Dwight Coleby, a transfer big man at Kansas, will miss out on a season of practice time after tearing the ACL in his left knee, KU men’s basketball coach Bill Self announced Wednesday.
Coleby, a 6-foot-9 junior, came to KU this summer after spending his first two seasons at Mississippi. He was set to sit out the 2015-2016 season anyway, in accordance with NCAA transfer rules, but now he will lose a year of daily workouts with the Kansas team. The injury, Self said, came last Friday during a “light team workout.”
“It was a noncontact injury that was unfortunate for him, particularly because he came here this year to practice against our guys and get better,” Self said. “Even though it is a setback for him, through hard work, he’ll come back and he’ll be stronger than he ever has been by this time next year.”
Coleby is set have surgery on the ACL during the week of Oct. 11, Self said, which should allow for the swelling to go down before the operation.
Coleby, who was born in Nassau, Bahamas, averaged 5.4 points and 4.8 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per game during his sophomore season at Mississippi. While Coleby was set to be a practice player in 2015-2016, he could take on a significant role as a junior. At the moment, the Jayhawks are set to lose senior forwards Perry Ellis, Jamari Traylor and Hunter Mickelson after this season. Freshman big man Cheick Diallo also profiles as a one-and-done prospect.
“This is my first knee injury, and I will do everything I can to get back to 100 percent,” Coleby said. “I have had great support from everyone since this happened and look forward to getting back as soon as possible.”
▪ Self, meanwhile, continues to wait on the NCAA Eligibility Center for word on Diallo, who has not been officially cleared for the 2015-2016 season. Self remains hopeful that Diallo will be available this season, but his staff is planning for all scenarios.
“We’re not going to change how we play,” Self said in an interview with CBS Sports on Wednesday. “Although there’s no guarantees and everyone is doing their part in terms of looking into it, I believe that we’ll play with him (Diallo). So we’re going to prepare like that.
“That doesn’t mean that we’re going to have him, but sometimes what I believe is also what I hope. I think we’ll play the same way with or without Cheick.”