Missouri freshman Michael Porter Jr. set to play in SEC Tournament

Mar 3 2018 Columbia MO USA Missouri Tigers forward Michael Porter Jr. warms up before the game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Mizzou Arena. Mandatory Credit Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Missouri is expecting star freshman Michael Porter Jr.to play Thursday when the Tigers will play their first game of the SEC Tournament against the victor of Wednesday's Georgia-Vanderbilt contest.

The 6-foot-10 Porter, the top prep prospect in the country last season, played in only two minutes of the Tigers' season opener before he was injured.

Porter's return to the floor on Thursday will come in the second game of the afternoon session.

Porter will not start Thursday's matchup with the Georgia-Vanderbilt victor and Martin said he'd be surprised if the freshman plays 30 minutes according to ESPN's Alex Scarborough.

"He could play 20-25 minutes", Martin said, per ESPN.

Without Porter, Missouri went 20-11 during the regular-season slate, putting themselves in position for an NCAA Tournament berth. It was about how he felt...for me it was always Mike's decision to play or not play.

Last month, his doctor cleared him to return to all basketball related activities.

Porter has the ability to score at all three levels and if he proves his back is 100 percent healthy, he automatically will be in the conversation to be the No. 1 overall pick along with Deandre Ayton and Luka Doncic.

Mizzou plays the victor of Wednesday's Georgia/Vanderbilt game in St. Louis.

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