McCollum labels injury a ‘blessing in disguise’
by Nicole Auerbach, USA TODAY Sports
Lehigh star and potential first-round draft pick C.J. McCollum has not spoken publicly since he broke his foot in a game against Virginia Commonwealth on Jan. 5.
He underwent successful surgery days later and expected an 8-10 week recovery period. Lehigh lost to VCU but has won all five games since without McCollum, the nation’s leading scorer at the time of his injury.
Lehigh has initially planned a news conference to allow McCollum to speak to reporters, but said McCollum didn’t want to take attention away from the team and simply released the following statement, in which he calls the injury and rehab a “humbling” and “maturing” experience:
“My surgery was a success and Dr. Mark Meyerson was, ‘very pleased with the outcome of the surgery.’ This was great news considering Dr. Meyerson is one of the best foot and ankle surgeons in the world; some even refer to him as the Michael Jordan of foot surgery. I was reluctant to do a press conference or presser because I don’t want to be a distraction or deflect attention that rightfully belongs to my team.
“I am focusing on my academics and being the best supporter I can for my teammates. The focus should be on them and the success we’re having as a program. My rehab is going well and I’m taking this injury in stride and using it to become a better student of the game in all facets. I have grown closer to God and realize that this injury was a blessing in disguise. This has been a very humbling and maturing experience and this adversity will only make me stronger.
“I started pool workouts this week and have begun an extensive upper body lifting regime, along with daily treatment for my foot multiple times per day. Everything is going well and I’ve heard nothing but positive feedback from trainers and team physicians. My teammates have made this transition easy for me by handling business on the court. I will continue to be a positive influence on them helping in every way possible from the sideline. I have all the confidence … [For more on Lehigh star C.J. McCollum labels injury a 'blessing in disguise', click here.]