Kansas to face Eastern Kentucky in NCAA opener

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Jayhawk basketball

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Kansas earned a relatively short trip for the first weekend of the NCAA tournament.

The Jayhawks (24-9) received the No. 2 seed in the South Region and will play 15th-seeded Eastern Kentucky (24-9) on Friday in St. Louis in the second round of the tournament.

With star freshman Andrew Wiggins, Kansas captured its 10th-straight Big 12 regular-season title but lost to eventual champion Iowa State in the tournament semifinals to dash any hopes of a No. 1 seed.

The Jayhawks will likely be without 7-footer Joel Embiid until the tournament’s second weekend. The Big 12 defensive player of the year has a stress fracture in his lower back.

Eastern Kentucky beat Belmont in the Ohio Valley Conference final to earn its eighth NCAA tournament appearance and first since 2007.

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