Memphis' Witherspoon out five weeks

Published Dec. 10, 2010 12:00 a.m. ET

Memphis will be without its leading scorer for the next five weeks.

Tigers junior forward Wesley Witherspoon, who is averaging 13.0 points and 4.6 rebounds through the first eight games of the season, will have arthroscopic surgery on his right knee on Friday.

"It’s been bothering him since the Northwestern State game,” Memphis coach Josh Pastner told "He hasn’t practiced in 2 ½ weeks.”

Pastner said that an MRI determined surgery is the best course of action.

"It made sense to get it taken care of now,” he said. "So it doesn’t bother him the rest of the year.”

Witherspoon will miss key non-conference games against Georgetown and Tennessee and Pastner is hopeful he’ll return Jan. 15 against Marshall. Memphis is 7-1 after suffering its first loss of the year Tuesday night in New York against Kansas.