The next month of the Oregon State basketball season just got a bit more cloudy on Wednesday, as center Gligorije Rakocevic was diagnosed with a stress fracture in his left foot, according to reporter Nick Daschel of the Oregonian. The 6’ 11”, 260-pound talent is expected to miss 4-6 weeks with the injury, which could hamper his return by the start of Pac-12 Conference portion of the schedule.
Oregon State Center Gligorije Rakocevic out 4-6 weeks with a stress fracture in his left foot.— nick daschel (@nickdaschel) November 28, 2018
The news of the bruising forward’s injury will force head coach Wayne Tinkle to shake things up in terms of line-ups and minutes distribution, with a likely focus around more usage of backup center Kylor Kelley, newcomer Warren Washington or even scarcely used freshman Jack Wilson on the interior. With a relative lack of front-court depth behind Rakocevic, it may also morph Oregon State into a team that has to rely on “small-ball” line-ups more often, with the potential of star forward Tres Tinkle returning to a more post-dominant role, as well.
Swing players like Alfred Hollins and Zach Reichle will undoubedtly be asked to do more during this period without Rakocevic, as inconsistency has plagued these two throughout the start of their sophomore campaigns.
Hollins (5.7 PPG), has struggled to find his shot through the early portion of the season and in many contests, has been plagued by foul trouble on the defensive end.
Reichle (3.0 PPG) has played mostly erratic minutes through the first six contests.
Regardless of what Tinkle chooses to do to fill the void of Rakocevic, he’ll have to find a way to replace 8.2 points and 4.2 rebounds of statistical production per contest, while the senior works his way back to full health.
The Beavers (5-1) return to action this Saturday (December 1st) in Corvallis against Missouri State.