The Jayhawks arrived in St. Louis on Wednesday and as expected, Self confirmed that Joel Embiid will not play in the NCAA tournament this weekend.
“He’s not going to play,” Self told the media. “I’m not saying there couldn’t be a miraculous act occur, but we’re certainly not planning on that or expecting that.”
Kansas plays Eastern Kentucky on Friday at 3:10 pm and if they advance, they will play the winner of Stanford-New Mexico. There was speculation that given a chance, Embiid might play during the Sunday game. However, Self did say that Embiid is close to returning.
“He’s not far away from being out there in some form or fashion, but probably not contact.”
While Embiid hasn’t practiced yet, he has participated in shootarounds. Last week, he was taking shots at the Sprint Center during a shootaround on Wednesday.
“He’s doing really well,” Self said. “We’ve told him that we were not going to put him on the practice floor until he does really, really well in rehab. And that’s what the doctors told us, and that’s what we were going to do all along.