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Sports >  NCAA basketball

Notre Dame, Texas A&M have both battled injury bug en route to Sweet 16 showdown

Texas A&M Coach Gary Blair talks to the media before practice Friday, Mar. 23, 2018 at the Spokane Arena, the site of the NCAA Tournament Women's Sweet 16, which begins play Saturday. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
Texas A&M Coach Gary Blair talks to the media before practice Friday, Mar. 23, 2018 at the Spokane Arena, the site of the NCAA Tournament Women's Sweet 16, which begins play Saturday. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
By Greg Lee For The Spokesman-Review

Notre Dame’s injuries have been well chronicled this season.

With just seven healthy scholarship players, coach Muffet McGraw has changed her approach to practices.

“We definitely practiced shorter – tried to be intense, try to go for an hour and 10 minutes,” she said. “Any time somebody was in a collision, we’d panic a little bit. After practice, when somebody would say how was practice, we would say nobody got hurt, it was a great day.”

Texas A&M coach GAry Blair said his team has also dealt with a short bench.

“People talk about Notre Dame’s four ACLs, but I’ve got four kids out, too, that nobody has ever written a story about,” Blair said. “I have two kids that redshirted because of injuries. Then I have two McDonald’s All-Americans sitting out because of the one-year transfer (rule). I have four kids out as well.”

Blair applauded McGraw for how she’s dealt with adversity.

“Muffet has done a good job of managing a short bench,” he said. “It’s a shame for her, four ACLs. That’s just unheard of. But they’ve overcome it. They’re playing well.”

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