USC junior point guard Julian Jacobs said after practice Wednesday that he would try to play in the Trojans’ Thursday night matchup with Arizona State.
Jacobs did not practice because of a left ankle injury he re-aggravated during the Trojans’ last game, an 87-85 loss to Washington. He watched the end of today’s afternoon session from the sideline in his socks with a protective boot nearby.
“It’s getting better,” Jacobs said as he walked to the locker room after practice in no apparent discomfort. “I’m going to try to play tomorrow night.”
After missing three games in December because of a left ankle sprain, Jacobs returned on Jan. 1 against Washington State. He scored 12 points on five-of-nine shooting in 30 minutes. Two days later at Washington, Jacobs was having the best game of his career when he landed on the foot of USC forward Nikola Jovanovic’s foot early in the second half and rolled his left ankle again.
Jacobs scored 15 points on seven-for-nine shooting with three rebounds and three assists in 18 minutes prior to the injury. The Trojans led by 18 points at the time and soon pushed it to 22 points. But without Jacobs, they struggled to control the tempo and frequently gave the ball away, amassing 21 turnovers in the game, allowing the Huskies to storm back for the win.
“Julian is playing at a very high level,” USC Coach Andy Enfield said. “He’s leading the league in assists and Jordan [McLaughlin] is second and when they’re in the game together, we’re hard to guard.”
Enfield said Jacobs’ status will be a day-to-day decision. He expects other players to step up if he is unable to participate on Thursday.
“We’ve played three games without him already. When you have a teammate that’s injured, everyone else has to increase their responsibility.
“It’s pretty simple. They know what they have to do.”