PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas — Bill Self could not wait to get began Wednesday on the Battle 4 Atlantis. Neither might hot-shooting Kansas rookie Gradey Dick.
Dick scored a season-high 25 factors to assist the third-ranked Jayhawks beat NC State 80-74 in Wednesday’s event opener, giving Self a profitable return to the bench after a four-game suspension.
Dick had 18 factors on six 3-pointers within the first half earlier than going 1 for 8 from the sphere after halftime. Jalen Wilson added 19 factors and 11 rebounds for the reigning nationwide champion Jayhawks (5-0), who blew an eight-point halftime lead and a nine-point second-half lead earlier than grinding it out.
“I think it really just showed what our team’s about and in crunch time, we can come out with tough plays when we really need it,” Dick mentioned.
It additionally helped, Dick mentioned, to “have a Hall of Famer in our corner” once more.
Kansas had imposed the suspension on Self and assistant Kurtis Townsend as a part of the fallout from a pending NCAA infractions case tied to the federal investigation into corruption inside the sport.
Self was allowed to educate practices, so he remained concerned with the group. But on gamedays, he mentioned he received a dose of the helpless perspective of a fan whereas assistant Norm Roberts led the group. He mentioned he could not even take notes till he watched the sport on a replay.
He was prepared for Wednesday proper from the 7 a.m. wake-up name.
“I usually don’t jump out of bed,” Self mentioned, “but I kind of did today because I was excited about what was getting ready to happen.”
As he emerged from the tunnel, Self was greeted with loud cheers from a boisterous Kansas fan part. He had a slight smile as one fan dangled a Jayhawks nationwide title banner as he walked by and gave mild high-fives to a line of a few half-dozen followers who had prolonged their arms over their railing.
Casey Morsell scored 21 factors to steer the Wolfpack (4-1), whereas Terquavion Smith added 19 factors.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.