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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Josh Selby’s 20th birthday no party after loss to VCU

Kansas guard Josh Selby leans over to hug forward Markieff Morris in the locker room following the Jayhawks' 71-61 loss to Virginia Commonwealth on Sunday, March 27, 2011 at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

Kansas guard Josh Selby leans over to hug forward Markieff Morris in the locker room following the Jayhawks' 71-61 loss to Virginia Commonwealth on Sunday, March 27, 2011 at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

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Kansas fell to Virginia Commonwealth in an Elite Eight matchup Sunday, March 27, 2011 at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

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Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 71-61 loss to VCU on March 27, 2011.

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KU senior guards Tyrel Reed and Brady Morningstar

KU senior guards Tyrel Reed and Brady Morningstar talk to reporters following VCU's 71-61 victory over Kansas on March 27, 2011.

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— When Kansas University freshman guard Josh Selby woke up Sunday morning, he had a Final Four in his sights and a handful of “Happy Birthday” texts on his phone.

By the time he went to bed, there was nothing happy about his 20th birthday.

“This is actually a worse day for me because it’s my birthday,” said a dejected Selby in the KU locker room following the Jayhawks’ stunning 71-61 loss to VCU in the Elite Eight. “I’m just gonna try to sleep it off, wake up tomorrow and spend time with my teammates and my family.”

When he arrived at Kansas as one of the most hyped recruits in school history, Selby was an almost-certain one-and-done player. But the play that elevated him to that level never really surfaced at Kansas. Other than a stellar debut against USC, in which he scored 21 points on 5-of-8 three-point shooting, Selby never really got going. A nine-game suspension held him up initially, and injuries broke his rhythm the rest of the way.

For the season, the 6-foot-2 guard from Baltimore averaged 7.9 points and 20 minutes and shot 37 percent from the floor and 36 percent from three-point range.

Through it all, Selby maintained he was not worried about individual statistics, only winning a ring. That’s what made the pain of Sunday’s loss sting so deeply.

“I can’t even explain it,” Selby said. “I’m goin’ through it right now. I haven’t felt this bad since we lost my senior year (of high school) in the states. People go to Kansas to win championships. That’s the reason why I came to Kansas. And we were close. It just didn’t happen for us.”

Now, Selby must decide whether the one-and-done premonition many people had before he ever played a game at Kansas was on the money or off the mark. Selby said the heartbreaking loss did not add weight to the decision.

“I wouldn’t say there’s more to think about,” he said. “Try to get this loss out of my head first and then ... I don’t know. I’ll just talk it over with my mom. I don’t know.”

What he does know is that his 20th birthday will not be one he looks back on fondly.

“I can’t put it in words. I can’t even explain it,” Selby said. “It’s just a feeling that you don’t want to have.”

Selby is one of as many as five Jayhawks who could leave Kansas early to go pro. Junior forward Markieff Morris is another, and he said he believed all of them would at least discuss their decisions together.

“Definitely,” Morris said. “These guys are my brothers, they’re my family. ... They’ll definitely be a part of whatever decision we make.”

Comments

100 8 years, 7 months ago

Tough game today Josh....

We're all looking forward to seeing you guys all play together next year!!!!

It's too early in the twins life for them to live apart, they'll be back. With you, Elijah & Tyshawn in the back court, it's gonna be a blast!

Thanks for choosing to be a Jayhawk Josh!

Richmonder 8 years, 7 months ago

How does that piece of Humble pie taste KU fan?

I attended the games in San Antonio and your fellow KU fans were insufferable.

Better watch what you predict and who you bully because you could end up weeping in the towel like Morris.

Enjoy watching the Final Four!

David Lara 8 years, 7 months ago

Enjoy watching the only real basketball team from Richmond in the final four. Your spiders were a total joke, you moron.

Richmonder 8 years, 7 months ago

Hey, LAJayhawks5 (Below) I'm actually a VCU fan...
VCU outplayed, outscored and outclassed your organization. Don't forget the chips and dip at your Final Four watch party. You can thank one of the Morris brothers for talking smack before the game for firing up the Rams. You fall into the same category as all of the insufferable KU fans we met in San Antonio.... arrogant. Have a pleasant off season.

Joseph Leon 8 years, 7 months ago

What smack was M. Morris talking? Like, "y'all better be ready?" Just curious. I think Jayhawk fans are generally pretty mellow. That wasn't the case?

Brian Conrad 8 years, 7 months ago

Richmonder have your one week of your life ... KU will be back again and again. you like Al Bundy will live on with your one tooth wife selling shoes or pumpin septic tanks and dream of the one day that shined the only one of your life..

Jaminrawk 8 years, 7 months ago

You too. You see, we recently have a championship. VCU will get smoked by Butler and then Shaka Smart will leave. And then VCU will fade back into obscurity with the Richmond Spiders. But you'll always have a neat Final Four shirt. Troll.

SaulGood 8 years, 7 months ago

Way to keep your team close. Not sure I share your optimism about the draft leaving us with our twin towers, but hey - I hope for it too! Nice post - I've really enjoyed your enthusiasm this season and your simple approach! Way to...

Own!!!!!

The!!!!!

Message Boards!!!!!

Hail_To_Thee 8 years, 7 months ago

Be there shortly. I'll bring the match if you got the gas... ;)

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

I did a little research and 18 is the ave. age of incoming freshman, most turn 19 at some point during the second semester.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Probably that most freshman come in as 17 year olds..no wonder he is one and done.

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 7 months ago

most freshman turn 19 during their freshman year. Josh turned 20. Big whoop.

HawksWin 8 years, 7 months ago

In KS, most freshmen may be 18, but other states/counties have different start date. So depending on where you live, your birth month/dates, a freshman could easily be 19. I turned 19 a month after graduating from high school at 18 with As Bs. Also, many mothers decide to hold back their boys when are the youngest in the class. So let's not judge Shelby or anyone for the matter.

HawksWin 8 years, 7 months ago

In KS, most freshmen may be 18, but other states/counties have different start date. So depending on where you live, your birth month/date, a freshman could easily be 19. Had friends who turned 19 a few months after graduating from high school at 18, and they were A students. Also, some mothers decide to hold back their boys when are the youngest in the class. So let's not judge Shelby or anyone else for the matter.

phi4life940 8 years, 7 months ago

No matter what...we love you Josh. You're a part of the Jayhawk family. No fair-weather fans here.

I'll echo what 100 said....Thanks for choosing to be a Jayhawk.

SaulGood 8 years, 7 months ago

+1 man, you said it - we are lucky to have gotten to watch Josh mature. I hope he does come back to farm his skills - you can't find a better program that makes you earn your stripes. Look at Woolridge for pete's sake, and Releford - these guys are top-tier talent anywhere else, and they spend their minutes learning from Self.

hawks1fan 8 years, 7 months ago

hey vcu hope you realize your run can end just like that so to quote a friend of mine who said this " don't count your chickens before they hatch" meaning be careful for what you wish for

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 7 months ago

I think there was a guy on the VCU team celebrating a birthday today as well.

chriz 8 years, 7 months ago

Do people really think that Josh will go pro? Maybe after another year, but no one's gonna pick him up after he played this year. I know the NBA goes off of talent, and Selby has plenty, but his stock has fallen big time.

SaulGood 8 years, 7 months ago

I personally believe that Josh's drive to play good basketball and set himself up for a starring role on an NBA team will keep him here. That being said, it's impossible to predict what means more to him when there are, at minimum, hundreds of thousands of dollars that could end up coming his way. Last I checked, the league minimum was $250,000/yr. That would be tough for anyone to walk away from after an injury-plagued season.

e93bigd 8 years, 7 months ago

After letting this soak in for a little while, it's plainly obvious to me. We played in a terrible conference this year. We were not tested seriously in this tournament and were way too confident. Our depth was overrated. These are not excuses, just the reasons we did not make it happen. Everyone needs to understand that winning the tournament is a monumental task and takes a lot of luck. We don't win in '08 without luck. Hopefully we'll get our underclassmen back but you know some of them will be gone. Just the way it goes now. With a little luck, we'll be back. You know we will.

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

According to your logic we'd be a much better team if we played in VCU's conference? or Butler's? The Big East must have been really weak too, huh? Same would go for the Big Ten and the SEC must have been one of the strongest?

Our conference had nothing to do with this loss.

Our depth overrated? Did you notice that we didn't even play our bench much?

Silliness

e93bigd 8 years, 7 months ago

That's not what I said or meant at all. How do you draw those conclusions from a few sentences of mine? We dominate our conference year after year then usually get upset in the NCAA tournament. Maybe our teams aren't that good. Can you explain why we are usually beaten by a lower seed?

Yes, our depth was overrated. You said it yourself and yes I noticed, they didn't play. Earlier in the year our bench was highly thought of. I know minutes change in the tournament but some quality minutes and production would have been helpful.

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

"After letting this soak in for a little while, it's plainly obvious to me"

You grasp at your thoughts like a bare-handed tug of water from the ocean. But this water you try to pull was never there. Someone has drained this vast emptiness long ago... Now, you stop to think back, was it ever there?

Do me a favor and make a life list of things that are plainly obvious to you. I'll write the preface, organize it and have it bound. We'll make millions while we fill the world with laughter!

Just to clarify- I can explain why we lose to a lower seed. We score less points than them! It's either that or it might be the snack stand popcorn. I'll have to run my calculations and get back to you.

BTW-VCU lost by 12 to the Richmond Spiders. That means they are better than us but the spiders are better than them but we're better than the spiders... argh! this is soooo confusing my head is about to rupture!!!!

Dirk Medema 8 years, 7 months ago

Morrii said it in a pre-game presser, "At KU, you're almost always favored to win." And that soft schedule you allude to is consistently ranked in the top 10 or 20. The team has come a long way, but today we were really out toughed. The bench didn't come through today, but they have been the difference in other games.

Next time you jerk on a knee or whatever, do it in private.

e93bigd 8 years, 7 months ago

I didn't say soft schedule. I said our conference wasn't good. You don't think so? Come up with your own ideas then. When you very consistently get beat in the tournament by lower seeds, something isn't right. It's been that way for a long time.

SaulGood 8 years, 7 months ago

I don't know about your statement about the conference. I feel like there's a closeness to the Big 12 that keeps rivalries pretty hot and prepares us well for high-pressure games. I was impressed with B12 play, outside the tournament, for the most part. I would say that with coastal conferences, you see a much different style of basketball, and one of the reasons I love KU is that in the Midwest, you see a very honest, down-to-earth style of ball instead of tacky flash-for-flashbulbs type of ball. I don't think you can really compare the two. I can appreciate your hope for our underclassmen to come back, as anyone would love to see the Morris twins take part in another year. Now, how likely that is, I don't have a ton of optimism.

Now I think where you and I might completely agree is that our non-conference schedule should be quite a lot tougher. I don't know anything about the agreements and negotiations that are required to bring in some of these perennial giants from other conferences, but if I had my way, I'd see us dropping UMKC and maybe even Washburn (gasp!) in favor of us having a real ticket-seller and risking us losing some face in the non-con. VCU obviously took some lumps before they met us, and unless I was watching a different game, the Rams weren't in the least afraid of losing last night. I'd like us to be the same way.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

If you look at the Big 12 since it came to be...We have had a total of 1 NCAA championships in men's BB. Compare that number to the other majors during the same time period..and it is not impressive.

Brian Conrad 8 years, 7 months ago

weak conference comments just stupid! the Big East 1 left out of 11 pretty bad and that was in elight eight. Big 10 none left, ACC none .. Pac 10/12 whatever zero. SEC very lucky they have complete cheater coach or they would be zero. follow the conferences in the final four year in and year out if you are dumb enough to think they are really tough. hope Butler wins .. this is the last hoorah for them. next year will not win one game in tourney. VCU will never get in again. UConn will vanish back to middle of Big Least and Kentucky will be on probation so this whole year will be gone from record books ( like Memphis ) ,Cal runs for NBA as the hammer comes down... one private detective with third grade education could go to Kentucky and find 1000 violations. they have been biggest cheaters in the NCAA and still are. point shaving. players admit being paid. coach on probation EVERY school he has coached.. yes they are strong league..

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Call it what you want but still only 1 NCAA Men's BB in the history of the Big 12. The ACC has 5 since the Big 12 formed. Big East: 3 SEC: 5 (maybe 6 after this year?) Big 10: 1 Pac 10: 2 I know we have good teams but you can't change the facts... Maybe you can interpret this better than I can..I'm more than willing to listen.

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

I want to thank the team for a great year. It sucks so many people base the entire season on the tourney. .

All the idiots out there that want to put the blame on an individual player or even the coach, please don't waste your time.

Yeah, there are plenty of things that could have been done differently, but in the end it came down to an off night offensively. We made 9.5% of our threes and they made 48%. We had plenty of good looks and just couldn't get them to go in.
On the other side, they couldn't miss from three and shot many of them. Three point shots are difficult to guard, but then again it's supposed to be difficult to make make them, that's why they are worth an extra point.

I personally would have liked to see some other guys out there for a longer stint, like Releford or Ej, just long enough to see if they could sink some threes and loosen the rest of the team up. Bill tends to tighten his rotation and play the guys he trusts the most. I think he also likes to have the seniors (and those that might leave) out there so they can take ownership and try to turn things around themselves.

I don't put blame on anyone though. It's just so hard to think the most efficient scoring team in the nation could have this bad of a night shooting.

Don't be down Hawks, one off game does not make this a bad season.

Rock Chalk!

LuvKansas 8 years, 7 months ago

Well said ajhk, everyone is a Coach when a #1 ranked team loses to a #11 ranked team!! The Jayhawks had a great season, it came to an end today because of their horrible shooting percentage from the free throw line and the perimeter shooting. The ball has to go into the hoop to win. The Jayhawks didn't play to their potential today. VCU was the better team today

SaulGood 8 years, 7 months ago

+100 ajhk. This sums it up completely. Nice.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Undoubtedly..this was a team loss in every way.

ahpersecoachingexperience 8 years, 7 months ago

a little comparison for you hcbs trolls. excluding last year, duke has lost to a team seaded higher (meaning duke was the favorite) than them for seven straight years. most of these losses coming in or before the sweet 16.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Since HCBS has come to KU, we have lost to lower seeds in 7 out of 8 years..seems pretty close. Like Duke, we are often highly ranked so unless we win it all..we will probably lose to a lower seed.

speegku 8 years, 7 months ago

Not true... 2009 - #3 seed KU lost to #2 seed Mich St. 2008 - Champions 2004 - #4 seed KU lost in OT to #3 seed Georgia Tech

(Also, in 2007, we were technically a #1 seed but had to play a home game against #2 seed UCLA).

I do agree that upsets to low seeded mid-majors seem to be happening WAY TOO MUCH, but its not every year.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Your memory is better than mine but my main point is that if your highly seeded every year and don't win it all there is a good chance you lost to a lower seed..it is just averages but I should have researched before posting.. My memory ain't what it used to be : )

loyal2thaphog 8 years, 7 months ago

In 1999 North Carolina, then a 3 seed, lost to Weber State, a 14 seed, in the first round of the tournament.

loyal2thaphog 8 years, 7 months ago

The words of Forrest Gump (or Tom Hanks) "it happens..."

Lex Valdez 8 years, 7 months ago

thanks for another great year again hawks! rock chalk jayhawk ku forever!

Funhawk 8 years, 7 months ago

Happy birthday, Josh! Thanks for coming to Lawrence to be a Jayhawk :)
and keep smilin'! That grin you have is contagious. We will all be smiling again when we realize another great year is because of guys like you!

And, thank you, Matt Tait, for always being positive.

Ilses 8 years, 7 months ago

It was my birthday as well and I'd have to say it was not an enjoyable birthday dinner!

Congratulations Josh! I'm proud to be a hawk fan, always! This was a fantastic season that ubfortunately ended to soon. Damm shame it had to end on our birthday.

Saguaro_Jayhawk 8 years, 7 months ago

Very nice camera angle! Many players would not allow camera man that much access.

HawkBBall 8 years, 7 months ago

Josh, take time to heal. We need you next year!

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

Bulletin: Marcus Morris, now hear this!

No one let anyone down!

Everyone exceeded expectations.

It is not failure to fall short of hopes.

It is only failure to fall short of expectations, because you did not do your best.

Doing one's best does not always equal winning, or having the best game you ever had.

Doing one's best means taking what hard work, circumstance and chance offered you on any given day, and making the most of them.

Did you try your hardest on that day to do every thing you could have done?

KU got tired. KU had a bad shooting game. KU spent too much emotion on Richmond and did not have enough left for VCU, etc. Those were givens. Perhaps in another season solutions can bee found and implemented from the beginning of a season that will prevent those givens from occurring, but this season they were givens.

So: how did you and the team do given the obstacles that faced you that day? That is the question.

I saw no one quit.

I saw no one role over and take a whipping like broken puppies.

I saw a ferocious come back.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

I saw players struggling for all they were worth against the extreme adversity of an off night, fatigue, and a good opponent.

I saw flaws in the scouting report, not just flaws in the execution of it.

But in the end, all KU has to do is just get better at reducing the trey shooting troughs. If you guys had made just 20 percent of your treys, it would have been a W and next.

Improve from 10 to 20 percent trey shooting on the bad game of the six game series each of the last two years and KU would probably have two more rings.

"Do your best...that is success."

None of you had your best games of the season.

But each of you did your best given the circumstances.

You did your best on a bad night.

The American soldiers on Corrigedor in WWII got crushed and had to surrender to what was a superior foe on that day in that single battle, even though that foe was not the better foe overall and would one day be proven conclusively not to be.

In college basketball, unlike war, sometimes there is not time for the best team to stay together long enough to prove it is the best team.

I believe, given the way Coach Self coaches now, and the players play, now, you and they did their best and so they were/are successful and should feel so.

No head hanging.

No "I let everyone down," Marcus Morris.

You are the cornerstone of the team that got us to a great season., a splendid season.

You are only a junior.

The 2008 ring team was mostly seniors, certainly the corner stone player--Brandon Rush--was. It took that team that long to prove how good it was.

If you were to come back next season, we would probably win it all, because Coach Self and you would figure out how to reduce the troughs just enough to scrape through a game like UNI, or VCU.

You are a fine human being, Marcus, and you, too, Kieff, and all of you, and I would be proud and the luckiest man in the world to have any, or all of you, as as my sons.

FOE!

Rock Chalk!

FarSideHawk 8 years, 7 months ago

Thank you, Jaybate. I had been waiting for some wisdom from you. I can understand the hurt, but too many people are being just overtly negative.

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

Love that you're bringing the positivity. Well done.

I love this team and appreciate all the great play.

They can't get too down, it's just one game. The three point line is the great equalizer. VCU did not bring a good game, they just made threes on a night we didn't shoot well.

Though I'm not in favor of it, getting rid of the three point line would allow the power teams to dominate. Not a complaint, just a fact. The three line keeps everyone on their toes and allows for a more exciting/unpredictable game.

I hope these kids can get past the one game and see how great of a season they gave us! Thanks boys!

kkoenig 8 years, 7 months ago

slight correction: Brandon Rush was a junior during the 2008 championship year.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

kkoenig,

Really? I will double my Aricept starting today! :-)

Lance Hobson 8 years, 7 months ago

The guys that lost the game for us are seniors and are gone, thankfully. Bring back everyone else and add some shooters who aren't scared and we'll be great again next year.

Jacobpaul81 8 years, 7 months ago

These guys, every single one of them, would benefit from one more year of school. Not a single one of them have developed the maturity to win at this high a level. They have the skill set. One more year under Coach Self would be a great asset to them moving forward and an opportunity to further grow. The Morris twins, Selby, Robinson and Taylor all have a chance to improve their draft stock with one more year's maturity and development. All 5 can go high in the draft, but with the several "disappearing act" performances of this year (Texas, KSU, Boston, VCU, UCLA, Arizona), none of them have proven themselves NBA ready. The Morris twins could potentially go in round 1, but they won't be top 10 picks. With another year, both would be.

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

You sound whiny and selfish. Try growing up in the ghetto and having as few resources as they did. It's more important to make sure they are doing right by their family. For some it might be better coming back, for those predicted to go high, probably not. They gave this season their all and I'm happy with that. I'd love to see them all make it back next year but not if it means passing up the ability to help their families now. You never know what might happen, an injury, or...

Please don't go around telling them what's best for them. Why don't we just wait and let them tell us?

Brian Conrad 8 years, 7 months ago

the second contract is the big one in the NBA. If you think you may want to stay in the NBA for the second contract it is in the players interest to learn to be the best they can and not end up in the NBA learning league. Aldridge was top ten pick and still ended up in the developement league.. if he would have come back he would have been coached another year with Danny.. and positively would have won the NCAA ring.. bet he would have enjoyed this year more than the developement league. all of these young men will end up with more money than they need and can never buy another year of fun with their brothers. money is not everything and the chance they go down in draft is 1 in a million. $250,000 will not last very long. that being said .. As a KU fan I always want what is best for these young men. very few say they waited to long in college. Many say they should have stayed! odds of that are very high. this comment comes from fellow that grew up in low income housing , made millions and went broke.. it was not the millions that I remember the most , would have given it all for a year as the king of campus.. we all remember the closeness, the brotherhood of our tight high school/college friends and no matter how much we make we seek just one more year... ONE fan that hopes they get together ( like the UNC players did ) and say ... how about one more year of fun!

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

Your second contract theory assumes a few things:

First, the player's draft status will not go down from one year to the next.

Next, the player will not encounter and injury that may affect their ability to play.

Also, the player's family can wait another year.

Last, the player will someday be capable of playing in the NBA relative to their high status.

Many players picked in lottery will not pan out no matter how many years they stay in school before they go. So, if you are a lottery pick, you take it, because if you are not good enough for the NBA then take the money before someone finds out. If you are good enough then there is nothing to worry about and that second contract will be there.

Money is not everything- sounds great if you are middle class or better, because you have no understanding of what your money is getting you in this country.

I'd love to have all the guys back. I just think it's insincere for the fans to tell the players they should come back.

Lacy Mohler 8 years, 7 months ago

JP81--I agree with you competely that all these guys could benefit from another year under Self and Manning. I've gotten the impression that Angel Morris would like her guys to get a degree before they move on to the NBA. They don't appear to be injury prone like Cole.

The Lawrence community is behind Robinson and it would not harm him or his sister to stay another year. He jumps into the fray a little too easily and it makes me think of Pierce and the stabbing incident early in his NBA carreer. Robinison is a great kid but he isn't invincible.

TT probably wouldn't get drafted and I don't know about Selby. Great personality and the guys seem to really like him, but he just didn't bring it this year. It didn't appear he was saving himself like X Henry, he was trying but getting frustrated. Hope he gives KU another year.

Really enjoyed this season. At one point it looked like they wouldn't even win the Big Twelve. Achieved much more than expected--fell just a little short of their dreams.

Ron Franklin 8 years, 7 months ago

So, Moving onto next year.

Josh is gone. Or at least that is my opinion. I know for a fact that Maeshon is moving out of town in June.

The Twins are Gone.

TRob is gone.

Next year we're looking at

1 Tyshawn 2 Elijah 3 TReleford 4 Justin Wesley 5 Withey

Next year will be the true test for Coach Self. With this small of a bench, Royce, Naadir will definitely get more pt/development. Hopefully Daniels & McLemore will end up on campus this year too.

Seriously lacking a big who will be able to run the floor. Somebody is out there for the taking. Heck, Derrick Williams of UofA was not even top 100. Diamond in the rough....find one, please Coach Self.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

BlownJay..I have enjoyed your posts but the last thing I want to thing about is next year. I don't think I will ever invest the emotional commitment again and I'm just a fan. I can't even imagine how the team and coaches are feeling..I know they must also be dealing w/thoughts of letting everyone down besides losing after all the work they put into this year. I really like these kids and I hope they also remember what they achieved. I don't know why it seems we are jinxed in the NCAA Tourney.

Ron Franklin 8 years, 7 months ago

Hear ya. I invest in it every year. Always will. Sometimes, usually, I guess it ends painfully. But sure have a lot of fun watching the games and getting on these boards and reading about our beloved Hawks. Thinking about the future has always been a favorite of mine too.

Craig Colgin 8 years, 7 months ago

Is Trob really gone? Really? Im not saying that he isn't good enough, or that he is. But really with this season goin the way it did for the young man, I just can't see him being a high enough pick to go. Without the tragedys and the injury maybe. But he just hasn't had the opportunity in my opinion to show he can significantly contribute on a consistent enough basis to be drafted. Atleast not high enough to actually help his family that much financially.

Either way, please don't post that lineup again, it's far too ugly right now to think about.

Ron Franklin 8 years, 7 months ago

haha, it was really sad, wasn't it! putting Wesley in...fraid not.

word on campus is that he is leaving. also, i hear there is nearly 2 million in Jaylas account, so I really can't understand why he needs to go now, if it's just for the money. and it obviously is.

Craig Colgin 8 years, 7 months ago

After doing some research, I have found that it is more likely that Trob, the Twins, and Selby all go rather than stay. Im afraid if this happens, there are 3 words we may come to know next year. national invitational tournament

Everyone please be thankful for this season, I don't think we want this kind of humility lesson.

hawksince51 8 years, 7 months ago

Agree that T-Rob is not ready and should not be a first round pick. And neither is Selby nor should he be first round. But I never underestimate the stupidity of the NBA to "draft on potential." Look at Julian Wright and X Henry being high first round choices. I'm sure the NBA Scouts are impressed by T-Rob's body and athletic moves but he is a very raw talent. In the case of Selby, I have no clue what would make him a first, or even second round pick, but nothing will surprise me there either. Just with the loss of the Seniors and Twins, next year would appear to be a really challenging year for the coaching staff. Without T-Rob...???

ajhk 8 years, 7 months ago

I hope there are some good defections out there. How about Rocky Top? Do they have any bigs that might want to come to a real school?

It'll be interesting. I'm sure Bill is already on it.

KansasComet 8 years, 7 months ago

Losing sucks! We have great players at Kansas, and we will be fine next year, no matter who stays or who goes. What is for sure is that 3 players are definitely gone. I think we already have fine players on the bench at KU. I like Royce Woolridge, I think he is an excellent young guard. I like Travis Releford, given a chance, I think he is a real difference maker. I like Withey, I think he is a player that needs to feel like the team needs him in order for him to excel. Give a player scrub minutes and you will probably get scrub results.

This year is so over, time to get ready for the next. Everyone may not leave, but if they do, we will reload and get back after it again.

hawksince51 8 years, 7 months ago

I agree that Withey did not get a chance to show much this year and I hope you are right that he has potential. I also like Releford and felt he could have helped shut down VCU 3-pt. shooters in the first half because he is longer and quicker than Reed and Brady. I have not understood why he has not been in our rotation since recovering from his injury. When I look at the recruiting classes of the Big 12 South teams, I do have my concerns about how we will fare against UT, Baylor and OSU whom we will play twice next year.

Craig Colgin 8 years, 7 months ago

While I don't want anybody to leave early, I must agree with what another poster said. The pressure to win next season will be unbelievable, the National Championship or bust aura that will consume these boards and the Jayhawk team next season should everyone return will be ridiculous. They may not play a game loose all year. And so the viscious cycle continues. But you know what. It's life, some people prefer the ferris wheel, that just goes round and round. Me? Im a rollercoaster guy!!!

Craig Colgin 8 years, 7 months ago

Imagine my deflation, coming to this site today of all days, and not finding my favorite avatar next to ralsters name. Oh, when will the sadness end?

Jhawk59 8 years, 7 months ago

Holy crap! I was 17 as a freshman. Was Selby held back?

Jason Musick 8 years, 7 months ago

If VCU wins the National Championship.

Will they get an asterisk by their name "SAYING FILL IN TEAM"?

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

Lots of discussion post-game. I wanted to summarize my thoughts and would be interested in what others have to say here. My thoughts below are related to failures in March. My assumption is that the ultimate goal is to win the national championship, and that is what you build to. For those that are happy with this season, you should read something else. A 21-point salute.

  1. Winning Every Game: I have said many times here that coach Self seems preoccupied with winning every regular season game. That may seem like a silly statement – of course he wants to win every game, right? But such an approach, as it gravitates to the extreme, can cause a coach to disregard player development, to disregard preparation for March, to focus only on the here and now without due regard to the big picture, without regard to March. That is, choosing players that he is comfortable with. Choosing players that satisfy what he needs to win the game at hand. But what does that do? That causes him to neglect those that may not serve that immediate purpose, may be more risky at the time (to win that particular game), but players that in the end, have more upside and diversity.
  2. Conservative Coach: At his heart, coach Self is perhaps the most conservative coach many of us will encounter. There is very little he has ever done than can be termed “risky” or “taking a chance.” Conservative coaches go with what they are comfortable with. They run the same schemes, they characterize their team as one thing, they stick to philosophies no matter what the group of players. Players fit their system. The don’t adapt to the players. Conservative coaches are averse to risk .. they would rather limit the downside as opposed to rolling the dice and shooting for a higher upside. This suits coach Self to a T. It is his being.
  3. Defensive Coaches Are Conservative: At the heart of his conservative nature is his defense first philosophy. It is tried, it is true. It is a simple approach. It does not require risk. The defensive coach wants to manage the game. The defensive coach does not want too many variables. If he can stop the other team, then he limits the downside. Always having a chance to win. It is Marty Schottenheimer football. It is Bill Self basketball.
  4. Coach Self Is A Conservative Defensive Coach: When you look at KU’s approach to defense, it too is a conservative approach. It does not involve risk. Those that take chances to create turnovers are many times punished. Those that work outside of the scheme don’t play. Those that fail in any aspect of the defensive philosophy receive very few minutes. Perhaps most telling is that Coach Self does not trap the short corner or the post to create a turnover. He traps it to stop a player that we can’t control. His defensive philosophy is reactionary, it does not seek to create offense, it seeks to prevent it. Unlike the pressing team, defense does not create offense.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

HEM,

Good to see you go long to start the off season. I will do some point/counter-point and some agreement.

  1. Player Dev.--we read this differently, as usual. I say he tried to develop 10 players this pre conference season and played 9 much of the conference season, before shortening the bench to 8 down the stretch. Ten is a lot of players to prepare in pre-conference. I also say that whenever back-ups improved "on the floor," they got more minutes and whenever they got worse they got fewer minutes. I don't see a problem with that approach. This year more than ever it seemed apparent that many guys played themselves out of minutes, while others played themselves into minutes. When Selby arrived, he was given Brady's job. Josh's injury and slump let Brady win it back. Self had no one better than Tyrel at the two. The moment EJ began to play well, he saw 30mpg and then 15-20 mpg, when TT came back form suspension. Player development all seemed pretty rational and effective to me.

  2. I see Self as a gambler on psychology and consistent, even a bit too rigid philosophically with regards to Eddie's philosophy of 70 point take what they give us. Self gambles sending his teams out flat for some games, to amp them up for the next games and taking a chance on getting upset in one game to maximize his chance to win both. This doesn't seem conservative to me. Self seems to me to be cut from the same cloth as Wooden, Haskins, Al Maguire, Hartman, Eddie, Knight, Consonants, Kruger, and the great Philly coaches. Each man had a philosophy corner-stoned on defense first, most claimed Hank Iba as a huge influence, and all varied offensive sets but made use of clearly defined impact and glue roles. You could add Dean and Roy to this list, too. They just did not emphasize defense quite as much and tried to dictate running. If these guys are conservative, then Self is conservative.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. Ted Owens to me fit the bill of a basketball equivalent of Marty Shottenheimer football, but not Bill Self. Perhaps if you told me the coaches that seem to you to be liberal, offense first coaches, I would better be able to see your distinction about conservative, defense first coaches.

  2. I have two categories of defensive coaches: those that funnel the ball to the free throw lane vs those that funnel the ball to the baseline. Self belongs to the former group, as do must of the coaches I cited above as influenced by Iba. Roy and Dean like to funnel to baseline and sideline. The former group likes to funnel you into an area where a lot of people can help and strip. Roy and Dean like to use the baseline and sideline as 6th defenders. All defense first coaches like to get stop and some like to get strips...to wreak havoc. Self likes stops and strips. Shaka smart likes stops and strips. How much you emphasize strips and scoring in transition depends on whether you play through perimeter players, or bigs most. Self's 08 ring team played through perimeter players most, big secondarily though they were more nearly balanced that his other teams. So: the 08 team wreaked havoc in order to get in transition and score. This year's and last year's teams and Simien's team played through bigs. When your offensive and defensive strength is your bigs, you play defense for stops and strips, but only occassionally seek transition baskets when wide open. It is always better to convert a stop/strip to points with bigs for such teams than to gamble a lot on transition baskets. So: material determines whether he plays for stops and strips to force transition baskets, or to go down, play half court sets and convert through bigs.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Maybe Ted Owens at the beginning of the his career but certainly not the latter part. I would think Roy fits better if you only count his time at KU. The 96-97 team is still the best team imo that I have seen since my long ago days at KU. I give the 2002-03 second billing and 07-08 third.

This years team I am not ready to rank..I want to say 4th but i need to let my emotions return to normal and not affect my judgment. Which is highly suspect to begin with : )

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 5. Coach Self and Coach Williams Are Polar Opposites: As an aside, there is no doubt, Roy and coach Self are opposites. We have seen both of the near extremes here. Roy will just as soon shoot in the first 10 seconds of shot clock, understanding that misses are not as big of a deal because he is creating more possessions due to his up tempo style. Self cringes at that. 6. Offensive Conservatism: Coach Self is as conservative offensively as he is defensively. He feeds the post. He values every possession. He strictly constructs the movement of the ball. He flips out on every missed shot or out of control play. He has little patience for creativity. Really, his overreactions to poor shots is a reflection of his approach. He micro-manages every possession after the fact. It is about getting the perfect look. 7. Brady Morningstar: Brady became a lightning rod because he was at the heart of coach Self’s conservative philosophy when it comes to coaching. Brady was and always has been the safe choice. The guy who won’t make many mistakes, who will surely focus on his teammates, who busts his butt on defense. “Glue” some would say. Many on the other side of the Brady debate than I didn’t understand the disagreements with Brady in the lineup. Maybe they do now. The core of my position on Brady was that he did not have requisite upside to deserve his minutes. My position was always that we needed to look toward March. To develop a player that had more overall attributes. Who was more versatile and diverse. That Brady’s attributes could be replaced by someone who could do more on the court overall. Travis Releford, for example. A 6-6 3 man with excellent defensive skills, who could guard the big 3 player, one that could hit the 3, could slash to the basket, who was more athletic, who could develop into a better player by March. I also felt that we would have a game where Brady’s simple physical limitations would kill this team. VCU was it. But I was more concerned with a better VCU type team .. a top 20 caliber team that would expose him. Where a few three balls that Brady would make wouldn’t matter. Or with physical team that would overmatch him. Like Michigan St. in 2009. One might make similar arguments as they relate to Reed. But Reed was hurt, and it showed. But Reed played 34 minutes “with a rock in his shoe.” Seriously. 8. The VCU Game Was Releford’s Calling: No way I could have predicted such a perfect storm. But the VCU game was Releford’s calling. We had no one on the defensive side to match the size of their 3. We were sorely lacking in athleticism vs. their excellent athletes with Brady and an injured Tyrel. And we did not have a slasher outside of Tyshawn. Jaybate made the excellent point before the VCU game .. that Releford was made for this situation. Excellent observation. He was, and he stayed on the bench.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. Agreed. And Roy is the adult child of an alcholic, where as Self is the adult child of a high school coach and a school teacher mother. Roy emphasizes family and team as one, because family is what he never had. Self emphasizes team and family as separate but important, because he grew up with both. Roy plays a fast game, because he is a little guy, like Dean, who learned to run around trouble. Self is big, broad shouldered former two guard who muscled, because he wasn't quite as quick and athletic as the long and athletics. He loves the long and athletics, because he envies that morphology, but he also like the tough guys like Mario Little, because he identifies with them. But, truth be told, Roy's system is more rigid that Self's. Roy has been playing pretty much the same offense and defenses since the beginning. Same traps, etc. His genius has been to experiment chiefly with ways of increasing trips in search of more higher percentage shots. His half court motion offense never changes much. It is what Dean developed. Same with his defense. Same long and lean tendency in body morphologies, except for when he took over Matt's players and the ocassional Paul Pierce outlier. Self's team's have varied much more in the way they play and who they play through. With Cole, they played 90 percent pick and role and played heavily through PG and Center. With the twins, they play through the twins in a 60/40 split between hi-lo and pick and roll. Simien's team played through Simien, a 4 playing low post 5. Think they played hi-lo mostly. The ring team basically played a little bit of everything.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Wow..you are really over thinking this. Roy learned and improved on the UNC style of play under Dean Smith...alcoholic parents had nothing to do with it. Dean learned and improved the style of play under Allen..most changes were probably more due to rule changes than any Napoleonic influence. Self learned from Eddie Sutton with some influence from Larry Brown. These coaching trees are well established and where all their styles were born and each made adjustments as their confidence and players dictated.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. Kind of dealt with this in 5.

7.Brady (and Tyrel) became lightening rods for persons that got used to Self playing a lot of African American perimeter players for a lot of years, and could not accept that Caucasian American players could shoot and jump and defend and feed the post, too. Once Self said Reed could go 42 vertical, even though it had little to do with his strengths as a glue player, suddenly narrow minded thinking about Reed began to subside, especially because Reed began to play so well. Brady could always sky. He just never had good aerial balance, or big enough hands, to be a real acrobat and stuffer. But again, he was an excellent defender, post feeder and trey shooter, and playing glue, so his bounce did not matter much anyway. Brady was such a terrific glue three that his first year starting the team won 26 games and went to the Sweet 16 in a rebuilding year. His second season, he was so good at playing the 3 that he still garnered 20 minutes a game splitting time with an OAD that became a first rounder on a 30+ win team ranked first most of the season. His third season he was so good that, despite a horrendous slump that eventually cost him most of his PT, and competing against an OAD and probable NBA draft choice, he he still got 15-20 minutes per game, and when the OAD got injured, and then struggled, he beat him out and played 30-35 minutes a game on a 30+win team that reached the Elite Eight. Brady is really an exceptional player to have earned split time with Xavier Henry and beat out Josh Selby, especially with a coach who gave the OADs every chance to start and completely resign him to the bench. Frankly, he is amazing. Self has a history of being absolutely ruthless and pragmatic, when it comes to making choices about who gets PT and who does not. When the dust settled on Brady's career, he started and played 30+ minutes per game his first starting season, he earned a split with an NBA body, and beat out another NBA body. He's one of the fiercest competitors, with the all the basic skills a glue player needs, among all of Self's players. RR was the better stripper and on ball defender, because he was stronger, but Brady was far the better shooter and better help defender.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. We agree that Releford would have been a good match-up on the VCU three, but as has turned out so often in Brady's career, he handled his man so well defensively (the guy only got 9 points for the game) that Self did not need to go to a back up except to rest Brady and in hopes of geting some offensive spark on a night Brady was not hitting. Self chose Josh Selby, probably because he thinks Selby is even more athletic than Travis, I guess. I certainly would have tried Releford to see if we could get some offensive spark out of the three with a taller player. But something seemed to go sour between Self and Releford regarding playing with pain back when Releford was slow to willing to resume play. Self basically pitted injured Josh and injured Travis against each other and implied they were both pussies for not playing injured. Selby rose to the challenge first, strapped on the boot, and played through a flipping stress reaction. Self is a big play through pain guy for reasons I do not agree with. On the other hand, it might be that Self has been protecting Travis's ankle for next year, because he is coming back and Josh is probably not. Hard to say for sure.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. We agree that Releford would have been a good match-up on the VCU three, but as has turned out so often in Brady's career, he handled his man so well defensively (the guy only got 9 points for the game) that Self did not need to go to a back up except to rest Brady and in hopes of geting some offensive spark on a night Brady was not hitting. Self chose Josh Selby, probably because he thinks Selby is even more athletic than Travis, I guess. I certainly would have tried Releford to see if we could get some offensive spark out of the three with a taller player. But something seemed to go sour between Self and Releford regarding playing with pain back when Releford was slow to willing to resume play. Self basically pitted injured Josh and injured Travis against each other and implied they were both pussies for not playing injured. Selby rose to the challenge first, strapped on the boot, and played through a flipping stress reaction. Self is a big play through pain guy for reasons I do not agree with. On the other hand, it might be that Self has been protecting Travis's ankle for next year, because he is coming back and Josh is probably not. Hard to say for sure.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 9. Prep Needed: But was Releford ready? I say no. Releford was not as ready as he should have been. And this goes to the core of Self’s coaching approach. He disregards March for immediate gratification of a league win, or a non-con victory. He refuses to develop players. To put them in crunch time situations. To permit them to fail. To permit them to put his team in a worse position. To permit them to .. hold your breath here .. to permit them to actually cost us a win. Why should he risk a game? Very simple .. to permit them to grow as a player, and to permit him to learn who actually is the best player. Releford is a better player right now than Morningstar. Self hitched his wagon to Brady, and 32 minutes later, poof. And he hitched it to an injured Reed. Same thing. Poof. We were out-athleted by VCU. 10. This Is Easy: Anyone that thinks this is hard has simply not coached. From the little league coach that lets a kid pitch who is horrible, and lets him get experience to develop, to the high school football coach that lets the sophomore quarterback play over the senior because he has more talent and will make the team better come state playoff time, it is done all the time. It is pure fiction to think that there is some difference between D-1 basketball and other levels when it comes to commitment to developing players. The difference is pressure and level of play. How many NFL teams play the younger, inexperienced QB to get him experience, so he can take his lumps? Happens at every level. There is pressure to win. And whether a coach .. coach Self .. is willing to stomach the risk associated with such an approach. Coach Self would still be playing Brett Favre and would not have switched to Aaron Rodgers.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. I think you are accurate here in describing what Self values most. He wants to win the conference most...more than getting guys ready for the Madness. Self is kind of paradoxical about this, too. He coaches during conference, as if winning and guarantying a bid with the highest seed possible is everything, then he coaches the tournament saying it is not as important, but still shortens his bench and goes for the wins playing his best players big minutes in a grueling 3 game in 3 day format. Why I call him paradoxical is that then in the Madness he says match-ups are way more important than seeding.

If he thinks match-ups are more important than seeding, then it seems that he ought to favor your approach, for sure in the conference tournament and probably at least a little in the conference. That is, he ought to trade off a win or two in order to develop more players for the Madness. If Travis Releford and Jeff Withey were more developed for the Madness, then we might have gotten some points out of the three on a night when Brady and Selby could not hit. We might also have gotten more big help in the paint, enough that the Twins wouldn't have gotten so pooped on a night when TRob got fouled up.

I would certainly lean you way on this HEM, and perhaps Self is at least conflicted about it. Coaches at this level like to win more than they like to breath. Maybe Self is so competitive he just can't bring himself to do what his head tells him he ought to do.

Hank Stram of the old Kansas City Chiefs was much like what you are talking about. His trusted players nearly had to die before he would develop a younger player. He tried to win every pre season game.

Winning can become an obsession and I'm not joking here. Trying to win every game can become an obsession that supercedes trying to win the big games. Perhaps Self might look into this a little.

At the same time, however, coaches like Wooden, Knight, Consonants, and others have been fanatics about winning every game and never tried trade off wins to develop players late in the season for the Madness, and they have been very successful.

Regardless, it is an interesting point you have raised.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 11. Boxscores: The boxscore tells everything. Find me an example of a comparable boxscore to the VCU game this season. Where the starters all play 32+ minutes. Unbelievable. The only comparable boxscore is the Texas game in KC, but Kieff played only 22 minutes. Those that say coach Self choked are being harsh. And that is somewhat of an inflammatory word. But find a better one. Coach Self’s handling of substitutions, his reversion to conservatism, his constriction of the rotation, demonstrates what occurred. He got way tight. He got taken out of his normal game. He panicked. His thought processes were affected by the sheer enormity of the situation. The word is choke. Do you think the players sensed that? It is no different than Reed and Morningstar and their shooting. The enormity of the situation got the better of them. It is no different than Sherron and Tyshawn vs. UNI. Substituting as you have before, liberal use of subs, permits your starters to relax on the bench. To refocus. It is coaching 101. Sorry for those that think Self is God, but he blew it. Your high school basketball coach will tell you the same thing. And sometimes, you catch lightning in a bottle with the subs. They have to have the chance. Self tightened up in a tight game.
12. EJ: Elijah Johnson is another example that demonstrates Self’s choke. Think about all the praise. Think about every positive thing Self said about EJ down the stretch. Think about EJ’s play, and his defense. Self’s words meant nothing. And I predicted it. It was all talk. I predicted it because I know Self. In the end, Self reverted to his security blankets .. Reed, Morningstar, and Taylor. EJ played a total of 6 minutes vs. VCU (and 4 minutes vs. Texas). A 40% 3 point shooter. 6 freaking minutes. A guy who could give us a different look. But no. Too risky. Did anyone notice that neither Reed, nor Brady, wanted to shoot in the last 3 minutes? 13. Ego: Most of us give coach Self a free pass. He’s our guy. But tell me when you have heard him ever take the blame? Wouldn’t it have been nice to hear him get to the podium and say that it was his fault (whether it was or not)? To say that he didn’t have his team prepared. That he was the one who was ultimately responsible. Again, whether true or untrue. What we heard is coach Self saying our transition defense was poor, etc. That is disappointing. Be a man.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 14. Preparation/Being Tight: Let’s get right to this .. was this team prepared for VCU? Obviously not. And this goes to two levels. First, was our gameplan and prep solid? I don’t know. All I know is that VCU was not a mystery. Watch them play. But there is no way of knowing if the players were properly prepped on the X’s and O’s. My guess is that they were. But why did VCU get so many open opportunities? Guys, VCU shot less than 40% from the field. It’s not like they pulled a Villanova on Georgetown. Did you notice that .. less than 40%. Guess what … UNI shot a measly 40%, too. But more importantly, second, were we mentally prepared .. I mean emotionally ready? No way. This goes back to Bucknell, this goes back to Bradley, this goes back to Davidson, this goes back to UNI, this goes back to Boston U., and this ruined our season vs. VCU. For whatever reason, coach Self creates a tightness in his teams in situations where they should win. We see it in the regular season. We see it in the well accepted characteristic of Self’s teams .. we play down to our opponent. That is a coaching characteristic, too. We blow out UNC days after nearly choking one off vs. Davidson. Sure, there are exceptions. We pummeled Richmond, right? All I know is that there is a clear and undeniable pattern. And coach Self’s teams play down to their opponents. And guess what, they play up to opponents, too. That tells me something. It is coaching. 15. A Coach’s Job: It is a coach’s job to have his team ready. To create loose play. You hear about coaches who have the kids play a touch football game, or who play an X-box tournament, or who go spit off a bridge into the river, who do something to get their minds off of the situation. To relax them. What did coach Self do? He put copies of the UNI Sports Illustrated in their lockers. Absolutely stupid move. Sorry, but dumb as dirt. You have inspired constriction and worry. Look, if you have a team that is a focused team, who has blinders, who is mentally tough, who are men .. the UNI Sports Illustrated could be a focuser. But you don’t. You have a team that is not mentally tough to begin with, that has multiple mental blunders from DUIs, to girl friend flaps, to assaults, to stupid tweets, to fights with the football team, to things going on under the bleachers at Allen, to dumb elbows, etc. And you have a team that is comprised totally, but for Selby, of guys who yacked it last season vs. UNI, right? I remember Quinn Snyder saying that he couldn’t coach effort. Amazing. This is amazing too. Coach Self has failed multiple times in simply relaxing his team. The proof is not in the loss. The proof is in who we have lost to, how. Any difference between UNI and VCU? Poor shooting to the degree we saw in both games just doesn’t happen. It is created, or better yet, inspired. On the cusp of the final four, the great 2008 team played tight as a drum vs. Davidson. One shot away from another collapse, but it didn’t go in.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 14. Preparation/Being Tight: Let’s get right to this .. was this team prepared for VCU? Obviously not. And this goes to two levels. First, was our gameplan and prep solid? I don’t know. All I know is that VCU was not a mystery. Watch them play. But there is no way of knowing if the players were properly prepped on the X’s and O’s. My guess is that they were. But why did VCU get so many open opportunities? Guys, VCU shot less than 40% from the field. It’s not like they pulled a Villanova on Georgetown. Did you notice that .. less than 40%. Guess what … UNI shot a measly 40%, too. But more importantly, second, were we mentally prepared .. I mean emotionally ready? No way. This goes back to Bucknell, this goes back to Bradley, this goes back to Davidson, this goes back to UNI, this goes back to Boston U., and this ruined our season vs. VCU. For whatever reason, coach Self creates a tightness in his teams in situations where they should win. We see it in the regular season. We see it in the well accepted characteristic of Self’s teams .. we play down to our opponent. That is a coaching characteristic, too. We blow out UNC days after nearly choking one off vs. Davidson. Sure, there are exceptions. We pummeled Richmond, right? All I know is that there is a clear and undeniable pattern. And coach Self’s teams play down to their opponents. And guess what, they play up to opponents, too. That tells me something. It is coaching. 15. A Coach’s Job: It is a coach’s job to have his team ready. To create loose play. You hear about coaches who have the kids play a touch football game, or who play an X-box tournament, or who go spit off a bridge into the river, who do something to get their minds off of the situation. To relax them. What did coach Self do? He put copies of the UNI Sports Illustrated in their lockers. Absolutely stupid move. Sorry, but dumb as dirt. You have inspired constriction and worry. Look, if you have a team that is a focused team, who has blinders, who is mentally tough, who are men .. the UNI Sports Illustrated could be a focuser. But you don’t. You have a team that is not mentally tough to begin with, that has multiple mental blunders from DUIs, to girl friend flaps, to assaults, to stupid tweets, to fights with the football team, to things going on under the bleachers at Allen, to dumb elbows, etc. And you have a team that is comprised totally, but for Selby, of guys who yacked it last season vs. UNI, right? I remember Quinn Snyder saying that he couldn’t coach effort. Amazing. This is amazing too. Coach Self has failed multiple times in simply relaxing his team. The proof is not in the loss. The proof is in who we have lost to, how. Any difference between UNI and VCU? Poor shooting to the degree we saw in both games just doesn’t happen. It is created, or inspired. On the cusp of the final four, the great 2008 team played tight as a drum vs. Davidson. One shot away from another collapse, but it didn’t go in.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 16. Selby: Without a single doubt in my mind, Self completely mismanaged Josh Selby. Top player coming in .. at least top 10 .. and this is all you get from him? Look, the guy you saw vs. USC was Josh Selby. Until Self deconstructed him. That was not what he wanted. Coach Self did not want a go-to guy. Self destroyed him. Why? Because he threatened his system. This is subject to debate, of course. I am sorry, but what fool plays Brady Morningstar over Josh Selby? Only one. You find a place for Selby. You don’t find reasons not to play him. And you can point to Selby’s play, or a turnover, or whatever. But I can point to the fact that only one coach coached Selby this season .. Bill Self. Look at Calipari. Look what he has done with freshmen. Many of them. Back to some topics above, he gave Selby little chance to develop, was impatient, benched him multiple times … why? Because Selby didn’t fit into the little box Self had premade for him. Selby was much like the Army recruit who is torn down, to be built in the mold of the system … but Selby was never rebuilt. He remained torn down. The results are undeniable. 17. Final Fours: One final four in 8 seasons. Think about that. Coach Self has coached us to 4 number one seeds. 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. Amazing regular season feats. But only one ended in a final four. North Carolina has had 13 number one seeds and 8 reached the final four. Duke has had 12, and 6 reached the final four. Kentucky 4 of 10 #1 seeds. Self, 1 of 4. Percentages aren’t even close. 18. Patterns: Look at our losses with the four number one seeds in Self’s tenure. With two, we lost in the elite 8. And with one, we lost in the round of 32. But look at our losses. Against UCLA, we score a season low 55 points in 2007. Against UNI, we score our second lowest point total of the season. Against VCU, we score our season low point total. And just for fun, we scored our season low point total vs. Davidson in the 2010 Elite 8. Patterns mean something. This pattern means something. It is the second game of a weekend in each case. But why the low point totals? We know why. Don’t we? Coach Self creates tightness, or a lack of “looseness.”

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 16. Selby: Without a single doubt in my mind, Self completely mismanaged Josh Selby. Top player coming in .. at least top 10 .. and this is all you get from him? Look, the guy you saw vs. USC was Josh Selby. Until Self deconstructed him. That was not what he wanted. Coach Self did not want a go-to guy. Self destroyed him. Why? Because he threatened his system. This is subject to debate, of course. I am sorry, but what fool plays Brady Morningstar over Josh Selby? Only one. You find a place for Selby. You don’t find reasons not to play him. And you can point to Selby’s play, or a turnover, or whatever. But I can point to the fact that only one coach coached Selby this season .. Bill Self. Look at Calipari. Look what he has done with freshmen. Many of them. Back to some topics above, he gave Selby little chance to develop, was impatient, benched him multiple times … why? Because Selby didn’t fit into the little box Self had premade for him. Selby was much like the Army recruit who is torn down, to be built in the mold of the system … but Selby was never rebuilt. He remained torn down. The results are undeniable. 17. Final Fours: One final four in 8 seasons. Think about that. Coach Self has coached us to 4 number one seeds. 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. Amazing regular season feats. But only one ended in a final four. North Carolina has had 13 number one seeds and 8 reached the final four. Duke has had 12, and 6 reached the final four. Kentucky 4 of 10 #1 seeds. Self, 1 of 4. Percentages aren’t even close. 18. Patterns: Look at our losses with the four number one seeds in Self’s tenure. With two, we lost in the elite 8. And with one, we lost in the round of 32. But look at our losses. Against UCLA, we score a season low 55 points in 2007. Against UNI, we score our second lowest point total of the season. Against VCU, we score our season low point total. And just for fun, we scored our season low point total vs. Davidson in the 2010 Elite 8. Patterns mean something. This pattern means something. It is the second game of a weekend in each case. But why the low point totals? We know why. Don’t we? Coach Self creates tightness, or a lack of “looseness.”

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

  1. Selby: Without a single doubt in my mind, Self completely mismanaged Josh Selby. Top player coming in .. at least top 10 .. and this is all you get from him? Look, the guy you saw vs. USC was Josh Selby. Until Self deconstructed him. That was not what he wanted. Coach Self did not want a go-to guy. Self destroyed him. Why? Because he threatened his system. This is subject to debate, of course. I am sorry, but what fool plays Brady Morningstar over Josh Selby? Only one. You find a place for Selby. You don’t find reasons not to play him. And you can point to Selby’s play, or a turnover, or whatever. But I can point to the fact that only one coach coached Selby this season .. Bill Self. Look at Calipari. Look what he has done with freshmen. Many of them. Back to some topics above, he gave Selby little chance to develop, was impatient, benched him multiple times … why? Because Selby didn’t fit into the little box Self had premade for him. Selby was much like the Army recruit who is torn down, to be built in the mold of the system … but Selby was never rebuilt. He remained torn down. The results are undeniable.
  2. Final Fours: One final four in 8 seasons. Think about that. Coach Self has coached us to 4 number one seeds. 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. Amazing regular season feats. But only one ended in a final four. North Carolina has had 13 number one seeds and 8 reached the final four. Duke has had 12, and 6 reached the final four. Kentucky 4 of 10 #1 seeds. Self, 1 of 4. Percentages aren’t even close.
  3. Patterns: Look at our losses with the four number one seeds in Self’s tenure. With two, we lost in the elite 8. And with one, we lost in the round of 32. But look at our losses. Against UCLA, we score a season low 55 points in 2007. Against UNI, we score our second lowest point total of the season. Against VCU, we score our season low point total. And just for fun, we scored our season low point total vs. Davidson in the 2010 Elite 8. Patterns mean something. This pattern means something. It is the second game of a weekend in each case. But why the low point totals? We know why. Don’t we? Coach Self creates tightness, or a lack of “looseness.”

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

(cont) 19. Proof In The Pudding: The best example is the Boston U. game. Seriously, Boston U. was a pud team. Sad. And we lead by four at half? And our players say they were tight coming in. See the stupid use of the UNI Sports Illustrated cover, for example. And Coach Self acts dumbfounded, insisting “they said they were loose.” And acting like he didn’t understand. This, my friends, is a flaw. Couple that with is inability or unwillingness to prepare his team with eye on March, not an eye on winning every regular season game, and you have an Achilles’ heel. 20. In sum, we have a coach who is fanatically focused on winning every regular season game; who values lack of negative over potential upside; who refuses to adequately develop his talent with an eye toward March; who when March arrives is unable to relax his team; and who when March arrives becomes tight himself in the manner in which he handles the team. Couple that with a coach that refuses to take any blame for the failures, and you have … VCU, Bucknell, Bradley, UNI … one final four in 8 seasons. And only one final four to show for 4 number one seeds. 21. Note: Reminder, we are Kansas. We aren’t Pitt getting a number one seed, or Ohio St., or Wake Forest, or some other non-Elite program. We are to be judged in the same breath with the Dukes, the North Carolinas, the Kentuckys. If your goals are mediocre, your achievements will be mediocre. We are an elite program .. you become elite by the final four banners you hang. That is how elite is defined. And National Championships. We can’t just enjoy the ride. For if we do, we are no longer Elite.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

BlownJay,

As we learned from Coach Self this season, and two seasons ago in Cole's and Brady's first years as starters, Coach Self is at his best when scrambling to piece things together.

I'm very optimistic about the perimeter next season. It is the front court that will be a challenge.

First, consider the back court.

Perimeter:

Tyshawn, EJ and Travis constitute an exceptional perimeter. Each one will be both physically and mentally mature by next year. EJ could easily grow one more inch and add 10 pounds. Each one is a tremendous athlete now over the teething pains of learning to play D1. Each one is going to be a great defender by next season. Each one appears capable, after this season, of shooting 40% from trey, which is the magic number. Each one is capable of impacting at any moment. Most teams we will play next season will have only one or two players at most that can make a living in Trifectaville. Frankly, these three will give us one of the best starting perimeters in the country.

Now for perimeter back-ups and this is assuming the cat drags nothing in.

Royce is going to be a quality back-up at the 2.

Nadiir will be a quality back-up at the 1, because we won't need him to shoot and we won't need him to do much but fill about 10-15 minutes, distribute and play d.

Josh would be a great 3, 2, or 1 next year, but I agree he will probably leave. I don't know if he will go overseas for a year, or straight to the NBA. He really did not do very well when he came back, and he got plenty of 15 minute windows to do something. You have to figure Carmelo's biz manager might be able to place him with the Knicks right now. I know Josh is a potentially great guard, but I just don't know if he showed enough this season to make the NBA take him now. And injury at 20 has made real that he needs to make money now, not later.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 7 months ago

Just curious..but how do you know Royce or Nadir will be quality back-ups? I hope you are right but without any evidence, I will wait and see first.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

I have suspected all along that the underlying reason Self went with Tyshawn and EJ all along this season at the point had to be because Josh would never promise to stay to be next year's PG. I have always figured that the deal Josh and Self struck was something like this: I was going to be a franchise PG for Pearl at UTenn, but I had to bail because he was going down. I decided to come to KU, because I thought if I gotta spend a year in college, I might as well play for a team that has a shot at a ring. Self probably told him from the beginning something like you can start at the 1 if you will promise to stay two years, you can back-up at the 1 if you only want to guaranty one year, or you can start at the 3 if you want to guaranty only one year. Josh took starting at the 3. And that was how it was going to play until the injury changed everything and Josh never got his gun back.

(Note: About Josh's mom leaving, while it is suggestive of what you say, it could still be a false positive until one knows where and why she is moving. Maybe she fell in love with some one out of town and trusts her son with Self. Maybe she's just moving to KC. Or maybe she's leaving, because he is, but who knows? I suppose there ought to be a WatchTheMothers.com recruiting web site that does nothing but track where parents go to forecast whether the kid is jumping, or not.)

Conner Teahan will be a question mark at back-up at the 3 until he plays some, but I suspect he will see 10-15 mpg next year, unless Self drags in a good 3 recruit. Self did not throw Conner a scholie and a shirt for the heck of it.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

I have been out on a limb since mid season saying Jordan Jueneman might surprise next year and become a credible 10-minute back-up. Jueneman has a great trey gun and he seems to be tireless. This tireless quality will be a big advantage next year, because Self is almost certain to adapt next year's team to an endurance approach like Shaka Smart's VCU team; i.e., de-emphasizing heavy weight gain, emphasizing hyper conditioning, a shorter bench, players with bigger bones and muscle up top, but less emphasis on lower body strength, and waaay more fouling at the rim rather than bump and grind contact from the waist down.

IMHO, fouling at the rim will be the hot new beta version of XTReme Muscle that is apt to catch on, along with cheap shotting and tripping. Referees are letting the fouling of bigs around the rim go almost completely uncalled (especially when two defender go up and foul simultaneously), while refs are lamely trying to periodically call the bump and grind stuff. Jueneman could be a 10-15 minute guy in this scheme, because of his motor and his trey. Don't know if his feet are quick enough to defend, but if Tyrel Reed can develop as much quickness afoot as he did, hey, anything is possible.

Royce will be a solid back up for EJ at the 2.

Nadiir will give Self a solid distributor to go to spell Tyshawn. Royce will be a solid back-It will take him till December or January to get comfortable with the pace, but

Front Court: Gulp!

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

TRob: I am not sure why you think TRob will jump, or why the NBA will take him. TRob will want to jump, because he has looked into the injury abyss and knows a bag of bones in the hand is worth three bags in the bush with most of his family gone and his kid sister somewhat his responsibility. But despite his sharp improvement, he was a no show several times this season, has no face up game, little back to the basket, and he has a question mark knee that forced him to bounce entirely on one leg after the surgery. I believe TRob will stay.

Jeff Withey: I have no idea what to make of Withey at this point, except that Self decided he couldn't cut it this season, even though he said Withey would win them a game down the stretch. He didn't. My hunch is he's pretty good, when healthy, but still ravaged by a sickness, or a reaction to a weight gaining substance.

Self will certainly bring in two 6'8" players, whether they are any good, or not. He brought Quintrel Thomas in under similar circumstances; then appeared to run him, or have a falling out with Thomas. My wouldn't it be nice to have had Quintrel for VCU and for next season.

Self said something very telling when commenting on VCU and I think it may signal a change in his recruiting.

Self said that if you went shirts and skins in a gym you wouldn't be able to tell any difference between VCU's mid major recruits and Self's 5 star bunch.

Think about that for a second...about what he is referring to.

His highly recruited Morris Twins got outplayed by lower ranked VCU talent.

His highly recruited TRob got out played by lower ranked VCU talent.

His OAD freshman couldn't do anything against midmajor talent.

His long and athletic 4-5 star PG committee couldn't dominate against a 5'10" nobody.

His once highly ranked footer couldn't even stay on the floor.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 7 months ago

Jaybate .. you may not be checking this thread with the new articles .. but your mention of Self's comment on VCU talent vs. ours also caught my ear. I didn't mention it in my post, but my first reaction was that this was another way to deflect blame .. I might add it to my post if I re-post it today.

But your take on that is really interesting. I think he'll see his national championship team with all the recruiting stars and perhaps reassess. This team failed in the tournament .. and only the tournament .. for reasons unrelated to the recruiting stars. But great points above and below.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

His two lesser ranked kids from Kansas wound up beating out alot of highly recruited talent and had to play 30-35 mpg, because all the hot recruites didn't deliver.

Self has been working his butt off since he got to KU to recruit prestige talent coast to coast and he has recruited quite a bit of it, but five out of the last six years his prestige talent has gotten him early outs at the hands of mid majors with 4 year players. Except for his ring season, Self used to do about as well in the tournament with lesser talent at Tulsa and Illinois, as he has done with the marquis talent at KU.

Add to this that Self has increasingly been getting beaten out for recruits, and I do believe Self has finally had his fill of groveling after all the big time recruits.

I think Self is coming full circle to the idea of "give me a bunch of 4 year role players conditioned to the max that want to play hard and maybe one or two stars. I'm done going after all the top talent all the time. Anyone that wants to commit to Self fine. First come first serve. He wants a bunch of big, tough kids and screw all the prima donnas. No more sitting around waiting for press conferences for guys picking between three programs.

It may not happen quite as dramatically as I am describing here. A lot of players may keep listing KU, but I am beginning to think Nadiir Tharpe is the future. Are you a hard nosed kid that wants to commit right now? If so, then you've got a ride. I'm not waiting around for 5 stars. I might keep one ride open for a 5 star, but I've had the 5 stars and, while they get me to 30 plus wins a season, they are not cutting it at tournament time, and frankly, I'm interested in doing better in the tournament. I'm tired of being beaten by mature, cohesive mid majors full of 4 year players, when I have to wet nurse 5 stars who can't beat these kinds of teams their first three years, and who leave on me after one or two, whenever they can.

jaybate 8 years, 7 months ago

I keep telling people Self is a hard man and a pragmatist if ever there were one.

When he came to KU, he wanted to build a career recruiting great players.

But they don't stay around long enough to build really good teams.

And Self has not been able to recruit 4 to 5 five stars in a single season at KU, as Calipari does at UK in his AAU-Major program, which may finally get him a ring this season.

Self has been lucky to get 1 or 2 four/five stars per year. And even that has lead him into early outs 5 of 6 years.

Self has had a great run of W and L statements with his current strategy, but it is not leading him to the Final Four with any regularity. As I said, except for his one ring season, he is going no farther regularly in the Madness than he went at Illinois, or Tulsa. This has to be infuriating to a coach that recruits as relentlessly as Self does.

Why go on the road and spend all those nights away from his family, if he is going to keep going out early in the tournament? Why not just quick sign the same kids the mid majors are recruiting, keep them for four years, do the same as he is already doing, but with 5 fewer wins each regular season, and get to be with his family? All he needs is one impact player and a hot hand and he will go just as far as he did with the 08 team.

It is going to be interesting to watch how this plays out.

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