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'Definitive answer' on Caroline Ducharme's status expected next week

The junior has been out since November.

Photo: Ian Bethune

Caroline Ducharme has been out indefinitely since November while dealing with the effects of numerous head injuries and on Saturday, Geno Auriemma provided the first real update on her status since she’s been sidelined.

“She's constantly being evaluated all the time. Every day, almost,” he said after UConn’s win over DePaul. “There's some stuff going on this week so I would say by early next week, we should have a definitive answer to that question (about whether or not she’ll return).”

Ducharme played in the Huskies’ first four games of the year but came down with neck spasms when the team’s flight to the Cayman Islands experienced rough turbulence. She hasn’t played since then.

“Flying to a game and we're bouncing around, then you get off the plane and everything hurts, everything's bad. I feel terrible for the kid,” Auriemma said at the time.

Ducharme should qualify for a medical redshirt if she doesn’t play the remainder of the season. UConn has not indicated whether there’s a chance she will return to action. If she gets one, she’d have two seasons of eligibility remaining after the current campaign.

Since taking her leave of absence, Ducharme hasn’t been with the team at games — at least publicly. That changed on Saturday when she came out onto the court during warmups, though she departed before the contest began.

Ducharme has a lengthy history of head injuries. She missed five games as a freshman in 2021-22 after contact to the head in multiple games then sat out the season opener in 2022-23 due to neck stiffness. Just after the new year, Ducharme suffered a concussion in practice and was sidelined for the next 13 contests. During the team’s trip to Europe, she played just two games after being hit in the head in each of those contests.

Aubrey Griffin update

Aubrey Griffin underwent surgery to repair her torn ACL last Monday, according to associate head coach Chris Dailey’s postgame radio interview.

“She’s doing good,” the coach said.

Despite being on crutches, Griffin was present at UConn’s game on Saturday. She sat behind the bench but still got in on the celebrations.

Griffin tore her ACL in the Huskies’ win at Creighton on Jan. 3. She has one season of eligibility remaining but there’s no word yet whether she’ll use it.


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