Crean: Roth wasn’t going to play

Though sophomore guard Matt Roth dressed for the first time since breaking his foot in Puerto Rico in November, Tom Crean said Monday in the Big Ten teleconference that there was no chance he was going to play.

“Him dressing the other day was good for him, it was good for our team,” Crean said. “To have him out there. I wouldn’t have played him, even for a half-court shot, which we joked with him the night before about being in position to do that, but there’s no way we would do that until he’s totally cleared. Hopefully we’ll see more this week. Hopefully he’ll be able to be involved in practice sometime this week.”

The clock, of course, is running for Roth. Crean said earlier this season he would apply for a medical hardship if he was out until February. That’s still up for debate, Crean said.

“It’s really going to be what he can tolerate because he’s really healing pretty well right now,” Crean said. “There’s not a total cut-off date. We’re in that ballpark as we go through the next couple of weeks, and certainly we don’t want to put him out there unless he’s feeling like it’s going to continue to get better and we won’t put him out there until they’ve given us that full go-ahead. He hasn’t practiced yet.”

That means there’s likely no chance he plays Thursday against Purdue as the Hoosiers renew that in-state rivalry. It will be Crean’s first chance as an Indiana coach to host the Boilermakers.

“I think the physicalness of the game, the intensity of it,” Crean said when asked what impressed him about the rivalry. “Certainly it’s one of those things that gets a lot of national attention like a great rivalry should. But the bottom line is what you’ve had is teams that have really come out, and that intensity is something that even if you weren’t in the building, you could really sense it watching it on television or watching it on tape when you were preparing for them when we were at Michigan State. I don’t think there’s any question that it’s one of the great rivalries in college basketball and deservedly so for decade after decade.”

The Boilermakers added point guard Lewis Jackson to the lineup last week after he had missed the entire season with a foot injury.

“He’s a tough kid and he’s a competitor and wants to be in there,” coach Matt Painter said. “He just helps our team quickness, there’s no question that we desperately needed that quickness on both ends of the court.

In other Big Ten notes, Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan said he’s still uncertain about a timeline for a return for forward John Leuer, who has been out with a wrist injury.

“I know people go, ‘Who is he kidding?’ meaning me,” Ryan said. “I’m not kidding when I say ‘I’m not sure.’ But hopefully, it will be before the end of the season. With the history of these type of injuries and what some other athletes have been through on our campus, they are very, very careful with these. And in this day and age, the coaches are not given a whole lot of information other than the basics.”

Minnesota freshman forward Royce White said Monday that he will be leaving the school. White has been charged with three misdemeanor counts of trespassing in an alleged theft of a laptop computer from a Minnesota dormitory. He was trying to negotiate a deal Monday, and when those negotiations didn’t go well, he told reporters he was withdrawing from school.

“I heard that,” Minnesota coach Tubby Smith said. “I assume that if he said that, I guess that’s what he’s going to do. Whatever he decides to do, we certainly wish him the best.”

Smith had allowed White back to practice after the incident was reported, but Smith said he had not expected White to return to the team this season.