LAWRENCE — Bill Self doesn’t have a must-know deadline for whether injured starting point guard Devon Dotson will be able to see the court in Kansas’ next contest at Texas.
But the Jayhawk head coach would obviously prefer an expedited answer.
“Sure, I’d like to know sometime today and then whatever,” said Self, speaking Thursday ahead of a team practice. “And then if not today, tomorrow morning. And if not tomorrow morning, tomorrow afternoon.”
Dotson, who is dealing with a hip pointer injury sustained last Saturday, missed the No. 6-ranked Jayhawks’ 66-52 road victory at Oklahoma on Tuesday and is questionable for the 1 p.m. Saturday clash with the Longhorns at Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas. The sophomore leads the Big 12 in scoring with an 18-point average and paces the Jayhawks (13-3, 3-1 Big 12) in assists (4.4 per game) and steals (2.3).
Self didn't have a meaningful update Thursday. Regardless of when he discovers Dotson’s status for the Texas contest, the Hall of Famer stated it won’t affect how his team approaches what will be its third league road contest.
“People make too big a deal out of this. We’re not going to change our strategy a lot whether he does or does not (play). This is who we are,” Self said. “It’s different than football (where) you play one game a week and you only play 12. Well, here there’s a lot of things. So if he’s day-to-day I’m not going to change how we play totally for this one game knowing we’re going to go right back to the way it is, and we don’t even know if he’ll play or not.
“We would enjoy having him with us regardless of when he lets us know, but sooner is definitely better than later.”
As Self indicated, the decision on when Dotson returns is solely in the hands of the point guard.
Hip pointer injuries tend to be a matter of pain tolerance, Self said, and while Dotson participated in individual workouts Wednesday, game- and even practice-type situations present different obstacles.
“He looks really good and he moved well and everything (Wednesday), but he didn’t get a hit,” Self said Wednesday on his weekly “Hawk Talk” radio show. “That’s one of the signs probably on where he will feel physically. If you get a hit it’s going to set you back at least temporarily there ’til that initial pain can go away.”
Dotson suffered the injury in the first half of the Jayhawks’ 67-55 home defeat to Baylor last Saturday, and while he was able to return to that contest, he was a no-go against the Sooners. Junior Marcus Garrett filled in at point guard Tuesday and finished with 15 points, 5 assists and 5 rebounds versus just one turnover.
“He’s dealing with it well, man,” Garrett said of Dotson. “He’s still (got) the same attitude, still playing every day, still laughing. I mean, he’s ready.”
Despite the 14-point margin of victory, Self said KU “dodged a bullet” against the Sooners.
“Winning on the road is a premium when you’re full speed. So we hope to get him back,” Self said. “I personally think that he’s tough to the point where he can play through some discomfort or through some pain or through some soreness. I think he can. That just really tells you how much pain he was in (Tuesday) night or he would’ve been out there playing. He was hurt.”
Self said on Thursday that Dotson is “making progress." At least one teammate has seen enough to believe that the speedster will indeed suit up against the Longhorns.
“I do,” Garrett said. “I do, yeah.”