Fernandez eyeing Wednesday return to bench
Moral victories mean little to a squad struggling to claw its way into postseason tournament conversation, but USF's women's basketball team nonetheless hopes to celebrate one Wednesday at Memphis.
An appearance by Coach Jose Fernandez would represent a triumph in itself.
Waylaid by a series of ailments last week, including a recurrence of diverticulitis, Fernandez told the Tampa Bay Times earlier today he hopes to be on the bench for the 8 p.m. tipoff.
"I hope to meet them (Wednesday) for the shootaround if everything goes well today," Fernandez said via text message.
Fernandez, 42, missed Sunday's 79-59 loss at No. 4 Louisville after spending two nights in a local hospital. He said he hadn't been feeling well in the days leading to last Wednesday's 18-point home win against Houston, though a flu test came back negative.
Experiencing abdominal discomfort, he saw the team doctor the night after the Houston victory, and was sent directly to Florida Hospital Tampa.
"We had a recruit in town," Fernandez said. "So I went to see her and her family at the restaurant first, and then went to Florida Hospital."
The hospitalization lasted three days. Diverticulitis, a painful inflammation in the wall of the large intestine, was diagnosed. Fernandez had missed the 2009-10 season opener with the same illness.
He said the area in which he had a hernia removed last April also had become inflamed. Eventually, he developed a fever, nausea and a severe mouth and throat infection as well. He has struggled to sleep, eat or drink.
But if his medications and antibiotics keep doing their respective jobs, Fernandez hopes to return to doing his.
As early as Wednesday.