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Kansas freshman Joel Embiid to see back specialist in California

Kansas freshman Joel Embiid will see a specialist Monday for a lower-back strain. (USATSI)
Kansas freshman Joel Embiid will see a specialist Monday in California. (USATSI)

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Kansas center Joel Embiid, the possible No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, flew to Los Angeles on Sunday to get a second opinion on a lower back injury that's caused him to miss the past two games, a source close to the program told CBSSports.com.

Embiid is scheduled to meet with a back specialist on Monday morning.

Initially, Kansas officials only described the injury as a lower-back strain. But KU coach Bill Self acknowledged to the Kansas City Star late Sunday that Embiid's issues are more "significant" than a lower-back strain. The 7-foot freshmen is supposed to return to campus late Monday or early Tuesday, a source told CBSSports.com on Sunday.

The Jayhawks will play either Oklahoma State or Texas Tech on Thursday in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament at the Sprint Center in Kansas City. KU is 2-1 this season without Embiid, who is averaging 11.2 points and 8.1 rebounds per game.


Gary Parrish is a senior college basketball columnist for CBSSports.com and frequent contributor to the CBS Sports Network. The Mississippi native also hosts the highest-rated sports talk radio show -- The Gary Parrish Show -- in the history of Memphis. He lives in that area with his wife, two children and a dog.
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