Texas forward Jericho Sims has back injury, iffy vs. Iowa State

AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas junior forward Jericho Sims has been struggling with a back injury that is still being evaluated as the Longhorns get ready to play at Iowa State, coach Shaka Smart said Thursday.

Smart did not detail what the injury is, but he said Sims has been bothered by it for several weeks.

Sims, who has remained in the starting lineup, is averaging 9.7 points and a team-high 8.2 rebounds. He had nine points and 14 rebounds in Monday's 52-45 loss to No. 1 Baylor.

It was unclear if Sims will play against the Cyclones on Saturday or miss extended time.

"He's been battling some injuries in that area for quite a while," Smart said. "He's been a real warrior, to be honest with you, just the way he's hung in there. We've had to limit him quite a bit practice-wise the last couple of months."

Losing Sims would be another blow to the Longhorns, who played against Baylor without junior guard Jase Febres (knee) and freshman forward Kai Jones (ankle). Smart suggested Jones could return Saturday if he can return to practice this week.

The Longhorns (14-10, 4-7 Big 12) have lost three straight and are in danger of missing the NCAA tournament for the second consecutive season and third time in five years.