After Virginia Tech's loss at North Carolina, Buzz Williams announced that forward P.J. Horne is out indefinitely with an undisclosed injury.
In 17 games this season, Horne is averaging 4.8 points and 3.1 rebounds per game while shooting 65.5% from the field. Horne suffered this injury during the second half of Virginia Tech's win over Wake Forest with Horne limping off the floor with what didn't seem to be a significant injury at that time.
With Horne out, the Hokies have no true backup forward to spell Kerry Blackshear, putting even more pressure on the redshirt junior to avoid foul trouble and play over 30 minutes per night. When Blackshear isn't on the floor, VT seems likely to slide Ty Outlaw into the center role with no other good option after that.
Horne's injury is where Virginia Tech's lack of frontcourt depth is being exposed as Chris Clarke was able to consistently rotate into the five role in a sixth man-like role at times last season while Khadim Sy's departure took away some frontcourt depth. In addition, Landers Nolley might not be a post player but at 6'7'', Nolley would give the Hokies some extra size if it wasn't for the NCAA issue he's had to deal with relating to his ACT score.
While having Horne hurts, the focus of the Hokies should be on making sure that he's ready to go for the ACC and NCAA Tournaments. Unless Horne is able to return within the next few weeks, it makes more sense for the Hokies to wait as long as they can to make sure he's 100% whether that comes in time for the ACC Tournament or the NCAA Tournament.
Photo Credit: Dave Knachel/Virginia Tech Athletics
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