which has lost five of its last six games, is using only seven players in its rotation.
"If (Guyton) can come back, she's not the cure-all by any means," Versyp said. "But just her having some experience, having that body on the court, how she posts up and catching the ball and being able to shoot over people and her jumping ability ... just having her on the court (is) a difference."