WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — Purdue women's basketball head coach Sharon Versyp announced that guard Karissa McLaughlin will undergo season-ending ankle surgery in July. The Fort Wayne will take a redshirt year for the 2020-21 season.
Originally scheduled for surgery in early April, McLaughlin, the coaching staff and Purdue athletic training personnel were forced to postpone the procedure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"It was crushing news," Versyp said. "We know it's the right course of treatment for Karissa, but it's still difficult to process. She has an immeasurable impact on our program. We know she will work hard to rehab and get in a position to be ready for next year. In the meantime, Karissa will still be a leader on this team and will find new ways to make an impact off the court."
The two-time All-Big Ten honoree has been a mainstay in the Purdue lineup over the last three years, starting 94 of her 98 career games. She needs seven 3-pointers to overtake Courtney Moses' 240 triples for the career program record. McLaughlin is a 39% shooter from the field and hit 35.8% from distance in her career to average 12.8 points per game.
In addition to her scoring prowess, McLaughlin is just the fifth player in program history to dish out over 100 assists in each of her first three seasons.
"Sitting out this season will be one of the hardest things I've ever had to face in my life," McLaughlin said. "I keep reminding myself that God has a plan and a reason for everything. I've stayed focused on the positives. I am going to do everything I can to be at 100% for next season. I will dedicate all my energy into my new role and offer any support I can to help this team win. I have all the confidence in the world in my teammates and know that we're going to do big things this year."
The 2017 Indiana Miss Basketball was set to lead a veteran squad with a deep senior class featuring Fatou Diagne, Jenelle Grant, Lyndsey Whilby and Tamara Farquhar.
The majority of the Boilermakers returned to campus last week for voluntary workouts. The 2020-21 campaign opens Nov. 11 at Mackey Arena against Western Illinois.