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Jay Wright: Too early to plan on not having Phil Booth for entire year

RICH GRAESSLE/ICON SPORTSWIRE

Phil Booth hasn’t played for Villanova since November due to a knee injury, but Jay Wright said it’s too premature for the Wildcats to plan like they won’t have him back this season.

“We’re still trying to get to the point where he is pain free,” Wright told FanRag Sports on Wednesday. “We know if it gets to a certain point that we’ll have to make that decision.”

Booth would apply for a medical red shirt if he did not return this season. The junior scored 20 points in Villanova’s win in over the North Carolina Tar Heels last April in the national title game.

A 6-3 guard out of Baltimore, Maryland, Booth has averaged 5.7 points and 1.7 rebounds over 24 minutes in the three games that he has appeared in for the Wildcats during the 2016-17 season. He made three spot-starts last season, including appearances in all 40 games.

The Wildcats are 16-1 following Tuesday night’s 79-54 win over Xavier. Villanova will next play the St. John’s Red Storm on Jan. 14. That Big East game is scheduled to tip at noon and will air on Fox Sports 1. The Red Storm are currently 8-10 on the season.

Jon Rothstein has been a college basketball insider for CBS Sports since 2010 and is the lead college basketball columnist for the FanRag Sports Network. He is also the host of the College Hoops Today Podcast via Compass Media Networks, which is available via iTunes. Rothstein is also a regular in-studio correspondent for both WFAN and CBS Sports Radio. He currently lives in Manhattan.

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