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Indiana basketball guard Xavier Johnson out vs Maryland



Indiana basketball point guard Xavier Johnson.
Senior point guard Xavier Johnson will not play in the Big Ten opener for Indiana basketball with a foot injury. (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)

The Indiana basketball program opens up Big Ten play on Friday night and it will be without a key player and captain when it takes the floor.

Senior point guard Xavier Johnson will not play.

Johnson exited Indiana’s win over Harvard on Sunday shortly before halftime. He tried warming up before the second half but was unable to go.

He is averaging 10.5 points, 2.3 assists and is shooting 48.6 percent from the field in six games this year. He is tied for the team-lead in three-point shooting at 5-of-10 this year.

“We’re still evaluating X to see where he is. If he can’t play, it’s the next man up,” Indiana basketball head coach Mike Woodson said on Thursday. “That’s how it’s always been here. Injuries are part of the game. You know, nothing you can do about it. If he can’t play, then I expect somebody else to step up and play.”

Johnson is wearing a boot during warmups.

Johnson, who played in just 11 games last season due to a broken foot, was fully healthy to begin this year. In Indiana’s win over Wright State two weeks ago, he rolled his ankle just before the final buzzer.

“Unfortunately X didn’t get a chance to show what he did the first year last season because of his injury, and make no mistake about it, I say it, you guys probably couldn’t see it and didn’t write about it enough, but losing Xavier Johnson last year was huge for our team. I mean, it hurt us. We were able to regroup and recover from it, and a lot of that had to do with Jalen and the supporting cast. We just didn’t feel sorry. We got after it in practice and was able to maintain,” Woodson said at Indiana Basketball Media Day this fall.  “X is back this year, and again, like I said, he’s done it a little bit longer than most of the young men that we’ve got on our team, so I expect more. He’s wearing that captain title on his head, so you’ve got to give me more, you’ve got to do more to help us win basketball games, and he will.”

Johnson’s status and future timeline is still to be determined.

Indiana (5-1) faces Maryland (4-3) at 7:00 pm ET on Big Ten Network..

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Alec Lasley is the owner of Hoosier Illustrated, a comprehensive site covering news, updates and recruiting for Indiana University athletics. Alec has covered Indiana for six years and is a credentialed media member. He has previously worked for both Rivals and 247Sports.