College Basketball: Concussions force end of Kersten Magrum’s career
By Tony Baranek firstname.lastname@example.org January 29, 2013 5:58PM
Kersten Magrum set Lincoln-Way East scoring and rebounding records before going to Illinois. The redshirt junior was told she no longer can play college basketball after suffering four concussions with the Fighting Illini. | File photo
Updated: March 2, 2013 7:19AM
Lincoln-Way East graduate Kersten Magrum, the SouthtownStar’s Girls Basketball Player of the Year in the 2008-09 season, was medically disqualified last week by University of Illinois doctors and has ended her collegiate basketball career.
In December, Magrum suffered her fourth concussion while at Illinois and second this season.
“The medical staff knew how much it was hindering me and how much more likely with every one you’re likely to get another,” Magrum said. “The cumulative effects are worse and worse.
“It’s definitely been a love-hate relationship (with basketball) the last couple of years, but it’s so hard to walk away because it’s meant so much, been such a huge part of me.”
Magrum played in 11 games this season, starting seven. In 2011-12, she averaged 11.4 points and 5.7 rebounds per game, earning Academic All-Big Ten honors and being named the Fighting Illini’s Most Courageous Player.
For her career, Magrum averaged 6.5 points and 3.2 rebounds in 66 games (39 starts) over parts of four seasons.
The Mokena resident missed all but three games of what would have been her sophomore season in 2010-11 with a stress fracture in her right foot. She missed nine games, combined, as a redshirt sophomore in 2011-12 with a head injury suffered in a game and a concussion suffered in practice.
Her third concussion was suffered during a preseason practice for her junior campaign. The fourth occurred Dec. 21 during a team practice.
Magrum said she would stay and travel with the team for the duration of the 2012-13 season. A psychology major, she is on schedule to graduate from Illinois this year.
Magrum was Lincoln-Way East’s Female Athlete of the Year in 2008-09, and set school career marks for scoring (1,907 points) and rebounding (743).