Tommy LaGarde is out, Walter Davis is in and Mike Phillips is questionable.
Injuries caused immeasurable uncertainty in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season and continue on the eve of the NCAA East Regional semifinals at the University of Maryland's Cole Field House on Thursday.
For North Carolina, 6-foot-10 center LaGarde reinjured his left knee in practice Monday and will undergo surgery soon, Davis, 6-foot-5 forward who missed the Heels' 69-66 Victory ever Purdue with a broken right index finger, has resumed practice and is expected to play against Notre Dame at 8:15 p.m.
Kentucky officials reported that the 6-10 Phillips, bulky center, is questionable for the 6:05 p.m. opener against Virginia Military Institute with a sprained right wrist.
Phillips aggravated the original injury, suffered March 5, in practice Monday. The wrist has been placed in a cast and a Kentucky spokesman said Phillips did not practice yesterday and won't today. The spokesman lists him as questionable, although coach Joe Hall said he expects Phillips to be ready.
Phillips is one of the Wildcats' two 6-10 hulks who start and make the Wildcats one of the nation's most physical teams. If Phillips can't play, Hall will use James Lee, 6-5, 230-pound junior, and move 6-10 Rick Robey to center.
Lee is the No. 6 man, with more playing time (692 minutes to 559) than Phillips and statistics comparable to his bigger teammate -- 9.8 points and 5.2 rebounds per game against Phillips' 12.3 points and 6.6 rebounds.
The Ides of March brought good news for VMI. Point-guard Kelly Lombard, who suffered a sprained right ankle two days before the Keydets' 73-66 first-round triumph over Duquesne, is back at full speed and the prospect of a measles epidemic apparently has passed.
Steve Wagner, a freshman and Lombard's backup, had the measles last week. He has recovered and no one else on the basketball team has shown signs of contacting the disease. Six members of the football team are confined to the VMI infirmary with them. The football team begins spring practice next week.
Most schools take NCAA playoffs in stride. Gen. Richard Irby, VMI superintendent, canceled afternoon classes Thursday, all classes Friday and has ordered Saturday classes off, if the Keydets upset Kentucky.
Of VMI's 1,271 cadets 580 paid for tickets to College Park. But VMI granted only 370 of its 750-ticket allottment to the students.
Because tickets for the 14,500-seat Cole Field House are scarce VMI athletic director Tom Joynes and his North Carolina counterpart, Bill Cobey Jr. have worked out an arrangement for Saturday's final. Carolina has first call on VMI student tickets for the 12:15 p.m. regional final if VMI loses, and vice versa.
The word out of Philadelphia is that Eugene Banks of West Philadelphia High School is wavering on his announced intention of attending Duke. Banks, 6-foot-7 power forward and perhaps the best high-school prospect in the country, will be playing in the Knights of Columbus tournament this weekend at the D.C. Armory.
It couldn't be more convenient for Digger Phelps, the Notre Dame coach who is pursuing Banks. A Philadelphia paper reported yesterday that Banks is now considering Notre Dame and UCLA. Notre Dame played in Banks' backyard last week, beating Hofstra in a first-round game at Philadelphia.