IU basketball coach Mike Woodson was asked on Friday how the program is handling the arrest of his star freshman Mackenzie Mgbako that occurred last weekend.
He was straightforward and matter-of-fact in his response. Punishment by Indiana, if there was any, has already occurred.
The 6-foot-8 Mgbako will play on Sunday when the Hoosiers face the University of Indianapolis in an exhibition game.
“He will be playing, he’s been practicing, and all that’s behind us,” Woodson said via Zoom. “We’ve got to move forward.”
Mgbako was formally charged Thursday with a misdemeanor for trespassing in connection with an incident at a Taco Bell parking in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Woodson referred to Mgbako as one of his most consistent players at practice this fall.
“Mackenzie has been pretty solid,” he said.
While Mgbako is playing on Sunday (1 p.m. ET, BTN Plus), one Hoosier will be out for sure, and another is unlikely to suit up.
Freshman guard Jakai Newton had offseason surgery and isn’t expected to play anytime soon, if at all this season.
Fellow Georgia product Kaleb Banks is dealing with a groin issue, and his status for Sunday is uncertain. Based on his comments, Woodson appears to be leaning towards taking a cautious approach with the sophomore forward.
Banks and Newton are the only two IU players currently dealing with injuries of any significance, Woodson says.
“Banks could play if I wanted to play him, but I’m just — this groin thing, I’ve dealt with players that had groin pulls, and those and calf pulls, things like that is nagging, and if you don’t watch it closely and rehab right, it could be a problem all season,” Woodson said.
“I’m going to need Kaleb Banks, so we might not play him on Sunday for sure.”
For complete coverage of IU basketball, GO HERE.
The Daily Hoosier –“Where Indiana fans assemble when they’re not at Assembly”