Kansas sophomore and backup point guard Bobby Pettiford and senior combo guard Kevin McCullar both sat out Monday night’s 87-55 victory over Texas Southern at Allen Fieldhouse.
They both suffered injuries in the Jayhawks’ 64-50 title game loss to Tennessee on Friday night at the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas.
Pettiford, who sustained a strained hamstring, figures to miss a bit more time than McCullar (groin strain).
KU coach Bill Self said McCullar could conceivably play in Thursday night’s game against Seton Hall (8 p.m., Allen Fieldhouse), while Pettiford has been ruled out for that contest.
“My best feel for Bobby is we could have him back for Missouri,” Self said of the Jayhawks’ game against the Tigers on Dec. 10 in Columbia, Mo.
“Hopefully that will be the case. He had a hamstring (injury) earlier. I don’t even know if it’s the same leg. I think it is. It’s not a serious one, but … that first step (is difficult to make after suffering hamstring injury). I’ve struggled with some hamstring issues, too,” Self added, referring to his own playing career at Oklahoma State.
“I actually have torn mine once. It’s no fun. We don’t want it to become torn. ... We want it where it is and nurse it back. He’s doing treatment all the time. We’ll bring him back whenever he’s ready. He’s too important as Juan’s (Dajuan Harris) backup not to be a big part and be healthy going into the most important part of the season (Big 12 play).”
Meanwhile, McCullar suffered a strained groin “against Tennessee early,” Self said, adding, “He played with it (in that game). We are hopeful he can maybe practice Wednesday and play Thursday. If he’s not ready, we’ll sit him Thursday, too. We’ll try to get him ready because we’ve got a long time to heal up before we play again.”
KU, after the Seton Hall game, will be idle until the MU contest.
McCullar missed some games last season at Texas Tech because of an ankle injury.
“We don’t know,” Self said, asked if McCullar would play against Seton Hall. “Thursday for him is more probable obviously than Bobby, but right now if he’s not ready I’m not going to push him. Kevin has a history of dealing with some injuries that have lingered and hurt him at Tech where he missed a substantial amount of time. This is totally different. If he makes progress tomorrow and can go on Wednesday, he’ll play on Thursday. If he can’t I doubt he will.”
Who stepped up in the meantime?
KU freshman guard MJ Rice scored 19 points in 22 minutes on Monday. KU junior guard Joseph Yesufu had 14 points in 30 minutes. Yesufu also had three assists, three rebounds and a steal with one turnover. Rice had three rebounds and one turnover.