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Curtis Washington shelved for 2011-12 CBB season after tearing labrum

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The USC Trojans' front court depth took a major blow on Monday with the news that sophomore forward-center Curtis Washington will likely miss the entire 2011-12 college basketball season because of injury.

Washington, who appeared in three games for the Trojans as a freshman, suffered a tear in his left labrum, an injury that will likely require surgery and force him to redshirt the upcoming season.

While the 6-foot-10, 245-pound forward played sparingly in 2010-11, he was expected to see increased playing time with the departures of center Nikola Vucevic and power forward Alex Stepheson.

Coach Kevin O'Neill is now faced with the prospect of having just two true front court players, forward-center Dewayne Dedmon and center James Blasczyk, at his disposal next season.

Dedmon has received strong reviews for his body of work this summer and Blasczyk offers legitimate size at center (7-foot-1, 260-pounds), but both players are a year removed from seeing any actual game action.

The injury to Washington may force O'Neill to on a combination of guard-heavy lineups and possibly rolling the dice on sophomore small forward's Evan Smith and Garrett Jackson.

© 2011 Neal J. Leitereg -- All Rights Reserved

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