Gophers sophomore guard Amir Coffey will miss the remainder of the season because of right shoulder surgery, coach Richard Pitino announced Saturday.
Coffey, who averages 14 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.3 assists, has been out since tweaking his shoulder late in a Jan. 23 home loss against Northwestern. He missed his 10th game and fifth in a row in Tuesday’s 87-57 loss against Michigan State, and he will have surgery sometime this upcoming week.
The talented 6-foot-8 Hopkins High School product took shots before the Michigan State game and was seen dunking at the Gophers’ practice facility in an Instagram post by senior Nate Mason on Thursday.
Coffey can’t hurt his shoulder any further by playing. But the preseason All-Big Ten selection was still in pain and decided for surgery, which is a six-month recovery.
“It’s a see where is pain tolerance is at and kind of go from there,” Pitino said Tuesday. “It’s a weird injury. It’s his right shoulder. You can see a lefty shooting jump shots and he might not look hurt. So it’s hard to really tell, but he’s a tough kid.”
After a Jan. 3 victory over Illinois, Coffey was diagnosed with a humeral avulsion glenohumeral ligament (HAGL) lesion, which is a ligament tear near the front of the shoulder. His initial timetable for recovery was six to eight weeks, but he returned after five games.
Coffey played against Ohio State in New York City and at home against Northwestern.
He had 15 points, five turnovers and four rebounds in 32 minutes before fouling out against Northwestern. He tweaked his shoulder on a dunk late in the second half.
Coffey is lefthanded, so the injury didn’t affect his shooting arm. He wore heavy tape on his right shoulder his last two games.
The Gophers (14-14, 3-12 Big Ten), who play Monday at Wisconsin, have lost 11 of their past 12 games. They have played without Coffey and junior guard Dupree McBrayer (leg) for 15 games combined. Center Reggie Lynch was suspended the past 12 games and announced Friday he would not seek reinstatement.