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Texas F Kamaka Hepa in concussion protocol after practice injury

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The Alaska native missed the Oklahoma State game, but Shaka Smart hopes to have him back for the road trip to Norman.

Kamaka Hepa
Texas athletics

When the Texas Longhorns hosted the Oklahoma State Cowboys last Saturday at the Erwin Center, freshman forward Kamaka Hepa wasn’t dressed after needing stitches for a wound near his eye suffered during practice.

During a Monday media availability, head coach Shaka Smart said that the 6’9, 225-pounder is currently in concussion protocol as a result of the elbow he took to his face, but the staff is hopeful that he’ll return for Saturday’s road game against Oklahoma.

Smart added that Hepa was feeling better on Sunday, but the ultimate decision about when Hepa returns will be up to the training staff.

A native of Barrow, Alaska, Hepa has seen his playing time diminish since Big 12 play began in early January with six games in which he did not appear before sitting out against the Cowboys. In that stretch, his seven minutes during the blowout win in Morgantown against West Virginia were the most he’s played. And he’s only made two baskets in 2019 — one against Kansas State to open conference play and one against Georgia.