Team's leading scorer out indefinitely

Updated: January 22, 2004, 2:18 PM ET

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Earnest Shelton, Alabama's leading scorer, is out indefinitely with a knee injury suffered in Wednesday's game against Georgia, the school announced Thursday.

Shelton, a junior guard, sprained his right MCL late in the first half of a 45-42 victory over the Bulldogs. He attempted to play in the second half and was quickly pulled from the game.

"I think it really hurts us," Alabama coach Mark Gottfried said. "We don't know how long it's going to be. Any team that loses their leading scorer, obviously it makes things a lot more difficult for you."

Shelton is averaging 15.5 points and has had five games of 20 points or more.

Senior Emmett Thomas is projected to move into the starting lineup for Alabama (11-4, 3-1 SEC West), which plays at Mississippi on Saturday.