The unexpected absence of arguably Kansas basketball’s most important player didn’t affect the Jayhawks — this time.

No. 6-ranked KU downed Oklahoma 66-52 on Tuesday night at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Okla., winning despite the late scratch of sophomore starting point guard Devon Dotson. The victory was of the bounce-back variety for Bill Self’s shorthanded squad, which on Saturday suffered a rare home defeat to now-No. 2 Baylor, 67-55.

“You have to win games like that in order to have great seasons,” Self said in a postgame radio interview. “We can still have a great season even though we lost a home game, but certainly you can’t afford to go on the road and not take care of business when you have an opportunity to win the game. We certainly handled that pretty well tonight.”

The Big 12 leader in points per game (18), Dotson suffered what Self labeled a hip pointer injury Saturday but was expected to play in Tuesday’s tilt as late as Monday afternoon. That didn’t occur, of course, with Dotson ruled out after being unable to go in the team’s pregame shootaround. Self said there is no timetable for Dotson's return.

But plenty of other Jayhawks stepped up.

First-time Jayhawk starter Isaiah Moss scored 20 points with a 6-for-11 clip from 3-point range to lead all scorers, Udoka Azubuike scored 16 points and hauled in 14 rebounds to help KU to a 46-32 advantage on the glass and Marcus Garrett finished with 15 points and a team-high five assists for the Jayhawks, who were down to eight scholarship players on hand.

“We competed,” Self said. “You can compete and not play great, but if I had to pick (between) making shots or really competing, I’d take competing every day, and we did today.”

KU in the second half shot 50% from the floor, 60% from beyond the arc and was perfect from the free-throw line, riding a late 15-2 run to the comfortable victory.

The Jayhawks (13-3, 3-1 Big 12) led by one at halftime despite a 12-for-31 shooting performance, a 2-for-9 clip from 3-point range and a 2-for-8 conversion rate on free-throw attempts. KU limited the Sooners (11-5, 2-2) to a 9-for-32 showing from the field in the opening period en route to a 28-27 advantage.

KU came out hot on offense to start the second period, hitting 6 of 7 shots to start the frame. OU stuck around, though, with Kristian Doolittle’s jumper creating a 46-42 deficit with 9:24 to play. But a Moss 3-pointer — his third in three second-half attempts at that point — pushed the Jayhawk lead to seven, and after Doolittle and Garrett traded treys, a David McCormack finish of an Ochai Agbaji lob pass created a 54-45 lead for the visitors with 7:04 left.

Garrett, who filled in for Dotson at point guard, converted a pair of free throws to push the lead to double figures with 4:41 remaining. OU, meanwhile, endured a nearly five-minute scoring drought and an 0-for-6 shooting stretch during that time frame, which finally ended on an Austin Reaves layup that made the Sooners’ hole 56-47 at the 3:03 mark.

KU’s answer again came from Moss — who else? — who drained a corner 3 out of timeout for a 59-47 advantage.

“He was terrific,” Self said of Moss. “He guarded too. He tried hard. I do think this: What’d he take, 11 3s? He probably should’ve taken 14. He turned down some. But yeah, that was a big difference. We don’t win if he doesn’t step up and play like he did.”

If Moss’ make wasn’t the game’s dagger, what followed surely put the Sooners away. Christian Braun hit a pair of free-throw tries to push the Jayhawks to a 6-for-6 second-half mark from the stripe, and Agbaji hit a 3 with 1:28 left for a 17-point lead, sending scores of Sooner fans to the exits. The outcome broke a two-game losing streak for KU in Norman.

Self lauded Agbaji’s 38-minute performance through a mid-game back injury, Garrett’s “unbelievable” running of the offense despite tweaking a nagging ankle injury, and contributions from true freshmen Braun and Tristan Enaruna. But it was Azubuike, Self said, who was “the best player on the court, by far," particularly on the defensive end.

“Just the way he guarded everybody, it allowed us to switch,” Self said. “He was terrific. Really happy for him.”

Azubuike finished 7-for-10 from the floor and added three blocked shots.

“He was frustrated obviously Saturday because he didn’t get touches, but he got touches tonight,” Self said. “Even when he didn’t get touches he went and got the ball off the glass. We didn’t do a great job passing him the ball again. I guarantee you we’ll watch tape and say, ‘Well, there’s five times he should’ve caught the ball at three feet.’ But it was better.”

OU, which was paced by Doolittle and De'Vion Harmon (13 points apiece), converted just 30.6% of its field goal attempts and 8 of 29 tries from 3.

KU’s season continues with another road tilt, a 1 p.m. Saturday clash with Texas in Austin.

“Our league’s good, but still yet, the way the league is and as good as we know Baylor is, we’d better keep taking care of business because I don’t think Baylor will be gotten very often,” Self said. “We can’t afford to lose any more contact with them.”