COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Michael Porter Jr. saga continues.
In the last two games, since being cleared to practice Feb. 22, Porter has warmed up with the team but has not been in uniform.
Porter, the top-ranked player in the 2017 class by Rivals, has not played since Missouri’s Nov. 10 season opener against Iowa State after undergoing back surgery.
Thursday afternoon, in his weekly media availability, Missouri coach Cuonzo Martin said that depending on how Porter feels, he might see playing time Saturday.
But that all depends on how he practices.
“He will practice today. He’ll practice tomorrow, and then we will go from there,” Martin said. “It really comes down to how Mike feels. Then we will go from there.”
Before Porter was cleared to practice, Martin echoed a similar sentiment, that Porter would have to practice before suiting up. Because of Missouri’s two-game road trip, Porter has practiced just twice in the last week.
He was expected to practice Thursday and Friday, marking his first back-to-back practices since the preseason.
Martin said the team’s practice at Vanderbilt helped, but extra reps will advance the process.
“We just want to get the reps under his belt so he can be effective,” he said. “He knows he is not going to be at the level from a conditioning standpoint, but as long as he feels good, and then we will go from there.”
If Porter is available for Saturday’s game against Arkansas, Missouri (19-11, 9-8) will have 10 players available and nine scholarship players.
In Tuesday’s game, Missouri had nine available, but only seven played more than five minutes. Six played more than 15 minutes, while Jordan Barnett, Kassius Robertson and Jordan Geist all played more than 30 minutes. Barnett played every minute Tuesday.
Missouri and Arkansas (21-9, 10-7) will tip off at 5 p.m. at Mizzou Arena.