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NC State point guard Markell Johnson still limited in practice

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Johnson sounds doubtful for State’s game at Louisville.

NCAA Basketball: N.C. State at Miami-Florida Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

NC State head coach Kevin Keatts provided a brief injury update on Markell Johnson this afternoon, and if you’re looking for encouraging news, this ain’t it. Keatts said that Johnson could theoretically be back on Thursday night but also could be sidelined for weeks.

That’s a bit vague, but perhaps most telling is the fact that Johnson remains limited in practice and isn’t participating in any drills that involve contact. So he’s definitely not scrimmaging with the team right now. He’s participating in practice shootarounds, but it sounds like that’s pretty much all he’s allowed to do. That does not sound like a guy who’ll be ready to go in a couple days, but I’d be happy to be wrong about that.

Keatts added that Johnson won’t play until he’s ready both physically and mentally. It’s been 10 days since Markell suffered a lower back (bone bruise?) injury after falling hard to the floor in the first half against Pittsburgh. State badly needs him back in the fold no later than next week.