Saint Louis dodges bullet on serious injury

Saint Louis guard Kwamain Mitchell's 2010-11 season was a lost one. Legal issues landed him in hot water with the school, and after being readmitted and serving a suspension, it became so late in the year that he simply redshirted. The Billikens went on to win only 12 games without their leading scorer.

So it was with a sigh of relief that the back injury Mitchell suffered on Friday did not appear to be a serious one after he fell backward into metal bleachers. He spent Friday night in a hospital in Ottawa and the exhibition game against Carleton University was called off with 3:13 left. Doctors found no structural or bone damage on Mitchell, who was scheduled to fly back from the preseason tour of Canada with the team on Sunday.

Mitchell, who as a sophomore led the Billikens by averaging 15.9 points, figures to be an important part of a team that hopes to improve on its tied-for-10th finish in the A-10.

Saint Louis will have a chance to make some noise in the 76 Classic, going up against Boston College in the first round. The Billikens will also play at New Mexico to start a home-and-home series, giving coach Rick Majerus an opportunity to go back to The Pit.

Majerus also had his own health issue before the trip when he underwent a heart procedure, but seemed to be having a good time in Canada.

"I love Canadians," he told Western Ontario's team website. "They're so friendly. Since I've been here, I've always been asked 'what can we do for you? Can I get you anything?' That's why I always love coming to Canada."

Aside from the injury, Mitchell enjoyed himself, along with the rest of the team as can been seen after he was handed a flip cam to document the trip.