North Carolina was able to get the best of Ohio to advance to the elite eight without the help of star guard Kendall Marshall, but the team could have a hard time tonight as they face number two seeded Kansas. Kendall Marshall, who broke his right wrist last week as the Tarheels beat Creighton, will be sitting again tonight.
Marshall was injured seven days ago, had surgery on Monday, and had the cast removed on Wednesday. Marshall participated in UNC’s practice on Saturday, but said that he still can’t catch or pass with his injured wrist.
Marshall told SB Nation that his “range of motion” in his wrist is getting “better every day” but that it was still “tough to catch and tough to pass.”
“The first two times we went up the court, doing the warm-up drill, I was going as fast as I could… I was out of breath, and I was, like, ‘I’ve got to slow down. We’ve still got a full practice ahead of us.’ Sitting down for six days straight, not being able to do anything, that’s been frustrating. It felt good just to get out there and move around. I definitely felt the pain, but there’s going to be pain there for the next six weeks. It’s just a matter of how much I can take.”
After Saturday’s practice Coach Williams said that there was still a chance that Marshall would play against Kansas.
“There are two things that have to happen: One, he has to feel comfortable that he’s not hurting; and then two, I have to decide, ‘Can he be effective in the game with his situation?’ Today is the first day he bounced the ball, today is the first day he caught a ball, today is the first day he shot a ball. We kept him out of all the live stuff. Now we want to see if it bothers him or if it swells up or pains him.”
According to USA Today, North Carolina had an early morning shoot around today and the coaching staff decided that Marshall wasn’t healthy enough to suit up for today’s game.