KU coach rules Joel Embiid out of Saturday’s game vs. TCU

02/14/2014 7:50 PM

02/14/2014 7:50 PM

Kansas coach Bill Self said on Friday afternoon that freshman center Joel Embiid will not play Saturday against TCU. Embiid has not practiced since Monday’s overtime loss at K-State, Self said.

Self is hopeful that Embiid would be ready to practice on Sunday.

“His back has gotten a lot better,” Self said, “but it’s still not where the doctors feel it needs to be.”

Self said Thursday that he wanted to see if Embiid could practice on Friday before making a decision on his status for Saturday.

Embiid is still recovering from a knee sprain suffered in late January and a back injury suffered in the second half against West Virginia on Feb. 8. The injuries have added up, and Self wanted to give Embiid some “time off” to rest and get healthy.

After the entire team took Tuesday off, Embiid suited up for practice Wednesday but didn’t take part.

Embiid is averaging 10.7 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks in 22 minutes per game. But his production has taken a hit since suffering the initial knee injury; he’s averaging just is averaging 8.8 points and 9.2 rebounds in his last five games.

“He’s not exploding,” Self said on Thursday. “He’s looking around to see if he’s going to get hit as opposed to initiating contact because he’s sore and hurts in different areas, and so, yeah, I think there’s certainly some signs that he hasn’t been himself.”

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