Injury knocks Duke's Hood from Team USA

Jun. 28, 2013 @ 01:02 PM

While the initial diagnosis is that Rodney Hood does not have a torn Achilles’ tendon, the Duke redshirt sophomore forward will not continue participating with USA Basketball’s World University Games team.

Ricky Hood, Rodney’s father, said Friday that his 6-8 son is heading back to Durham to receive further treatment on the injury, which he suffered Wednesday night in practice at the USA Basketball Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“He has some swelling and soreness,” Ricky Hood said. “We haven’t gotten a definitive answer yet. We know there is no tear. But there is a lot of soreness and that kind of thing.”

Team USA head coach Bob McKillop, Davidson’s head coach, announced Friday that Hood, one of 16 finalists to make the 12-man team, was leaving the team due to the injury.

“I feel so sorry for Rodney,” McKillop said. “He committed himself fully to be a part of this team, and we will miss him. He would have been a valuable team member for USA Basketball.”

A Southeastern Conference all-freshman team pick in 2011-12, Hood transferred to Duke and sat out last season per NCAA rules. An athletic wing who averaged 10.3 points, 4.8 rebound and 2.0 assists for Mississippi State, Hood was one of 26 players invited to tryout for the U.S. World University Games team.

McKillop and his staff trimmed that roster to 16 on June 26 and, with Hood’s departure, will have to cut three more players before the team heads to Russia on Monday.

Ricky Hood said the hope is that Rodney Hood’s injury can be treated without surgery, although that decision won’t be made until the foot is examined by Duke’s medical staff.

“He feels like its something he can treat and we have total confidence in the Duke training staff,” Ricky Hood said. “It’s a missed opportunity for him but we’d rather be safe than sorry.”

After seeing Hood practice with the Blue Devils throughout last season, Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski is expecting Hood to be a major player for the team in the upcoming season.