Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Not without fault: Bill Self confesses shortcoming after winning AP award

Kansas head coach Bill Self smiles as he listens to forward Mario Little's senior speech following the Jayhawks' 64-51 win over Texas A&M on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self smiles as he listens to forward Mario Little's senior speech following the Jayhawks' 64-51 win over Texas A&M on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.



Bill Self weekly press conference, March. 7, 2011

video thumbnail

Kansas head coach Bill Self addressed the media at his weekly press conference Monday, March 7, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas University’s Bill Self, who was named the Associated Press Big 12 Coach of the Year on Monday — a day after the league coaches accorded him the same honor — insists he has his faults.

The man who has led KU, Illinois and Tulsa to 11 league championships in the last 13 years — his squads took second the other two years — reprimanded himself publicly Monday for perhaps not allowing his players to enjoy their successes as much as he should.

“One thing I’ve done a very poor job with my team is always talking about ‘next game,’’’ said Self, whose Jayhawks are 62-5 the last two seasons. “They (players) have become very robotic in thinking ‘next game,’ which is good in an NBA season, but in a college season, hey, this is a big deal to win a championship.

“We need to enjoy the wins more from this point forward,” added Self, whose Jayhawks wrapped up their seventh straight Big 12 title on Saturday at Missouri. On Monday it was revealed he drew 16 of 22 coach-of-the-year votes from individuals who regularly cover the Big 12. Texas A&M’s Mark Turgeon received three votes, Colorado’s Tad Boyle had two and Kansas State’s Frank Martin one.

“It’s something I have to stress to the guys. A lot of places we’d be cutting down nets and doing everything else when you win a conference championship. Here these guys think, ‘That’s what we’re supposed to do. We did our job,’ and they have done their job and done it very well, and they need to feel that from me more. I can do a better job of that,” Self said.

The Jayhawks obviously couldn’t cut down the nets in Mizzou Arena and didn’t want to celebrate after last Wednesday’s home win over Texas A&M, considering that just meant KU had claimed a share of the 2010-11 crown.

“You’ve got to be able to blow off steam,” Self said. “Baseball players, after a guy pitches a no-no, everybody runs out and jumps on him (pitcher). We haven’t had any of that. Football teams that have huge wins ... we haven’t had any of that stuff because there’s always the next game.

“I know in other sports you have the next game, too, but it’s not two days later. I need to do a better job of showing them how much I appreciate their efforts because their efforts have been unbelievable, absolutely remarkable. The last few years, these guys have done some things in my wildest dreams I would never thought they could accomplish from a winning standpoint.

“When you start adding up championship opportunities in our league and how many these guys have won, it’s staggering. Not to celebrate that as much as we do, I think is doing those players a disservice. We have to do a better job of that,” he noted.

Self, who expressed regret he didn’t let his players cut down the nets at Sprint Center last year after winning the Big 12 tournament — “I didn’t let ’em cause we had bigger fish to fry” — will feel better upon being reminded he actually did let the players celebrate that day.

“We did. He’s getting old, man. He forgets. He’s getting old,” junior Marcus Morris joked, remembering the net-snipping ceremony after a title win over Kansas State.

Senior Tyrel Reed said the players have celebrated “in their own ways. Since I’ve been here, we’ve won four regular-season championships. It’s an amazing feat. Down at the core, we know how big a deal it is. We may not celebrate in public, cutting down nets, but we still celebrate.”

Self did make sure to congratulate his team at practice Monday. Some of the Big 12 coaches, in turn, congratulated Self on a job well done.

“It’s pretty amazing,” Texas A&M coach Mark Turgeon told the AP. “Bill’s done a great job. I’ve been here four years, and it seems like every time we play them they’re ranked either No. 1 or No. 2 in the country. They have a toughness, and they win road games other teams can’t win.”

Noted KSU’s Martin: “For Kansas to do what they’ve done, seven consecutive years, is remarkable. It’s a credit to Bill Self. It’s a credit to his assistants, to their recruiting, their consistency in handling young men, making them perform, and getting people to coexist and put their egos aside and play and compete. That’s hard to do one year. But to do it seven years in a row is just amazing.”

Self has won the AP honor in three of his eight seasons at KU.

“I appreciate that people recognize the success we’ve had, and this is going to sound like coach-speak, but it really is the players who win championships,” Self said.


wyansas 3 years, 1 month ago

Haven't read all of the comments, so I don't know if this has already been mentioned. Maybe coach thinks he needs to let his kids blow off more steam during the season so they don't feel they need to blow off steam by doing other things which can get them suspended from the team. Maybe the rise in suspensions this year is what's spurring him to make such an adjustment in his motivational style. I agree though, we should let kids enjoy their accomplishments more.


theend 3 years, 1 month ago

Everybody should stop critisizing Sherron Collins in this latest episode of missing the planes. You have no idea what the whole story is. NONE.

And if you doubt his character.....take another look at his senior night speech on youtube. Sure he is arrogant and head-strong.....but he backed it up with his play. He is a great kid.

Get off his back.


REHawk 3 years, 1 month ago

txrochchalk, thanks for the Jason King link. I really hope to see Billy G. back in the Big 12 someday. If not Tech, perhaps Baylor will wish to clean up their image soon.


Kevin Long 3 years, 1 month ago

It makes me mad that people still want to compare Roy and Bill. Bill has won US a national title!!! Roy may have done it in Carolina, but he never did it here! I think he will win another one at some point too. Then will he finally be better???


3 years, 1 month ago

Good article from Jason King today on Billy Gillespie, with some quotes from Coach Self and Coach Brown…


mikehawk 3 years, 1 month ago

Bill Self...always the master psychologist. I think he is doing nothing more with his comments than trying to take the pressure off of his team, to get them loose and let them just go play in the tournament. Especially in the second round. This team, and its fans, and I am one, put all of our eggs in the NCAA basket. We don't really think much about winning the league. We like it. We expect it. But it is not the standard we measure ourselves against. He needs his team playing loose and I think he is trying to set the mood to get them more relaxed and loose going into the tournament. The need to motivate for the league grind is over. They will be ready to play from here out. The looser they play, the more effective they will be. Get too tight, and they can get into trouble when the fall behind. And they will fall behind somewhere. The basket gets real small when you tighten up. Relax guys, and play your game. You are good.


RockChalkGuy 3 years, 1 month ago

I can't imagine a coach I'd rather have represent and lead our storied program. Congratulations!


Vincent Patterson 3 years, 1 month ago

I just hope coach uses the past to his advantage and actually go back and watch those BAD tourney losses before this year's tourney. It's one thing when you lose to teams with the caliber of athletes we have and just get outplayed (i.e. Mich. State), but to lose to the likes of Bucknell, Bradley, and then admit that you don't ever go back and watch how you lose your tourney games on tape, and turnaround and lose to UNI in the same fashion last year? I'm sorry but those days of not going back and watching those losses should be over. You know a match up with one of those same midmajors is coming up. Senior laden, runs patient half court sets, fundamentally sound...The last thing you do is let teams like that come in and dictate the pace/tempo of the game, and if they try to, YOU DON"T LET THEM! YOU CHANGE THE PACE!!! YOU'RE KANSAS with loads of depth. RUN THEM OUT OF THE GYM!!! BTW, we all should know what's going to happen Selection Sunday. Best believe the Bucknell Bison will be in our bracket again after they win their tourney on the 11th. Just get ready for it.


eagle64 3 years, 1 month ago

why doesn't ku schedule unc for a home/away series ?


bradynsdad 3 years, 1 month ago

Hope the mclmores watched the game against mizzou and understand where Ben should attend. Doesn't deandre Daniels still plan to attend ku in the fall?


Ben Kane 3 years, 1 month ago

Could 'need' lead Anderson to Kansas? 1:01 PM ETKansas Jayhawks Top EmailComments Share Being one of the last high profile big men to commit to a school is working out well for Braeden Anderson. We told you last week that the 6-foot-8, 222-pound power forward was likely down to Kansas and Kentucky, and the highly sought after big man took an official trip to Lawrence over the weekend.

What he told Aaron Cedeno of after his trip is the interesting part. With Kansas' junior big men Marcus and Markieff Morris both expected to think seriously about jumping to the NBA after the season, Anderson realizes that the Jayhawks might be a good fit for him.

"The situation that they have, there's definitely more of a need over there," Anderson said. "Everybody is calling and saying that they have a need, but I feel like the need at Kansas is the most real."


William Blake 3 years, 1 month ago

There's an old boxing expression:

"Meatloaf makes you strong, steak makes you weak."

Coach Self has always been a meatloaf kind of coach. BTW: that's not a negative... It means he focuses on hard work and keeping it serious with the game... follow the rules, lots of discipline. That also means focusing on playing good defense.

Coach Self learned more than his players this year. It counts for more when you get older... because you've already been to the big dance and it becomes extremely difficult to open up to new ideas.

This team has won a lot of games with pretty mediocre defense... but the best offense in the land. Not really a typical characteristic for a meatloaf coach. This team has plenty of flash; contestants for dunking contests, efforts to try to make the highlights on Sportscenter... etc etc etc...

This team wore down Coach Self, and he finally admitted that steak is palatable... but he won't forget meatloaf anytime soon. He pressed one more plate of mush meat on the table... and his team has responded by playing better defense, perhaps at the cost of giving up some steak. There is only so much room on a plate.

Coach Self knows he has to learn to enjoy steak. He knows young star recruits are not attracted to meatloaf. And I think he figured out some real magic; that the right dinner plate to a National Championship has both steak and meatloaf piled high and deep.

2008... Final Four... KU vs UNC... that was the beginning of Coach Self's transformation into being a multiple-meat kind of guy.

Bon Appétit! (burp)


SaulGood 3 years, 1 month ago

I trust that if HCBS wants to reward his players for their hard work, he will find a way to do it tastefully and appropriately. A lot of us are worried about Self throwing an all-nighter in AFH, woofers bumping, drinks and fly honeys everywhere by some of what I've read here. If you celebrate right, you can point out the win, recognize the positives, and still never, for one second, lose focus on the path ahead. "Here's what we've done don't stop because it counts even more going forward!" is a simple way that comes to mind.


JCOAK2 3 years, 1 month ago

I don't think that Bill is a bad coach. He's pushing the kids, but I think that it's good that he is recognizing that they are just that, kids! He is an amazing coach and he deserves the award for sure! He's accomplished a lot!


FoCoCoHawk 3 years, 1 month ago

2008...clock running down and KU behind to a hot team. And Bill would not let his players give up: "YOU GOTTA BELIEVE! YOU GOTTA BELIEVE!"

This goes well beyond X's & O's and top notch recruiting and strays into the realm of evangelism. And the Jayhawks responded. I never for a second doubted we would dominate the overtime.

Hawks: Forget Frodo. If you want the Ring, to thine own Self be true.



theend 3 years, 1 month ago

I agree......Self is a better coach than Ol'Roy.......but I still aprreciate what Roy did for KU. Those were 15 good seasons.

I can understand being angry when Roy left.....but when he comes back I think the vast majority of KU fans will give him quite an ovation.

And you know who doesn't get enough attention or praise? Ted Owens. Great coach.


Steve Williams 3 years, 1 month ago

Enjoy it April 4th, in Houston,,, celebrate then

Dont let their heads get too big

Ali Farokmanesh


PVJayhawk 3 years, 1 month ago

How is it that nobody has used "Self Abuse"?


Studogg 3 years, 1 month ago

Great observation, kenshin! I love it!!


kushaw 3 years, 1 month ago

I really enjoyed this article. In a season that has a lot of parity I think Coach Self is really trying to figure out how to get this team to a Final Four. I'm liking the fact that he's understanding his downfalls and trying to do something to change it up.

I do have to admit that I'm nervous about playing a senior dominated team with experience (Utah State or St. Johns) that values possessions and preaches defense. I just hope Self understands the in-game decisions and values that as much as he is currently with his off the court deficiencies.

Less than a week away till Selection Sunday and for some reason I'm more nervous about how this season will end more so than the other years recently. IMO, it's important to have a decent run in the NCAA tourny and get things back on track (After last year's flameout) to rid KU of this "Negative Stigma" and gain some momentum in terms of recruiting. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!


kenshinU 3 years, 1 month ago

I like the fact that 21 of the 22 votes where for coaches associated with Kansas University.


bennybob 3 years, 1 month ago

Bucknell, Bradley, UNI....

yeah, keeping them thinking "next game" has really paid off so far.

might as well switch it up. what do you have to lose?


RockCaCO3 3 years, 1 month ago

"Not to celebrate that as much as we do, I think is doing those players a disservice."

Chuckee Cheese.


Chris1955 3 years, 1 month ago

"Pay heed all who enter. Beware of the Phog and Self immolation."


REHawk 3 years, 1 month ago

Bill Self's comments today, though obviously an expression from his heart, go a long way to display his coaching genius. His players get an inside view of the man he really is...while knowing, down deep, that yeah, we still have to look ahead immediately to our next game!


jayhawksf 3 years, 1 month ago

"The Jayhawks obviously couldn’t cut down the nets in Mizzou Arena...."

Of course the 'Hawks would never do that but does Gary or anybody else out there remember when OU cut the nets down in AFH after winning a game in OT and merely clinching a tie of the Big 8 title circa 1985? In the same game, I recall Billy Tubbs calling a time out with just seconds to play with the game already well in hand. And when the Jayhawk faithful cascaded him with a chorus of boos, he gave us a one-finger salute! Classless.


Funhawk 3 years, 1 month ago

Recall last March during the NCAA tournament, what a reporter said. The reporter was in both team's locker room right before the game. One team's pre-game locker room was somber and quiet, very serious. Their underdog opponent's pre-game locker room was a party of loud, blaring music and players celebrating like they had already won the game. Then three hours later, after the game in which we got upset, each locker room was just as before the game - one quiet and somber, the other blaring with loud music. Enjoy today because there may not be a tomorrow for you.


REHawk 3 years, 1 month ago

leonard: Nice contribution. This is why I spend up to an hour a day reading LJW posts during hoops seasons.


Jayhawk1116 3 years, 1 month ago

"Pay heed, all who enter. Beware of the sunspots."


leonard 3 years, 1 month ago

This from the St.Louis Post-Dispatch:

Missouri coach Mike Anderson hasn't come close to doing something about the Kansas domination under head coach Bill Self. Self has now routinely thrashed two MU coaches, Quin Snyder and Anderson, going 24-9 against Mizzou and winning 10 of the last 11. But MU is hardly alone in its futility against Self and KU.

These are the Big 12 "standings" in conference play since Self took over 2003-2004 season:

  1. KU 107-21 .. .836 winning pct.
  2. Texas 90-38 ... 17 games behind KU.
  3. Texas A&M 69-59 ... 38 games behind KU T-4. Kansas State 68-60 ... 39 games behind KU T-4. Oklahoma State 68-60 ... 39 games behind KU T-4 Oklahoma 68-60 ... 39 games behind KU
  4. Missouri 64-64 ... 43 games behind KU
  5. Texas Tech 53-75 ... 54 games behind KU
  6. Nebraska 50-78 ... 57 games behind KU T-10. Baylor 44-84 ... 63 games behind KU T-10. Colorado 44-84 ... 63 games behind KU
  7. Iowa State 43-85 ... 64 games behind KU


fansincewilt 3 years, 1 month ago

Bill Self soon will establish himself as the premier coach in Kansas history. Roy Williams won nine championships here but five of them were in the less glorious Big 8. Other coaches, including Allen, did not have nearly the winning percentages that both Williams and Self have. Bill Self's winning percentage is mind boggling. Some (at least one - me) rightfully consider him the best coach in American college basketball. A national championship would completely establish that. He has to beat out his rival Coach K at Duke. His home winning percentage record at Kansas is around 95%, something no other coach can rival.


Viggo3003 3 years, 1 month ago

I love when and how Bill Self enters AFH before the games and the crowd goes wild. He is a ROCKSTAR baby.


Steve Yeakel 3 years, 1 month ago

Bill's last bastion of improvement is just to consistently get his teams to play their very best the last 6 games of the year. Sometimes when you celebrate too much, too early, you lose your edge, so it sounds like he is trying to balance having fun and enjoying the journey along the way, with not losing that edge of having to play your very best, in every one of those last (hopefully) 6 games, to not go flat in the first or second round by assuming you can win, etc. Congratulations Coach Self for getting this far. Congratulations to a great Jayhawk team this year, so far. Finish with all you have. Go Jayhawks.


Iandhi 3 years, 1 month ago

"Pay heed, all who enter. Beware of the Phog, and know thy Self."


Alohahawk 3 years, 1 month ago

"Pay heed, all who enter. Beware of Coach Self"

Of the few who have coached the Jayhawks over the years, which one can claim the most conference championships, and how many has that coach won? Just curious.


Cmill1221 3 years, 1 month ago

I find it funny that Frank Martin got a vote! I mean were they not picked to win the confrence? Whatever. Congrats Bill and Marcus!


Andrew Dunlap 3 years, 1 month ago

Roy who? Yeah, we appreciate ol Roy for setting the standard but Self is a much better coach. He will win 3 or 4 more NCAA championships before retires and will be the son of Phog!


Commenting has been disabled for this item.