Kansas is deep and talented enough to endure an injury here or there. But no team wants to lose its third-leading scorer, who doubles as its second-leading rebounder, for a significant amount of time. Which is why Tuesday’s 72-47 victory over Wofford felt more like a loss for the Jayhawks.

“He sprained it pretty good,” KU coach Bill Self said after the game while addressing a right ankle injury Udoka Azubuike suffered when he landed awkwardly in Tuesday’s first half. “X-rays are negative. But he’ll be out. And when I say ‘out,’ [I don’t mean] ‘day to day.’ It’ll be a while. Hopefully we’ll have him back healthy before Christmas [but] we don’t know that to be the case. We’ll have to wait and see — see how the swelling goes. He was hurting. It’s a legitimate, very serious, ankle sprain.”

This is not insignificant.

Azubuike is averaging 12.9 points and 6.1 rebounds in 20.1 minutes per game even after getting just zero points and four rebounds in four minutes against Wofford. Barring a surprise, he’ll now likely be sidelined for at least the next three games against New Mexico State, Villanova and South Dakota, and it’s possible the 7-foot-1 center will also miss the Jayhawks’ first road game of the season — a Dec. 22 contest at Arizona State. Either way, Kansas remains No. 1 in Wednesday morning’s updated Top 25 And 1. The Jayhawks, for what it’s worth, are the nation’s only team that currently ranks in the top five in both offensive and defensive efficiency.


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