JF

Not good…not good at all. Anyone still complaining about the weak nonconference schedule?

Gophers forward Damian Johnson will miss 4 to 6 weeks with a broken left hand, according to Gophers spokesman Matt Slieter. Johnson broke the hand in practice Monday, Slieter said. That means Johnson could make his return as early as mid-November or early December. Minnesota’s ACC/Big Ten matchup against Virginia is six weeks from today.

For the Gophers, losing Johnson for up to six week is not a huge blow because they have such an easy nonconference schedule. Their reserves could beat Concordia St. Paul, Eastern Washington and Georgia State. The bigger question is how will Johnson come back? And will the hand bother him at all this season? The Gophers need Johnson to be 100 percent heading into the team’s Big Ten schedule.

I reported earlier that Damian Johnson injured his fingers recently, but that the injury was not major. Sources close to the program told me that it wasn’t a major injury.

According to Gophers spokesman Matt Slieter, however, Johnson will have surgery today on his hand, and the university is going to release information about it in a release later today. He didn’t “break” his fingers, Slieter said. “Although he didn’t break his fingers, he’s having surgery today. I’ll have something put out by the end of the day. It will say what kind of surgery he had and the timeline that we’re looking for.”