This much we know: Bonzie Colson will return and start on Senior Night on Wednesday when Pitt comes to town. What we don’t know, is how much Colson will actually play. Notre Dame’s digital media department reported as much over the weekend, but it’s still unclear just how many minutes Colson will log if any other than a ceremonial start to receive a well earned standing ovation.
Here’s what Notre Dame’s Alan Wasielewski over the wekend.
Latest @NDmbb line up news – @rexpflueger will give it a go today. @Bcolson_35 will not play today, but will be in starting lineup regardless of his progress on Monday/Tuesday vs. Pitt. How much he plays vs. Panthers depends on his work early next week.
— @NDmbb Athletic Comms (@NDmbbSID) February 24, 2018
Waiselewski followed that up on Monday with a promising note on Colson’s performance in practice.
Great to see @Bcolson_35 back in 5v5 drills today.
First possession = offensive tip in.
Got a great reaction from the team.
Plan is to start him Wed vs Pitt on Senior Night but playing time is still very very TBD.
— @NDmbb Athletic Comms (@NDmbbSID) February 26, 2018
Will Colson start the game and play til the first whistle and then walk off the court one final time in a Notre Dame uniform or will he play some meaningful minutes in hopes of playing many more on Saturday on the road against #1 ranked UVA and then next week in Brooklyn during the ACC Tournament? We might not know until tomorrow evening shortly after tip off.
What we do know is that Mike Brey and Notre Dame will not force anything with Colson that would risk his future in any way. Brey has been adamant about that since Colson originally went down with the injury in January.
Should Colson hold up well to another day of practice on Tuesday and be able to give it a go on Wednesday for more than a couple of ceremonial minutes, it would be a huge shot in the arm for a team holding on for dear life in its bid to still make the NCAA Tournament.
As noted in our weekly Notre Dame basketball report, the Irish need a win on Wednesday coupled with either an upset of UVA and a pair of wins in Brooklyn, or a win Wednesday and a deep run at Barclays. Neither of those scenarios seem possible with at least some level of involvement from Colson this week.
A win on Wednesday night over a Pitt team that is winless in ACC play this year is very possible even if Colson is just on the court for tip off and then subs out. An upset of UVA of any sort of run in Brooklyn on the hand would almost certainly require a healthy dose of a healthy Colson.