Herb Jones, the defensive leader of the University of Alabama basketball team, will be sidelined indefinitely after undergoing surgery for a fractured left wrist on Saturday per sources familiar with the situation.

 Jones, a 6-foot-7 junior from Greensboro, had started 19 of 20 games for the Crimson Tide despite suffering a hyperextended elbow in the opening game of the year against Penn. That injury kept Jones out for one game before he returned to the lineup. There is no immediate timetable for Jones’ return from the wrist injury although it is possible he could return to the Crimson Tide lineup this season.

 The injury resulted from a hard fall early in the Crimson Tide’s 90-76 loss at LSU on Wednesday. Jones, attempting to catch a lob pass, appeared to be knocked off balance and fell hard to the floor. He left the game and was taken briefly to the Crimson Tide locker room but returned to the floor and played 33 minutes in that game. A further examination upon the team’s return to Tuscaloosa revealed the fracture.

The team’s No. 4 scorer at 9.9 points per game, Jones also averages 6.4 rebounds per contest and is considered one of the SEC’s best defensive players. He also leads all SEC players in assist/turnover ratio in SEC play, with 21 assists to just seven turnovers in league play.

 Alabama coach Nate Oats mentioned Jones’ toughness in his Friday press conference.

 “If you looked at our blue collar board (after the LSU game), I think we were up around 80 points and Herb had over 30 of them himself. We’ve got to get the rest of the guys to get their numbers up. We know Herb’s going to take charges. We know Herb is going to get deflections, loose balls, rebounds. We’ve got to get everybody else doing the same thing.”


Reach Cecil Hurt at cecil@tidesports.com or via Twitter @cecilhurt