LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -Kentucky will be without its top outside shooter for at least a month after guard Jodie Meeks was diagnosed with a stress fracture.
Meeks suffered the injury to his pelvic area when he fell to the ground during an exhibition game against Seattle. He started but was ineffective in two regular-season games after that.
``If you've ever had an abdominal muscle pull or anything in the core area, it's tough,'' coach Billy Gillispie said Wednesday. ``Sometimes you can't even move your body a particular way, much less try to practice.''
Gillispie said Meeks is expected to miss four to six weeks. The injury is a huge blow to the Wildcats, who already are without point guard Derrick Jasper, still recovering from offseason knee surgery.
With the two guards out, senior Joe Crawford - a starter last year under former coach Tubby Smith - could return to the lineup, although Gillispie didn't commit to that. Freshman Alex Legion also figures to get more playing time.
Last year, Meeks was usually the first player off the bench for Smith, often providing a spark from 3-point range. He averaged 22 minutes and nine points, and reached double-digit scoring 16 times.
He averaged a team-leading 22.5 points in exhibition wins over Pikeville and Seattle this season before struggling in the regular season, averaging seven points and shooting just 1-of-6 from 3-point range.
Kentucky hosts Liberty next Wednesday in its first game since it was upset by Gardner-Webb last week.
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