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Kansas stars Kevin McCullar, Hunter Dickinson to miss Big 12 Tournament due to injury issues

NCAA Basketball: Kansas at Indiana
USATSI

No.16 Kansas will be without Kevin McCullar Jr. and Hunter Dickinson for the Big 12 Tournament, coach Bill Self said Monday on the “Hawk Talk” radio show. Both players are expected to be available for the NCAA Tournament, but KU is taking a cautious approach by holding the banged up stars out this week.

Dickinson left Saturday’s loss at Houston in obvious pain after suffering a dislocated shoulder, while McCullar has been dealing with a nagging bone bruise that has limited his availability during conference play. All signs point to both being available for the Big Dance. Self said the results of an MRI on Dickinson’s shoulder were positive and that he “did not tear it.”

“The good news is he should be practicing full speed by the start of next week so he’ll be available to us with the NCAA Tournament,” Self said. “And not only available but he should be fine. I mean, he’ll be conditioning and doing non-contact basketball stuff by Thursday or Friday.”

McCullar’s injury has been a persistent issue for weeks as he’s fluctuated in and out of the lineup while managing discomfort.

“Our goal for Kevin is very similar to Hunter in that non-contact stuff and then by Monday be practicing and doing that so that’s what we’re hopeful for,” Self said

Both players were named to the Al-Big 12 First Team this week. Dickinson is averaging 18 points, 10.8 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game while shooting 55% from the floor. McCullar is averaging 18.3 points, 6 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game on 45.4% shooting.

The No. 6 seed Jayhawks are set to begin play Wednesday night against the winner of Tuesday’s game between No. 11 seed Cincinnati and No. 14 seed West Virginia. They are projected as a No. 3 seed for the NCAA Tournament in Jerry Palm’s Bracketology. With Kansas missing the duo, it could make No. 3 seed Baylor’s path to the semifinals more manageable. The Bears open play Thursday against either Kansas, Cincinnati or West Virginia.

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