Senior Shavon Shields was at the Nebraska basketball facility Thursday, and he's made some progress, according to coach Tim Miles. But Shields hasn't yet been cleared to resume physical activity.
Shields suffered a concussion and was diagnosed with a neck strain after that scary fall against Rutgers Saturday, Miles said. Shields didn't travel with the team when it played at Wisconsin Wednesday — but his health is improving.
On Thursday, Shields conducted the baseline cognitive tests as part of Nebraska's concussion protocol. He attended the Huskers' practice. He watched film with the group.
But Shields still has to remain symptom-free during each stage of the recovery process before he's able to play again — from low-stress workouts, to sport-specific skill exercises (shooting, dribbling, jumping, etc.), to full-contact practices.
It's unclear if Shields will be in attendance for Nebraska's home game against Penn State Saturday.
"You just never know how long these things will be," Miles said Friday. "And his welfare is the most important thing."
The status of freshman forward Ed Morrow is still uncertain as well (he didn't practice Thursday). Miles said he has no immediate plans to alter the lineup — freshman Jack McVeigh started in Shields' place Wednesday.
As was proven in the 72-61 defeat to the Badgers, the Huskers missed Shields' talent and presence on the court. Shields is the team's second-leading scorer and top assist man.
Junior guard Andrew White said it was encouraging to see Shields around Thursday. But White knows it's not easy for a competitor like Shields to remain patient through the recovery process, even when the team's athletic trainers are demanding it.
"I know it's tough on him and his family," White said. "But I think the more that he's around, it'll help him. I know that the doctors and the staff are going to do everything they can to get him (back) in a timely fashion. We're just looking forward to having him back."