University of Miami incoming freshman guard Lonnie Walker, one of the most highly-touted recruits in the program’s history, tore the meniscus in his right knee at practice on Tuesday. He will undergo surgery at UHealth Sports Medicine Institute later this week.
There is no timetable for his return.
“Lonnie suffered an injury in practice this morning,” UM coach Jim Larrañaga said. “The timeframe for his return will be determined after the surgery.”
Walker, a 6-4 shooting guard from Reading, Pa., was a 2017 McDonald’s All-American and Jordan Brand Classic All-American. He was projected by many NBA scouts to be a first-round pick in the 2018 draft.
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“Lonnie is a high-octane open court player,” Larrañaga said recently. “Great at taking the ball to the basket, and scoring in a variety of ways – layups, dunks, floaters, pull-up jumpers, and also a three-point shooter.”
Larrañaga was looking forward to working with Walker on improving his defense.
“One of the areas he’s going to need to work on, to prove to NBA scouts he deserves to be drafted after one year of college, is defense,” Larrañaga said. “In Lonnie’s case, the first thing we will address with him is, `How do you become a lockdown defender?’ Because at your size, you’re going to play against some of the best players in the world who are 6-5, 6-6, who have been in the NBA for five, seven, 12 years, guys like Dwyane Wade. Russell Westbrook. Can you guard a guy like that? Because if you can’t, it’s very hard to get playing time in the NBA.”
Walker led Reading High to its first state championship in 2016.