Noel has cast removed, begins practicing

Sophomore forward David Noel had the cast removed from his injured right thumb on Tuesday, Dec. 9 and began practicing with the Tar Heels on a limited basis (wearing a heavy splint) on Dec. 10.

UNC doctors will continue to monitor Noel's progress before determining when the Durham, N.C., native can return to game action.

Noel was expected to miss 6-8 weeks of action due to a torn ligament in his right thumb, an injury which occurred in practice on Tuesday, Nov. 4.

Noel underwent surgery on Nov. 12 to repair the torn ligament. Last year, the Durham, N.C., native played in all 35 games and averaged 5.9 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. He had career-bests of 21 points and 12 rebounds against DePaul in the first round of the NIT.

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