Mississippi State guard Nick Weatherspoon is conscious and has movement in his extremities after suffering a scary upper-body injury in the Bulldogs’ loss to Tennessee in the SEC Tournament quarterfinal.
The video of the play is below, though viewer discretion is advised.
Miss St guard Nick Weatherspoon went down hard, remained on the ground and then was hit by players when the play came back down the court… pic.twitter.com/J5u9Wqvigl
— Rob Lopez (@r0bato) March 10, 2018
If you didn’t watch the clip, it unfolded as such: Weatherspoon went up for a layup in transition but couldn’t finish through contact and went down hard underneath the basket. He remained on the ground as play continued. Tennessee brought the ball the other way but lost it, and off went Mississippi State back down the court, heading toward Weatherspoon, who remained down on the floor. Weatherspoon’s brother, Quinndary, went up for a layup but was denied at the rim by Tennessee’s Kyle Alexander. Both Quinndary Weatherspoon and Kyle Alexander came down on Nick Weatherspoon, and, as seen in the photo above, Alexander’s right foot landed on Nick Weatherspoon’s chest/neck/head area. Mississippi State’s Abdul Ado finished a put-back dunk, and then play was finally stopped.
Nick Weatherspoon remained down for several minutes as Quinndary stood near his younger brother. Eventually both teams huddled around Weatherspoon as he was put on a stretcher.
Both teams surrounding Nick Weatherspoon after they got him up on stretcher. pic.twitter.com/jqt3HGimz8
— Hugh Kellenberger (@HKellenbergerCL) March 10, 2018
He was eventually put in a neck brace, stretchered off and taken to the hospital.
Following the game, Mississippi State head coach Ben Howland opened his press conference with an update on his freshman guard:
“We’re praying that Nick Weatherspoon is going to be okay. We had a talk with our athletic director, Bo Hemphill, about 15 minutes ago that he’s moving his extremities. He’s moving everything. He’s conscious. They’re performing a CAT scan on him. As soon as we’re done with the media obligations, Q and I will head over to the hospital where he’s being kept.”
Tennessee head coach Rick Barnes also used his opening statement to address the scary injury:
First and foremost, Nick Weatherspoon is on our minds tonight.
Hearing encouraging news from @HailStateMBK, but we're still sending prayers up.
— Tennessee Basketball (@Vol_Hoops) March 10, 2018
Later in the night, the Mississippi State Twitter page provided an encouraging update from the hospital.
— MSU Men's Basketball (@HailStateMBK) March 10, 2018
The SEC also released a statement later Friday night.
— Southeastern Conference (@SEC) March 10, 2018