The Kansas City Star

KU notebook: Jayhawks' Embiid could miss some time

Updated: 2014-02-11T15:59:29Z

By RUSTIN DODD

The Kansas City Star

— Kansas freshman center Joel Embiid limped out of Bramlage Coliseum with an icepack on his left leg and soreness in his back. He had played just 18 minutes in KU’s loss to K-State, and it could be his last court time for a while.

KU coach Bill Self said Embiid needs some time off after suffering a sprained knee and a back injury over the last few weeks.

“Jo is beat up,” Self said. “He’s beat up. I’m not going to make one excuse for him, because if you’re out there you have to (perform), but certainly he’s going to get some time off.”

Will Embiid miss Saturday’s home game against TCU? Self isn’t ready to say.

“I don’t know,” Self said. “We’re going to re-evaluate. We’ve known since last week that we were just going to try to get through (K-State on Monday). There’s nothing structurally that he’s dealing with, but he’s beat up, obviously.

“His body has taken a toll here the last two or three weeks.”

• While freshmen Andrew Wiggins and Embiid get many of the headlines for KU, K-State coach Bruce Weber said he might vote for sophomore Perry Ellis for player of the year in the Big 12.

“That dude is a winner,” Weber said, “and he’s tough to stop.”

Two days after Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart shoved a Texas Tech fan for shouting some unsettling words at him late in a game at United Spirit Arena, Kansas State reminded its fans to stay respectful of opposing players.

School officials placed a note on the seats of season-ticket holders thanking them for their support and reminding them of NCAA rules for fan conduct.

The note read in part: “As a reminder, NCAA Rule 10-2.8 states that, ‘When the misconduct of a follower(s) is extreme or excessive, such behavior may be penalized by the official requesting home/contest management to eject from the premises the team follower(s) involved in the misbehavior.’ ”

• In the aftermath of the Marcus Smart fan incident at Texas Tech on Saturday, Kansas coach Bill Self said he rarely speaks to his team about how to handle fans’ taunts or specific arenas.

“We don’t talk about the seating arrangement or how close the fans are,” Self said Monday on the Big 12 coaches’ teleconference. “But the whole thing, you don’t communicate with fans, and it’s water off your back.”

Smart, the reigning Big 12 player of the year, pushed a Texas Tech fan after barreling into the stands in the final seconds of Saturday night’s game in Lubbock. The fan, a Texas Tech supporter named Jeff Orr, later said he called Smart a “piece of crap” but denied using any racially charged language.

“The thing that’s always concerned me the most is the storming of the court,” Self said. “You have a bumping that could escalate into something else. But I’ve never addressed anything with my team.”

• Monday’s matchup was the 279th in the Sunflower Showdown, a series dating back to 1907. Kansas leads 187-92 lead in the series.

• The Jayhawks had won 11 straight on ESPN’s Big Monday before the loss. The last Big Monday loss for Kansas came at Bramlage Coliseum on Feb. 14, 2011.

First half

Key play: D.J. Johnson disrupted two shots on the Jayhawks’ final possession, preventing Perry Ellis and Brannen Greene from scoring, to keep it tied at 29-29.

Key stat: K-State made 50 percent of its three-pointers.

Second Half

Key play: Johnson hit a layup off a pick-and-roll play that put K-State ahead 66-57.

Key stat: Kansas made one of six three-pointers.

| Rustin Dodd, rdodd@kcstar.com

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