PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 17: Jared Sullinger #0 of the Ohio State Buckeyes celebrates on the bench late in the first half against the Gonzaga Bulldogs during the third round of the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Consol Energy Center on March 17, 2012 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Sullinger's balky back was red-flagged by NBA doctors, according to a report.
Ohio State center Jared Sullinger was one of the best recruits in college basketball in 2009-10, one of the best freshmen in college basketball in 2010-11, and one of the better sophomores in college basketball in 2011-12. But Sullinger struggled through injuries in his second season in Columbus, and now the specter of those ailments — specifically, Sullinger's balky back — is being raised in his journey through the 2012 NBA Draft process, according to ESPN's Chad Ford.
Ford writes that multiple team sources have told him Sullinger's back was medically red flagged by NBA doctors after he underwent testing at the NBA Draft Combine, likely meaning that teams will think twice about taking him.
Sullinger's father, however, explained that Sullinger is aware of the issue, and working to remedy it.
"He had a bulging area that was due to his hamstring and quads being so tight," Satch Sullinger told ESPN.com senior college basketball writer Andy Katz in a phone call Monday afternoon. "It pulled on his hip flexor and he's been taking care of it to loosen it. You can call it a red flag if you want. But it's tight hamstring and tight quads. He's been to doctors, he's doing yoga and deep tissue massage. The flexibility is helping take the pressure off the area."
Currently, in Sam Amick's mock draft at SI.com, Sullinger is predicted to go 10th to the New Orleans Hornets.
For more on Sullinger's college career, visit Land-Grant Holyland.