Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bill Self the slugger? KU coach hopes to hit recruiting grand slam

Kansas head coach coach Bill Self visits with reporters after a press conference Tuesday, March 29, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse. Self was asked about this year's tournament, his players and thoughts on next year's roster.

Kansas head coach coach Bill Self visits with reporters after a press conference Tuesday, March 29, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse. Self was asked about this year's tournament, his players and thoughts on next year's roster.


Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self

Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters on March 29, 2011, two days after KU's loss to VCU in the Elite Eight.

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Bill Self press conference: March 29, 2011

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Kansas head coach Bill Self addressed the media in his first press conference since the Jayhawks lost to VCU in the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

Basketball coach/baseball fan Bill Self says it’s time to step up to the plate and swing for the fences.

“We need to hit a home run ... one, but the bases need to be full,” Self, Kansas University’s eighth-year hoops coach, said, using a baseball analogy for the spring recruiting period.

“We need to sign two, three, four kids depending on if we do have departures. We obviously need to sign a couple of guards or wings,” he added.

“From a bigs standpoint, a lot depends on what our twins (Marcus, Markieff Morris) want to do (regarding NBA), and I haven’t even talked to them about it yet. We just need to be prepared.”

Self won’t be holding individual meetings with players until next week, after he returns from the Final Four in Houston.

“I think we’ll know sooner rather than later,” Self said, realizing players have until April 24 to declare for the NBA Draft. “If anybody is going to go pro or test (waters), I’d rather know now.

“I would much rather, in a perfect world, have the players we have return next year. We also have to be prepared to go out and sign some guys, and hopefully we are in position we can do that here in a couple of weeks if we need to.”

The Jayhawks, who have signed Naadir Tharpe, a 6-foot point guard from Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H., are expected to land a commitment this weekend from Ben McLemore, a 6-5 shooting guard from St. Louis. He will announce for KU or Missouri at Sunday’s NeXt All-America game in suburban Chicago.

Some others on the wish list include: DeAndre Daniels, 6-8 from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.; Braeden Anderson, 6-8 from Wilbraham and Monson Academy in Massachusetts; Stan Simpson, 6-10 from Bogan Juco in Chicago; Otto Porter, 6-9, from Scott County Central High in Sikeston, Mo.; and Jamari Traylor, 6-7 from IMG Academy.

Self, who has four scholarships to give, wouldn’t go into specifics about any Jayhawks who might have decisions to make regarding possibly turning pro.

He did say, “it would not surprise me if a couple of guys or even more put their name in the hat. It wouldn’t surprise me if they didn’t.”

He said because of the threat of an NBA lockout, “There’s a chance these kids could actually declare and not get paid. And an agent could say, ‘Well, you’re still closer to your second contract.’ Somebody else could say, ‘How do you make your second contract when you don’t get in the games?’

“If there is a lockout and the season doesn’t start until February, it’s hard for these young kids to go in when there’s no training camp to show they need to be playing games when the playoffs are only three months away. It could be a lost season for some of those guys because there is not going to be an opportunity to grow and learn and play through mistakes when you are playing five games that week and you have to win with no training camp or a short one.”

Self said he will check with general managers on the status of his players.

“The big thing is to have an open line of communication with them and their families,” Self said of the NBA hopefuls. “Selfishly, we all want everyone to always come back, but kids have to do what’s best for them and their families. If the time is right, they need to go. If the time is not right, they need to stay.”

He added: “In my opinion, if you don’t go in the first round, then you’ve wasted an opportunity. There are 60 people that should be guaranteed to be first-round picks, and there are only 30 picks, so somebody’s going to get left out.”

Of the Morris twins, Self said: “To me, this is the best front line in the country, and they can get better. I think those kids can play at the next level. I don’t know if the timing is quite right for them. A lot of people out there think a lot of them, and they should because they are both really good.”

Of freshman Josh Selby, whose stock reportedly has dropped significantly since his senior year in high school, Self said: “Talk about the number of games he missed (to NCAA suspension, injury), breaking his hand in the summer, missing 30 practices (while in NCAA limbo), he hasn’t had a chance to develop into what they (Final Four guards Kemba Walker, Shelvin Mack, Joey Rodriguez) have because he hasn’t gotten the reps. He’s going to be fine. He needs lots of reps.”

Of sophomore Thomas Robinson, who some draft sites say is a first rounder because of his body and rebounding ability: “He’s terrific. He can be very inconsistent. He needs to take a step like Markieff took this year. It’s amazing to me the type of year he had considering all of the stuff he went through (death of mom, grandmother, grandfather). Hopefully he can play with a free mind and be able to just play as opposed to think and have so many different things going on in his head.”

Asked if Robinson’s family situation would make it easy to understand his possibly turning pro, Self said: “If it was best for his family, then I would say that. I don’t know if that is the case now. It could be. I just don’t know. He has a good motor, great body. He has room for improvement.”

Self on the disappointment of losing to VCU in the Elite Eight: “Regardless of seeds, regardless of whatever, we were the better team (compared to VCU) in my opinion,” he said. “We weren’t that day, but we were the better team, and that’s tough to stomach. That’s what life’s all about. When an opportunity presents itself, you have to pounce on it. I won’t get over it for a long time, nor should I. But it doesn’t take away from the fact that you really look and analyze who we lost, what we had coming back, different roles the players had, suspensions, deaths, injuries. All the things added up where there’s no way this team can be 35-3.”

Self says the future is bright: “These guys will rally around and our program, will be back in that same game again real soon. There will be a different result. It’s just tough to swallow because it was set up so good for us. I really thought we’d play for a national championship this year.”

Self has to attend NABC meetings in Houston later this week: “It’s tough going there whenever you feel you should still be playing,” he said of the Final Four.

USC game in Wichita: KU’s road basketball game against the University of Southern California next season will likely be played in Wichita’s Intrust Bank Arena, KU officials indicated Tuesday.

“This is the second game of a home-and-home series. We played the first game here last season,” KU associate athletic director Jim Marchiony said. “USC approached us about playing their home game in Wichita, rather than Los Angeles.”

The game will be played sometime in December. No ticket information is available since the deal has not been finalized. USC would keep all the gate receipts since it would be its home game.

Intrust Bank Arena seats 15,000. USC’s Galen Center seats 10,250. KU last played a game in Wichita in the 1991-92 season, versus Wichita State.


KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

Good luck hitting that recruiting home run after the way Selby was handled this year. Does anyone wonder why phenoms wanna play for Calipari now?

Matt Kenton 8 years, 8 months ago

Yes, freshman Enes Kanter sat the entire season. And how should Selby have been handled, given all the time he needed to find his way while we rack up losses mid to late season with Elijah sitting on the bench?

100 8 years, 8 months ago

What's up KULA?

Well interesting you bring this up today. Calipari news is spreading like a wildfire today....

There is suddenly a realistic chance the NCAA could vacate at least part of Calipari's season, likely all games past January 2011. Several of his players were quoted yesterday regarding that illegal pro from Turkey.

Apparently after he was ruled ineligible by the NCAA for the 2nd time, this meant he not only couldn't play in games, he also couldn't practice.

Calipari tried to get around this rule by hiring Kanter as a student assistant. But this meant the pro from Turkey, due to being a pro & not a student basketball player at Kentucky, could not practice with the team, but he could shout instructions in Turkish.

Well apparently Calipari forgot to tell his players to shut up & not mention what Kanter did during the season! Several of his players yesterday gushed about Kanter, telling Goliath stories of his Zeus presence in practice all season, especially Harrelson who said, "if I could beat Kanter in practice, I knew I could beat anyone in college basketball."

Talk about an unfair advantage. Does UT have Kevin Durant at practice everyday? I wondered how throughout this tournament how this nobody (Harrelson) suddenly was unstoppable at times.

Now we know.

I'm not sure there's any way Cal can wiggle out of this one.

Although, at least he can have another "biggest day in Kentucky basketball history" (NbA draft day). Kanter could easily go #1. Heck Harrelson suddenly looks like a top 10 pick. Thanks to "Coach Kanter"!

minipman 8 years, 8 months ago

hmm.. not sure whether to take this as a joke or not since i have not read this anywhere.. . but either way.. i doubt dont this... calipari has always been a cheater and always will.. thats why people refer to him as the used car salesman.. all the seasons he's made it to the final four have been stripped.. so my guess is that this one will be too.. kick calipari out of college basketball!!

100 8 years, 8 months ago


Kanter can be hired as a student coach. Therein lies Calipari's problem. From what I'm reading the problem is he played in practice as a student athlete the entire year. Normally this might be overlooked by the NCAA. In Kanter's case, I'm not sure it will be since he was twice told by the NCAA he was not eligible to be a student athlete.

If he just stood there on the sidelines & coached, showed a few drills, then you're right. But after reading that story & hearing the talk radio this morning, that's certainly not what his teammates are saying he did.

I mean really, UK barely beat Princeton. Should the NCAA care that Harrelson (who apparently benefitted the most from Kanter playing as a student athlete in practice) was the key player for UK throughout this magical run they had?

KU_alum_2001 8 years, 8 months ago

What is this... a blog? First, I'd hardly call it a credible website. And second, "No word yet if the NCAA is looking into this."

Lonnie Edgecomb 8 years, 8 months ago

you had 610 SPORTS on the other day didn't you?

KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

No, I don't listen to sports radio. And that station's not available in my market anyway. Why do you ask? Did they say the same thing? Interesting.

LJ Gee 8 years, 8 months ago

Dude the people on this forum are ridiculous. I love KU as much as anyone and that includes coach Self, but c'mon people, he's not perfect. Its a TOTALLY valid point. Coach Cal has had three #1 overall picks and the freshman that play for him are the heart of his teams and get way more run than any freshman has ever had for KU including Xavier. Selby was supposed to be a one and done and he was barely a factor on this team. Whether you think he was mishandled or not, it is definitely something the top recruits are going to look at. Xavier was totally overshadowed by John Wall and Selby was a non-factor. Those are the two highest rated recruits Self has ever landed. I promise you this is something other coaches will be telling recruits and its something recruits will be thinking about. Im not so sure this is a bad thing though. How many one and done players have led their teams to national championships? Melo is the only one I can think of. Id rather have three and four year players, but thats just me. Either way, its okay to be a logical fan, people.

SaulGood 8 years, 8 months ago

I don't disagree with your point if freshman are looking to springboard directly to the pros. Keep in mind, 713, that for someone like me who has been watching KU for the last almost 30 years, that we are just recently, beginning with Self's tenure, adjusting to being a program school that launches people direct-to-NBA. Even Paul Pierce played here three years. You know, you're not wrong, and your speech here does have logic that supports your viewpoint, but a lot of others would rather see a program that has a higher ratio of NBA players who graduated in four years out of KU. Unfortunately these days, that means that some recruits are not going to see the same daylight, like Selby, unless they're willing to pay dues. Someone like Calipari keeps the middle of his lineup open so that there's always a zinger coming through going straight to pro. We try to build a lineup that allows us to play as a team, and some of us prefer the logic in that. No doubt - that's the way it was for over a decade with Roy. All I'm saying is that there's nothing inherently ridiculous about it, so I don't see any reason for you to label us all that way.

KU_alum_2001 8 years, 8 months ago

Saul, just one quick point. You said that "we are just recently, beginning with Self's tenure, adjusting to being a program school that launches people direct-to-NBA." That's basically the case for every program. 5 years ago, guys could go straight to the NBA out of high school. Only since then has the idea of a one-and-done existed to some degree. Yes, there were a few Carmelo Anthony's prior to that but the idea of "one-and-done" wasn't what it is now. So "if" you're suggesting that we are adjusting to the idea now while other programs are used to it, well that's just not really very accurate.

I think the point has been made by many that other coaches will use Selby as an example of why they can't count on playing time at KU due to our team approach. I'm not saying it's necessarily a bad thing (and it's not if we don't want one-and-done) but it could very likely affect our recruiting efforts going forward.

SaulGood 8 years, 8 months ago

Well I do appreciate you putting your time in to the comment. I just don't personally put much stock in the one-and-dones, while I don't personally judge them either. I think your point about people viewing cases like Selby defines why I take more of a ho-hum attitude and don't really concern myself with who is going and staying from a OAD standpoint. I appreciate your insights though...tomorrow when I'm more awake I'll look at it again :)

Gregor Southard 8 years, 8 months ago

careful there 713, honesty will get you called names on this site!

addlime 8 years, 8 months ago

The bottom line is Selby wasn't as ready as Barnes or Knight, which is why Selby didn't play as well as those guys. Remember, those guys were ahead of Selby on Bill Self's list also. In a one year situation, its not the coach, its the player. Now if Selby stays 2-4 years, his development will depend a lot on the coach, and I think that bodes well for him over working with coach Cal. Roy Williams has always been great at developing players as well, IMHO.

tydon27 8 years, 8 months ago

With all due respect I disagre that barnes or knight was more ready than josh. First look at the beginning of the season when barnes was struggling to find his game and everyone was calling him overrated and wondering why he was a preseason all-american. Roy let him play through all that and getbused to to college game and he became the player everyone thought he would at the start of the year.

Second look at some of the things that josh went through. He missed the first 9 games because of suspension (also I think they said he missed quite a few team practices because the ncaa hadn't cleared him yet). When he did start playing self did give him quite a few minutes and he was a bit inconsistent but look at the 3 or 4 games before he hurt his foot. He was just starting to get some consistent play.

After he came back from the foot injury self decided to scrafice joshs developement to win the big XII regular season title and had him on a short leash and playing guys who he knew would give him consistent minutes. This isn't a bad thing because I love the wins and titles but it did scrafice this teams overall potential (not saying we still shouldn't have beat vcu).

This is where calapari differs from self in that he let's his freshmen play through things and learn from them. With the self system he doesn't have to because he always has at least 2 experienced guards that he knows well. This isn't a bad thing but for this team it didn't maximize the potential.

Selby was anything but a "flop" this year because of the the suspensions, injury, and then inconsistent minutes. Think about how many games he played in and the minutes he got. Its probably half as many games as barnes and knight and less than half as many minutes. A young player can't adjust to big time college basketball no matter how talented he is.

I hope selby decides to come back for at least 1 more year and shows us all that this year was a fluke and displays all that talent he has. I commend him for being the ultimate team player this year by excepting the role self gave to him and always doing everything he could when he was in the game.

lee3022 8 years, 8 months ago

The point you raise misses the point of the support for Coach Self as I see it. John Calipari runs a different program with different methods and different aims than Coach Self. Even though Calipari has had two different teams he has coached with two different schools vacate Final Four teams with forfeitures, there are still those who applaud any methods for the end of winning.

Many of us here believe Coach Self does not agree with this. The notion of student athlete is still alive in KU with the award of Academic All-American being a higher achievement than AP All-American. The men's basketball team's graduation rate exceeds the student body rate by a significant margin. While Calipari wants to keep his players only one year, Self wants them to continue until they are complete players and citizens. He not only prepares them for basketball but works to prepare them for life.

I watched Calipari curse out Terrance Jones in front of an Alabama arena crowd and a National TV audience this year and knew I would not want my son playing for him. Calipari believes he should humiliate a player for making a mistake. Night and day different than Self who can raise his voice but does not berate and belittle. Sometimes the end result is no longer valuable because of the methods. This is a major difference.

hayjawk 8 years, 8 months ago

There is always a naysayer who knows how to type. Given Coach Self's recruiting record and his win percentage, I think we'll be just fine. The future looks bright and the glass is not half empty.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 8 months ago

I do. As a player, it would be a shame to win a bunch of games (and possibly a National Championship) and have to vacate it because of violations. Think if Memphis would have beaten KU in ' National Champion. I'd rather be on a team like KU where you know there's no possibility of having to vacate your season.

Also, Selby was handled 100% correctly this year. After his suspension ended he was playing a lot. Then, when it was apparent that he was in a slump (and after he got injured), his minutes declined in favor of guys who were producing in games (and practice). If he stays at KU, he will get plenty of opportunities next year, and he will deserve the minutes he gets.

100 8 years, 8 months ago

@Slayer.... More specifically this is a copy of a post from the local UK paper so you can see why the UK fanbase is nervous right now regarding the UK " coaching job" Enus Kanter had past January 7th:

Begin Post:

"Here's the official NCAA ruling from January:

It states:

"As a result of the ruling, Kanter will not be allowed to compete, practice or travel with the team as a player, but is able to receive financial aid to continue his education at Kentucky. The university has indicated it plans to designate Kanter as an undergraduate student-assistant coach. In this capacity, Kanter could perform limited coaching duties with the team."

ginal 8 years, 8 months ago

selby was handled???? get a grip, the kid showed he wasn't ready YET for a big time conference and a big time team (no matter what his momma thought), other than his first game not alot was demonstrated to justify a high ranking from He found out it isnt high school ball anymore. Don't anybody blame it on how "HE WAS HANDLED" that is just rediculous

David Howell 8 years, 8 months ago

+1 Ginal .........

For a multitude of reasons, Selby proved he didn't deserve much court time this year when we had as good or better options on the bench. His lack of ball-handling skills were quite apparent in the game with Nebraska at home. In short, Selby never really improved much during his freshman year. The only thing he ever really excelled in was operating in the open court on the fast break. However, I feel with a lot (LOTS) of off-season work and dedication, he will get a lot better and deserve the playing time next year.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

Hmm, he was held out by the NCAA and then was injured. So how would you handle that genius. You would have started him right out of the gate when he wasn't ready? He was given opportunities for minutes but was very inconsistent and you would have kept giving him more minutes while we lost and perhaps his confidence was dashed even more? Care to elaborated what you would have done different or do you just want to keep criticizing without giving us an opportunity to comment on your brilliant alternative? Man up.

mojayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

It's only a matter of time before Coach Cal falls again. Is Worldwide Wes involved In this as well? Something always seems fishy with his elevated recruiting classes. Now, Kanter. Give me Coach Self any day. IOE. Integrity Over Everything.

Martin Rosenblum 8 years, 8 months ago

Cal's mottos:

COE (Cheat Over Everything) SOE (Sleaze Over Everything). MOE (Me Over Everything) VES (Vacated Every School) TAK (Take Advantage of Kids) SOB (use your imagination)

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

this looks fun...

CTW (Cheat to Win) LWA (Leave While Ahead) DGC (Don't get caught) PID (Play it Dumb) DOE (Dollars Over Everything)

100 8 years, 8 months ago

Another UK infraction from this season I had forgotten about. Their star center (Harrelson) was at the center of this one too. Somehow I get the feeling Cal is purposefully trying to get a final four vacated so he can be part of a really really elite list.... "the only coach to have 3 final fours vacated at three different schools!"....

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

Self is resilient.

Self is fired up.

Self is recruiting.

Self is swinging for the fences.

Self is not going to forget the VCU loss.

Self is going to learn from it.

Self is going to get better.

Self and KU are going to be very good next season.

HawksWin 8 years, 8 months ago

+1. That is Self's DNA. He'll figure it out & fix it.

John Boyle 8 years, 8 months ago

First, thank you for being such a positive person. I'm sure if you were coach you could really get the guys fired up for a tough game Second, those were all first or second round losses. The elite eight teams have weathered the storm from earlier tough games and are much better opponents. VCU shot threes much better than they did all year. They were hot. They will live and die by the three. They don't fall that easily all the time and when they don't, VCU will lose badly. By the way looking at your final four bracket, you obviously know more than anyone else. How many teams in your final four are still in the tournament?

KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm not sure Bill won't forget the VCU loss, or learn anything from it, unless he watches the tape, which he says he won't do. He couldn't even say "VCU" in either of these articles, deflecting it to "an Elite Eight game" problem. Was it a sweet sixteen problem last year? Was it a first round problem in 05 & 06? He refused to watch the UNI tape last year. How'd that work out for him? About the same. Learn from history or repeat it.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

Still waiting for you to give us your way of "handling" Selby. In the words of my Grandpa (RIP) If you can't do better than STFU. Actually she never said the STFU part, she said keep quiet but something tells me she wanted to.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

Actually I think both my Grandpa and Grandma said it but Grandpa would have said STFU.

cobweb 8 years, 8 months ago

KULA has a brilliant hindsight analysis for us. Kentucky almost got eliminated, too. What about the other 1 and 2 seeds? Do their coaches suck, too? Calipari instead of Self? Really? Give us a break.

100 8 years, 8 months ago

@Cobweb.... Here's the bigger question in my mind since the media is going nuts with Calipari....

Would Calipari's team have beaten Princeton without Enus Kanter participating in practice all season?

It was a tie game. Was Harrelson "that" good this year because Kanter was practicing against Harrelson when he was supposed to be "coaching"?

Without Kanter practicing as a student athlete all year for UK, would they have even made the NCAA tournament?

KansasComet 8 years, 8 months ago

All the talent in the world does not do us any good sitting and marinating on the bench. If we want these "Homerun" players so bad, how about letting them play max minutes in the exhibition games? At least give them a chance to show what they can bring to the table.

I believe you only give an opponent your best shot, when you play your best players!

Andy Tweedy 8 years, 8 months ago

If the players deserve to play, they will. Xavier Henry didn't have any trouble finding time on the court. Neither did Mario Chalmers. Bill Self didn't keep Josh Selby from starring, injuries and suspension did.

Theutus 8 years, 8 months ago

Xavier Henry got playing time because it was guaranteed.... Honestly, I see no other explanation.

I don't have anything against the kid, but he did NOT earn his playing time. Standing around on a wing and never attacking the basket... If anything, that result (virtually nothing) is why Self went the opposite direction with Selby. Because he put all the faith in the world in a one and done (Henry) and got virtually nothing in return.

KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

I agree. I have a sneaking suspicion of an "agreement" between Bill and Carl.

KansasComet 8 years, 8 months ago

The point I am making is let the young players Play max minutes in exhibition games, they don't effect the record and it can be a valuable experience that may help further evaluate these players. Some players play much better in real games than they do in practice.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

I have read your comments KansasComet (Does Gayle Sayers know you ripped of his nickname?), KULA and Thetus and after giving them careful thought I have come to the conclusion that Bill Self is a much better coach than any of you.

John Boyle 8 years, 8 months ago

The best players played. End of story.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

I thought that was "In God we trust?" Don't go overboard there.

JJHAWK 8 years, 8 months ago

Perhaps Phi4 has the ability to trust in others.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

No, you're right .. it was just the Self = God thing some profess a bit (meaning he knows so much more than everyone else that he is beyond criticism) I was referring to.

yates33333 8 years, 8 months ago

Selby didn't play good enough to justify more minutes or many more minutes than he got after the first three games. He probably played too many. Releford would undoubtedly have done better with more time on the floor. Johnson might also have improved. I think any criticism of Bill Self is nonsense. He did an excellent job this year with the talent he had. Making the Elite 8 isn't chopped liver no matter what the draw. Nor was winning the Big 12 regular season and tournament. How many teams were 35 and 3 this year? KU was a good team that we all hoped would win the NCAA tourney. It just didn't.

I think Martin and Barnes had as many talented players as Self, and they didn't do as good a job. They, too, are great coaches.

KSseahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

I would have rather seen Releford on the floor than Selby. At least with Releford, you knew he would play some D...then you could hide him on O b/c of the twins and hope one of the guards was shooting well. Selby doesn't D up and he made WAY too many silly plays and took bad shots early in possessions. He's not ready for the league and should come back. I like the kid way better than the x factor...Selby seems to want to improve and is a team player and shows emotion.

As much as TT drives me crazy at times, he was the best player on the team for the VCU loss and we are a better team with him on the court, cause he just gets it...sometimes...sorta like Collins.

I'm an EJ convert...loved him last year...not so much early this season, then came on strong late...which was aided by the TT suspension.

Twins, TRob, TT, Jayla...Jayhawk nation needs you back to finish what you started. Regardless of what happens...we'll be behind you.


Robert Rauktis 8 years, 8 months ago

"He will announce for KU or Missouri at Sunday’s NeXt All-America game in suburban Chicago."

Do any of these phenoms come without the "second coming" bequeath?

"Potential means they haven't done it yet." -Bear Bryant

ny05ks08 8 years, 8 months ago

HCBS thought so far away before the VCU game, no wonder the article on LJW. A lesson for sure, I think.

kkoenig 8 years, 8 months ago

sounds to me like Self knows a couple of the prospects are going to commit. He made a similar analogy before Selby committed last year.

Andy Tweedy 8 years, 8 months ago

He always pulls a rabbit out of his hat about now. Xavier Henry, Darell Arthur, Josh Selby. Wasn't Brandon Rush a late period signee as well? Maybe Daniels will have some crazy dream that will end him up at Kansas, ala Arthur!

Steve Gantz 8 years, 8 months ago

Shows you how tough it is to run a hoops program at USC if they're willing to move their "home" game to Wichita. That'll be the worst home court advantage in history I suppose.

Should the twins declare this team will take a significant drop, although not fatal. If TRob also declares, well, the NCAA streak will still live, but we won't be any higher than a 5 or 6 seed. Of course Selby is a wild card in this whole scenario. Should he stick around and have a chance to develop, this team could be very good again next season.

The real reason to success may be trying to avoid playing mid majors in the tourney!

Stan Unruh 8 years, 8 months ago

How many dates have been reported that Ben McLemore was going to make a decision? Didn't this start last Thanksgiving? Hope this weekend he finally gives the word on playing for the Jayhawks. Come on down Ben....

REHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

If everybody returns, and if Bill Self does hit a home run with recruiting, esp. bringing in Ben Mc and some bigs, I could see Releford and/or Withey galloping off into the sunset, even tho they each have already sat out a year. (That is, if NCAA rules allow sitting out a second year.) Travis obviously loves the Jayhawk program; but this tournament offered bigtime writing on the wall regarding his playing future if the lineup is stacked. Maybe his recovery from the injury was not yet 90%+; and once he gets back to full motion, he will win major playing minutes. I see lots of ifs and a maybe in my post. It has to eat away at Travis that in his third season he sits on a bench for an Elite 8 squad while his freshman brother starts and shines for Alabama, even tho that team is an NIT finalist.

Ed Brown 8 years, 8 months ago

Releford will never be explosive like he was and his leaping is going to be somewhat compromised because of his injury. It's sad because he was just at the point of major contribution, imho.

SaulGood 8 years, 8 months ago

I disagree. A high-ankle sprain will recover completely over the offseason. No doubt it was a bad one, but I'm personally confident Releford's got many more surprises for us next season.

KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

Good post REHawk, I agree. I actually hope we don't get Ben cuz I'd rather see a 4th year Travis finally get to play 25-30 minutes at the 3 than any freshman one and done, no matter how good. If Ben comes here, Bill probably plays Travis at the 4, if at all. And Withey languishes on the bench another year (for whatever reason). I wouldn't be surprised to see Jeff test the draft waters.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

Withey test the draft waters? Really? Wow.

I like Withey and believe he can develop into more of a force, but that would be such a short "test" you would have to call it a pop quiz. I would wish him the best, but if he declares, I don't see good things coming for him. Hope I'm wrong for his sake.

KULA 8 years, 8 months ago

I was just commenting that it wouldn't surprise me. I see a lot of upside in him and I think the NBA will too, whenever he goes, 2011, 12 or 13

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

I too see the upside, but I also saw a player that frequently stood around and/or looked somewhat lost. He needs game experience, additional coaching and some serious tonnage added to that frame, IMHO.

If he goes I'd have to believe it's later rather than sooner. Nevertheless, I'd wish him well at any point. It's gotta be tough practicing hard and riding the bench.

Ron Prichard 8 years, 8 months ago

You guys can't be serious about Withey? In his wildest dreams he isn't ready for the NBA. He's not even ready to compete in the Big XII right now.

"It's gotta be tough practicing hard and riding the bench." baddog, I can't tell if there is some underlying jab directed at Coach Self in this comment or not. However, this is the same coaching staff (Self included) that is consistently praised for developing big men year after year. If Withey isn't playing right now, it's because he is not ready. Not because he isn't getting good coaching.

Withey and Releford are not going anywhere. Releford will see significant minutes next year regardless of who we sign. Withey may, but he needs some serious bulk to keep from getting pushed around.

McLemore would be a great addition to this team, and I seriously hope he commits to us on Sunday and ends the speculation.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

No jab intended at Coach Self, whatsoever. If I have a criticism, I'll come right out and state it. Just ask the late, not so great KSA 21-3503 where I stand.

You also seem to misinterpret my position on Withey. I can't make my position any clearer than my comments above: "Withey test the draft waters? Really? Wow". I was just trying to express my disagreement/disbelief without being rude to KULA. Likewise, I was empathizing with a player that transferred and sat out a year, has gone through boot camp, etc and hasn't seen much playing time. That is all. Again, I call it as I see it. I may not be correct, but you'll sure know where I stand.


Jeremy LeMaster 8 years, 8 months ago

I do not see Ben as a one-and-done type of player.

jhawktop 8 years, 8 months ago

Not trying to take anything away from the season, 35-3 and an Elite 8 is remarkable. But at some point being champion of the regular season needs to translate into post-season success (and by that I mean stop stumbling over lesser opponents). Maybe Travis and/or Elijah and/or Jeff need to get into a mid-season game where the lead or deficit is only 2 points with 2 minutes remaining. Mabye we lose that game. But it also makes those guys better down the line, so we don't have to watch our only proven guards miss 3 after 3 when it counts. I'm a huge Self fan, and have faith that he'll figure it out, whatever it is.

Kirk 8 years, 8 months ago

This topic is, in a nutshell, what I dislike about college b-ball today.

Joe Joseph 8 years, 8 months ago

All this talk of Robinson leaving makes me nervous. I had braced myself throughout the season for dos Morris leaving, but I remained under the assumption that Robinson would be returning. How brutal would that be...

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

Most of you know I follow recruiting pretty hard and stay up on it. I have no "Inside" contacts or anything like that, but I do enjoy reading about it and keeping up on it.

Not once have I been worried about recruiting this year or in the past, but there is a small part of me that just doesn't feel right. Even though KU has had all this success the last two years with regular season wins, I feel like KU is in a very delicate position right now.

With this article and some of the quotes I'm reading from Self, I feel this sense of "uneasiness" in Self's voice. I know we just lost and all and it's disappointing, but something doesn't feel right.

As the article states, hitting the homerun would be for everybody to return, but it's not looking that will happen. I sure hope it does. I don't know, maybe the best thing to happen to KU this post-season is the fact that Mike Anderson left Mizzou for Arkansas. Freeing up McClemore and possibly Otto Porter would definitely be huge. Porter is underrated and hasn't been in the National Spotlight much, but he is a beast that has a ton of potential.

This next month or so is going to be quite stressful IMO. KU had a great season, but they finished short of their mark and you never know how NBA GM's view that sort of stuff especially with the Twins. We'll see, I thought I had it figured it out, but I am more confused than ever on what will happen and because of all the "Unknowns" it's really really really hard to predict anything. Let's all hope that everybody comes back, KU signs McClemore and Porter and KU makes a run next year. With the way this season ended, that would be about the only thing that could perk me up 100 percent at the moment.

KSseahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Speaking of silly does MU look about now???

  • getting played by TWO head coaches in two weeks
  • flirting with the Big 10, (arguably) causing the breakup of the Big 12, then getting left at the alter
  • alienating Sundvold in the midst of a coaching search
  • passing on Self for Snyder
  • 1-15 against KU in last 16 opportunities
  • colors are black and gold
  • can't pronounce the name of the state correctly
  • can't spell the name of the SCHOOL correctly
  • etc, etc...

Freaking amateurs, dude.

I thank all that is good I was born a Jayhawk.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

"maybe the best thing to happen to KU this post-season is the fact that Mike Anderson left Mizzou for Arkansas."

Not if Matt Painter leaves Purdue and comes to MIZ-EWW. He could very well cause McLemore to reconsider (assuming he'd actually decided on KU prior to Anderson's departure) as well as Porter, if they compliment his style. Given Painter's proven success-both in terms of his record and recruiting, KU could very well rue the day Andrson left for Arkansas.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

Not IMO, the day that Mizzou starts competing consistenly and mostly on the same level as KU will be the moment in time this conference and KU take a step forward into improving.

As much as I hate Mizzou and despise everything that Mizzou has to offer as an institution, Mizzou and K-State challenging KU along the I-70 highway is crucial to the success of this conference. If that means hiring Matt Painter than so be it. Duke and Carolina aren't bigger than college basketball on their own two feet, but together no matter how much they hate each other.......... they have separated themselves from everybody else at the moment.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

Well shaw, I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree, then. No big deal to me.

As far as I'm concerned there are 7 other schools in the Big 12-2 that are just as responsible for stepping it up to KU's level as KSU & miz-eww. Texas has been a good challenger of late, why can't the rest? Perhaps they emphasize football too much at those schools? Given we will play all of them twice beginning next season, I could care less where the school is located.

I'll be damned if I ever want to rely on Columbia for competition. I don't ever want miz-eww to be successful in anything aside from...well I just can't think of anything.

Have a good day.

Hank Cross 8 years, 8 months ago

KU absolutely needs MU and/or KSU to step-up and be a serious rival. More dogfights where the outcome is not pre-ordained will only help with toughness at tourney time. A better league leading to a higher would also strengthen recruiting efforts.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

Again-there are 8 other schools besides MU that can step it up. We don't "need" MU to do jack squat.

kkoenig 8 years, 8 months ago

why would McLemore go to MU with Anderson gone? Anderson was the reason part of Mc's family wanted him in Columbia.

bad_dog 8 years, 8 months ago

Part of the reasons I've heard expressed relates to proximity-it would be easier for his family to attend games coming from St. Louis and they are MU supporters. Neither of those reasons change because Anderson left. In addition, I believe Painter would be more successful than Anderson was at MU. More success = greater exposure potential for the player and the program. Perennially finishing in the middle of the conference like Anderson did? Not nearly as much exposure or prestige, although a great player will always find a way to the league.

BabyJay2009 8 years, 8 months ago

Fear not my brodas! If recruiting is the game, Self is the man! 'Nuff said. and enjoy!

Ethan Berger 8 years, 8 months ago

Can I get your take on daniels. Ive been doing some research on him and he seems like a Brandon Rush type player but with more height. But everyone keeps saying he will play the 4 in college. Is he more of a small foward or a power?

David Howell 8 years, 8 months ago

KUShaw, you say "Not once was I worried, but then again something doesn't feel right" ......... Covering your bases on that I guess.

To me what isn't right is (A) we keep losing to mid majors or worse, and (B) we don't seem to learn from our mistakes and get better as the season rolls on. Our FT shooting never really improved much (ala bandaid only) and our ability to surrender wide open 3 point shots has been a recurring theme during Bill's tenure.

What you should have said was "If the Morris Twins leave we will feel the effects, but if TRob also leaves we are screwed." Someone name one quality BIG we have a chance at right now ! To me Daniels is a wanna be "3" very small "4".

Maurice E. King III 8 years, 8 months ago

Is USC wanting to play in Wichita because they are recruiting Perry Ellis also?

Ron Prichard 8 years, 8 months ago

I have a feeling it has more to do with the size of the arena and the fact that they know they will sell it out in Wichita, even if it becomes a "home" crowd for Kansas. I'm guessing (I have no actual knowledge of USC's attendance figures) that they are not anticipating great attendance next year and could make a significant amount more by moving the game. Just my opinion, and definitely up for discussion.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

If that is the case then why not move it to the Sprint Center? Same home crowd for Kansas but I gotta believe more people and more $ in KC.

justinryman 8 years, 8 months ago

"If you are a genius and unsuccessful, everybody treats you as if you were a genius, but when you come to be successful, when you commence to earn money, when you are really successful, then your family and everybody no longer treats you like a genius, they treat you like a man who has become successful."

Pablo Picasso

Funhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

"All the things added up where there’s no way this team can be 35-3.” Putting this record into perspective --

If there are 38 possible points in a test, and you scored 35, you get an A.

If you are a kid looking for a date, and you ask 38 out....35 say "yes" to your offer, that's pretty amazing.

If you are a salesman and your boss gives you 38 leads, 38 prospects...and you made 35 sales to those 38 prospects, you are an incredible salesperson.

And if you did not make the last sale, you probably won't get fired, nor accused to being a failure.

Hank Cross 8 years, 8 months ago

That assumes that all 35 games are equal. They're not.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

Right, completely irrelevant comparison by Funhawk.

To further his analogy, you make sales to 35 of the 38, but 30 of them are for $1000, 3 are for $20,000, and 2 are for $40,000; but one that got away was for $500,000. Success? Or not? Depends on your definition and goals.

Perspectives on what is success are different.

Just as Missouri's perspective is different, and UMKC's.

Elite programs should set the bar differently than, well, the MU's of the world.

hawksfan08 8 years, 8 months ago

Interesting quote from Self about the lock out preventing players from developing if they go to the NBA when he refuses to allow the same thing to happen with his teams.

We were too reliant on 3 pt shooting this year.Think back to 08. Yes we could shoot threes but we didn't have to. We scored 100 pts v. Baylor without making a single 3 because we didn't have one dimensional guards.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

I replied above before I saw your less sensitive, but perhaps more effective, reply ... +1

utahjayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

He needs to develop a pull up and a floater - he really could only shoot the 3.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

Hawksfan: I also found that quote very interesting about the lockout and the players not technically being able to develop until february. It's very interesting indeed. I don't know if it's Self trying to cover his own basis or what, but it does seem a little odd.

All I know is that in the 1998 draft, Michael Olawankandi (SP?), Mike Bibby, Vince Carter, Robert Traylor, Jason Williams, Larry Huges, Dirk Nowitzki, and Paul Pierce were all underclassmen that were Top 10 Picks and none of them played until Feb 9th of the 1999 NBA shortened season.

I actually told Jesse Newell that he should do a story about this and see if he could get some interviews from Paul Pierce, Raef LaFrentz (Even though he was a senior and a #3 pick) and somebody else from this list to see what they thought about the upcoming potential lockout for the 2011-2012 NBA season.

I mean, and I have no idea, how much did that 1999 lockout really weigh on Paul Pierce's decision to leave and looking back would he have made the same decision even though he did start 42 of the 44 games he played in his rookie season. I'm also curious at what point during the season those rookies finally got paid? Was it the first game? Was it when the lockout officially ended? I don't know, but it all seems like a very logical process I would take if I was somebody like the Twins.

It's an interesting topic and I'm not really sure which way I lean because I don't know about the contracts, how they are set up, or how the behind the scenes stuff works with these rookies. What I do know is that I would love to hear Paul Pierce's take on the situation and understand the impact that it truly would have on the rookies that are underclassmen.

lee3022 8 years, 8 months ago

The league rules do not allow any contact including any pay between the teams and players including the rookies. That means no playbook to study or any physical training or support.

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Three days removed from "The Debacle" I am starting to calm down. Good thing, I have been very unpleasant to be around, ask my wife.

Which brings me around to these criticisms of Self, the program, the whole 9 yards. Some of you have probably been like me, just lashing out. We all do this when things don't go right. And in the path of this anger are family, freinds, etc. Of this I am guilty. On this blog I have "lashed out". In that wake have been what I would hope are my KUSPORTS.COM freinds. Sunday's events clouded my thinking and perhaps has others as well. I hope I am turning the corner. I have posted things in response to some that were frought with emotion. That is not fair. I was not fair to fellow bloggers such as: kemithstl1 AsadZ lishku Chicago_JHawk Cjhawker958 plasticJHawk Hawk90 jaybate Ralster kushaw kuwells HighEliteMajor And probably others.

For me, these responses are an attempt to change the outcome, or change the things that could possibly change future outcomes. But that can't happen.

I went so far as to take an inventory of all my KU memorabilia. Things like the mugs, cups, hats, shirts, posters, photos, the golf shoes with the little Jayhawk on them; even my prized book of Bill himself "At Home in the Phog". I did this with the intention of throwing every piece of it in the trash! That's right, the trash. I was not even going to give myself the pleasure of making one shinny dime off of it.

I am glad I am coming out of this funk, although there is still a ways to go. I hope others can reconcile the events and come out the other end as well. It's still good to be a Jayhawk fan.

Rock Chalk!

justinryman 8 years, 8 months ago

Just remember you are a Jayhawk For Life (J.F.L) and that's what the majority of us are here, you said it best with you last sentence.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

BC Raven: I'm not sure what to think of your post, but it did make me chuckle. I'm glad you've come out of your depressed state so to speak. Believe me, I've been irritable as well, but I've come to come grips with the loss. I don't like it, want something to change for future seasons, but I accept it. I can't even recall when you weren't "Fair" to me since Sunday so no big deal.

BC, I think of it like this and I truly believe this. KU is so freakin close to knocking the doors off of college basketball. I mean, KU and Self has the opportunity to do something that even Coach K hasn't done, but it's hard to accomplish that when you keep having early exits from the tourney.

I mean, does anybody remember the anger Boston Red Sox fans had for over a century? Then what happened? The Boston Red Sox won not 1 but 2 World Series (04 and 07) in the span of 4 years and nobody really remembers that 100 years of failures except Red Sox Fans.

I just feel that KU had a great opportunity to erase those opinions outside of Jayhawkland (UNI, Bucknell, and Bradley) by winning a Championship this year. Sure, it would have been awesome to have said that KU has won 2 Championships in 4 years, but we have to live with the fact that KU can add VCU to the list of disappointing losses. Is there anything wrong with that? In the grand scheme of things, no, but it does give ammunition to opposing teams.

With all of this said and despite this VCU loss, I still firmly believe that KU is on the verge of doing something very special in college basketball. All it takes is a "Championship" for the doubters to be quieted, but I hope Self and his staff can keep looking for ways to improve from these disappointing losses. That's all I ask for and I think Self is taking the right steps to go in that direction so soon after this loss.

As fans, we're all protective of what we hold true for our passions and there is nothing wrong with that. Most of us can taste that feeling and just want KU and Self to take that next step because it's right there. If Self and KU can get over this obstacle and get to that next level, which is what we all want, we will be the most obnoxious fan base out there and to be honest...................I want that title. LOL! Don't sweat it BCraven! You're good in my book.

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

I guess we live too much in the "I Want it Now" world.

kushaw you make it clear I am in good company. And I would add one thing about this VCU loss that I kind of wish Self would have stated. To indicate KU simply "choked" really demeans VCU. And to think that Butler would have been any kind of cakewalk is foolish as well.

FLJHK 8 years, 8 months ago

KUShaw: Great post and great analogy with the Red Sox. I too believe KU is on the verge of something truly special, and that Coach Self is going to figure out the path to do so.

Actually, contemporary Red Sox fans annoy the heck out of me. Here's to hoping we can be similarly obnoxious in years to come.

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Hey, I must be a Bill Self Homer as well since I've got his book as mentioned and have plans to see about getting it signed. And hopefully pass on to my nephew some day.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

You are all about passion and emotional investment .. the mark of a true fan. Your reaction on thinking about trashing your KU stuff just shows the depth of your love for the program (after the Chiefs lost in 1997 in the playoffs and KU lost to Arizona that season, I took down everything I had and boxed it up ... got it back out a few years later promising I'd never get to that point again). The bigger the action, the rougher the reaction .. I kidded yesterday in a post that I just took the revolver away from my temple (knowing a few here think I should have finished the deal and put everyone out of their misery)

It IS still good to be a Jayhawk fan. But man, I can't wait for the Final Four to be over with!

bradynsdad 8 years, 8 months ago

Bcraven I know that feeling. I read these posts after a loss just to calm me down. I know it sounds silly but alot of these people overeact and it makes me think that I shouldn't get that upset. My wife is very supportive of me and the hawks even though I am a jerk when we lose. I also have a shrine of hawk memorabilia with an autographed copy of self's at home in the phog. As pissed as I was I will still get all warm and tingly come preseason. Anger has never changed a refs opinion on a call and it she won't change the scores of our games. Rock chalk!!!

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

I didn't realize that you lashed out at me. I've been less attentive to this website this week as I also recover my sanity and regroup my emotions.

But thanks for the public apology... or whatever it was supposed to be. I don't do winky faces, but if I did I would put one here.

Rock Chalk. And thank goodness I never felt the need to take inventory of all of my KU gear. It would take months! And my office would be empty.

That said. I live in Houston, and was this close <-> to buying Final Four tickets Sunday (when KU closed the lead to 4 points). But now the whole festivity just is bittersweet.

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

I have a recipe for crow, which you don't need, and for backing off, which you say you need, but I think you did just fine.

I have had to develop these recipes for myself. They are palatable. :-)

Ethan Berger 8 years, 8 months ago

I dont remember you ever saying anything unfair to me, but much respect for coming out and saying what you did.

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

I would have thought that if this season taught us anything it is that there are bigger things in life than BasketBall. RCJHKU.

Clydecito 8 years, 8 months ago

Selby wasn't ready to play. He sat out the summer with a broken hand (and arguably lost his handle), then sat out with the penalty for a third of the season, then he sat with the foot problem. He should be fine next year if he stays, as he has at least seen the nuances of a complicated offense. I don't want a plate full of one and dones. I want kids from Kansas (and elsewhere) willing to spend 4 or 5 years developing their games and enjoying the college life, who cry when they lose. EJ was a turnover machine and benching him is how to teach hotdogs to value possessions and commit to team play. He got a lot better this season but wasn't ready to play pg full time, even if we all wanted him to when TT had his attention deficit issues, lazy one hand passes, and drives to no where. When other fans start talking about choke jobs, I just ask them when their teams' third loss was? Bad shooting days happen.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

To say this was a bad shooting day is way over simplifying things. It is that sort of approach that eliminates the ability to find the true answers.

Ethan Berger 8 years, 8 months ago

Is that right? Is the answer always harder to find? The more and more i think about the game, the more i believe it was just one of those nights. When we were up 6-2, we had a chance to get in to 12-2 with two wide open threes, instead they missed and the momentum switched. Id say we had 15 wide open threes and only made 2. Missed 15 free throws. I don't believe the "we were tired" theory because our first half shooting was awful. We won the big 12 tourney in 3 games in 3 days. It was an off night, to get to the final four and win it all, you need a little luck on your side, VCU got that luck.

utahjayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Agree with HEM. Not everything is overly complex but I feel your post oversimplifies the matter. To me, it was strictly mental, knowing we should have handled vcu fairly easily.

I think Coach might want to rethink his overuse of the stick and provide moe carrot. In the end, can you really get the best out of these kids unless they're playing loosely?

Sally Presson 8 years, 8 months ago

In Self we Trust!!! I wouldn't trade Bill Self for any coach in the country. why on earth are you blaming Coach Self for Josh's not playing much this year. Did you ever think that Josh was under way too much pressure for a freshman? Now next year he'll be acclamated to the college game and he'll be the super star we know he can be. He's got it in him, but his play this season isn't Bill Self's fault. Blame the dang NCAA for taking so long to release him, blame Kentucky for making the NCAA look stupid so they made KU & Josh pay. Xavier did nothing to help KU, he was never tuned in. Played like he had his mind elsewhere. Josh you're going to be good next year for KU. This 1 & done thing the NBA shoved down our throats, sure isn't good for the colleges and really isn't good for the boys. these kids are still really young men and need the guidence of college coaches and playing time. I sure hope our guys look really hard at the situation with the NBA and the lockdown. Wait a year until all this settles down, keep playing, and shoot for a championship! Rock Chalk

kranny 8 years, 8 months ago

Quite simply our guards although capable were not what I would call "championship guards". Our guard play was very inconsistent. Brady was a product of hard work and tenacity but wasn't highly recruited and had to redshirt. Tyrel somewhat similar, not highly recruited, streaky shooter at best, but a solid player even though injured. Tyshawn has been inconsistent as we all know and not dependable. Selby will be a good one. Needs to have an uninterrupted season. EJ will be a good one, needs playing time. I think Naadir Tharpe will be the true point that we've needed. To win a national championship, a college team needs guards who will be in the NBA and dependable, they need to play defense also. I'd like to know the total number of steals compared to the "08 squad. Mario was giving this team guff about not being able to play defense.

Justin Lindsley 8 years, 8 months ago

Speaking of Lafrentz.... If D. Manning ever decides to test out being the Head coach somewhere. I would love to see HCBS bring in Raef, if he is willing of course, to take D. Manning spot. I know that Raef didn't have huge success in the League. Think back to his days as a Hawk. He was awesome. He was dominant. He was a great post player who did have some range also. I think he could be a great person to keep developing bigs @ KU!!!

GoNkrzy 8 years, 8 months ago

For those of you bagging on HCBS, I say you are both spoiled and short sighted. We KU fans are spoiled, if we don't win each and every game many of us have a come-apart...OMG we're falling apart, we've lost our focus, the coach can't recruit or coach....Please, get a grip. Remember prior to the season, how just about everyone thought there was no way KU would win the league. Heck, even Mr. Know-it-all, Dickey V had us picked as either forth or fifth in the league. We lost three valuable parts of the team last year and for our team to pull together and accomplish what it did was remarkable. Yet, here we sit, many of us bitching and moaning because we got dumped from the Elite 8. I do believe that none of the other number 1 seeds made it that far. But, being as we're so spoiled, we bemoan the fact we didn't make it any farther into the tournament. I absolutely hate the fact we've lost to the likes of UNI and VCU, but in a one and done tourney, when someone gets hot and the other team can't hit squat...guess who win's. Regardless, I still love watching the Hawks, it hurts to lose any game, but they're still my team. Lastly, I think HCBS did a tremendous job this year, as have a few others...witness the Coach of the Year award for the Big 12.

Hank Cross 8 years, 8 months ago

A couple of points.

First, Self saying that KU needs to sign a wing must really put Travis's mind to rest. I wouldn't blame him at all if he regrets not making his reshirt year a transfer year.

Second, suppose the twins, TRob and Selby all declare for the draft. That would leave TT, EJ, Travis, and Withey as starters. That's not a NC team, but it is a core that can be built upon. Mix in a decent/project PF and that team wins around 20 games and is a mid-level seed in the tourney, maybe even a S16 team. Although it's won't be what we're used to, if EJ, Travis and Withey progress - then you can add in some good recruits in 12-13 (that big from TX is already committed) and take a real shot at the NC.

I'm not a fan of the OAD concept and it takes special circumstances to ride one to the NC. OADs also don't suit Self's style and temprament. If you're going to go the OAD route, you have to let them play through all kinds of mistakes and lose games because of them. To be fair to Self, not many coaches are suited for that and you can make a strong argument that OADs are not good for the college game.

I'd rather it take a year or two to build a strong, tough team than send another talented, but slapped together team to suffer another embarassing defeat in the tourney.

Justin Lindsley 8 years, 8 months ago

I love coach Self and his staff and how they have built on what Roy Williams did. They have taken KU to another level. Coach Self forgot more about basketball than I could ever possibly know. I just cannot figure out why we can't pressure the ball full court more. Everyone claims that our bench is so deep than why can't we pressure the ball more. VCU certainly did, and it worked out pretty well for them. I also wonder why other players can play 35+ minutes a game and our guys only play 25. Is our conditioning not good enough. If we have "better" athletes than most teams that we play than our players should be able to play 35+. I understand that if we have a stacked bench then you should play them. There is only 40 min. in a game. However, at crunch time. The best players should be able to bring it for 40 if need be. There are many stoppage of play to get a breather. Self must have his reasons for not pressuring the ball more. And I trust his judgement. I'm just saying?

Viggo3003 8 years, 8 months ago

Hey Lindhawk I was always of the same thought as you about the full court pressure until I heard a preseason interview with Bill Self this year. He was asked why he didn't press more. He gave a very thoughtful and detailed answer that any coach must coach to what his core beliefs are. One of his main core beliefs he stated was "Do not give up easy transition baskets." He said no matter how well you press you will always give up some easy transition baskets so to be a pressing team goes against every fiber of his coaching philosophy. He said there many different philosophies and no one is right or wrong but if you do not coach your team to your core beliefs you will never achieve great success in his opinion. He then stated he is not opposed to pressing for periods of times but that his teams would never be considered "pressing teams". When I heard the interview it made me finally stop asking about it. I tried to find a link to the audio or the transcript but couldn't find it. Anyway for what it's worth he was passionate about the answer. Rock Chalk.

Kevin Huffman 8 years, 8 months ago

I have a feeling we're going to land McLemore, Daniels & Simpson.

Would be nice getting a 6'-5, 6'-8 & 6'-10 guy, when I suspect we'll have Reed, Morningstar, Little AND the Morris's leave.

Daniels (though slight of build) & Simpson help inside & McLemore can play the Reed role....along with Woolridge possibly. Releford takes on the Morningstar role.

Joe Baker 8 years, 8 months ago

I really like our prospects. Our bigs will be fine.

TT/Tharpe EJ/Selby?/CGar (Selby may need to stay but his body language is pushing NBA) Rel/BMac TRob?/Daniels/Anderson Withey/Wesley/Porter/Simpson (The Illini fans in Chicago say that Simpson will choose KU but he has some academic issues in juco, which a tutor should help and Cal has his paws on him too. He may get a Porsche if he goes to uk.)

I really thought the twins would be back if we fell short this year. If so, it will change Simpson and Porter. I think we'll still grab Anderson if Selby goes to the NBA.

Joe Baker 8 years, 8 months ago

Shame on me for overlooking RW. He'll play some more mins behind EJ. Self really thought early last yr that Royce would grow another inch or two.

Sorry Royce, I've got big expectations of you. I can't believe that oversight.

Craig Colgin 8 years, 8 months ago

You also overlooked Teahan! Im just saying....

Joe Baker 8 years, 8 months ago

Yeah- but not intentionally. I think he could be a huge key for this team. I just don't think he has the personality, skills or athleticism to be much of a factor IF we get the talent Self is "swinging" for at this point.

I would put him in the 3 rotation in most games, but if he is a true 6-5, he'll play a Little type role. I hope he improves from last yr and his shot is consistent enough to earn him some quality mins/games.

I think he's good, but is he that certain type of good player that KU needs to move this Elite 8 team to the next level? He does remind or could be much like Howard with Butler. I hope he proves me wrong because I'll be happy to admit that I was wrong.

John Boyle 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm pretty sure we will have Reed, Morningstar and Little leave as well since they are seniors.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm not sure there are many 'home runs' still out there. Any that are will probably wait to see who leaves for the NBA or Europe before committing. And if another top school has an immediate need, that is where they probably will go. I was looking at Rivals and Scout for 2011 and 2012 and there aren't many ;sure things' left. I've seen HCBS do some amazing things at the last moment and pick up some great talent as coaches leave programs or transfers, so I can't rule it out but as of now our recruiting class comprises a 5'11 guard ranked in the 90's.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

Certainly not at the 4-5 spots. We have struck out on guys in the top 100. I certainly hope we do not settle for guys that will clog scholarships for years to come, or on Juco guys that are inferior or that aren't inferior (but went to Juco due to character problems .. grades, I don't care about).

Lance Hobson 8 years, 8 months ago

I think Self is in a bit of a recruiting slump, a lot of it has to do with Cal's success the past few years. There was a time when everyone gushed about Self's recruiting, so I don't have much doubt he'll get back in the grove soon.

Craig Colgin 8 years, 8 months ago

Food for thought:

With the past two seasons ending like they did (Even though I don't consider this year to be as monumental in the defeat column as last year). I have often found myself wondering. Is Bill Self ready to win a National Championship? Yes, I know, he already has so that sounds completely dumb right? Or does it? For years I thought Roy Williams was on the cusp of doing something ridiculous at KU. But, we all know the sad truth. He was never able to win the BIG ONE at KU. How about now? I think he has proven that he can win the BIG ONE and compete at that level on a very consistent basis. Now, please don't misunderstand me. I'm not drawing yet another pointless comparison like is often seen on this site between Bill Self and Roy Williams. I coundn't be happier to have HCBS!!! What Im simply trying to say is this. I refuse to believe that it was KU that was the problem for Roy, and I refuse to believe that it is KU that is the problem for Bill Self. Im ready to consider the possibility that Roy just hadn't been around the block enough to win us the title when he was here, and that now he has. Likewise, Bill Self has simply not been around the block enough to win titles on a consistent basis, But he will get there. The more I think of this conclusion, the more I think it may be true and that 2008 was simply a year that we had so so so much talent that HCBS did not have to the experience he may need now. I would never try to take way from that season for Coach Self, he did do a great job. But it does make me wonder if that team would have won even without him, if someone else was the coach. I know that this may seem way off base to some, but I ask that you please go gently when you attack me. Im not saying this is the case, Im just offering up some things that have been on my mind. Now I have rambled on and on and further perplexed my already spinning mind and Im still back here with the same thoughts. I love Coach Self, I love this team, I love being a Jayhawk!!!!!

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 8 months ago

To be honest..I think this years team was better than last years. No real way of measuring but this years loss has been much harder to take. Maybe its because the Championship seemed to be within reach. But I too love being a Jayhawk!

utahjayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

In isolation maybe both losses are equally disappointing but this year is far worse for me immediately on the heels of last year (in tourney time).

Unfortunately for all of us, the true and only measurement of our success, being an elite program, is how well we do in the Big Dance.

Who would trade all 7 league championships for only one more FF? I would.

lee3022 8 years, 8 months ago

At various stages in Coach K's career fans have wondered the same thing. Long droughts between wins. But from my limited perspective it takes more than being a great coach to win the NCAA championship. In a one-loss elimination tournament every game is a coin toss. It only takes one game (or even one half of one game) when your shooters do not hit and you are gone. Does anyone think KU had no shooters? Of course not. A coach can only put his players into position to make plays. He cannot shoot himself.

There is only one coach in NCAA history that has defied the odds and that is John Wooden. And his success came in having a half-dozen of the very best players want to play for him every year. The winning of a conference championship is harder than an NCAA championship. A substantial number of teams have failed to win the league but have won the NCAA.

I am satisfied with and appreciative of Bill Self. He will have some years better than others. This year was assured to be a down year with the loss of three of his starters from last year. What he accomplished leaves me grateful. I hope others can see this as well.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 8 months ago

Next year, reaching the NCAA and keeping the streak going might be considered a success.

Ludwig Supraphonic 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm still following all the post-season comments as a way of coping with my disappointment. I feel petty in my grief for one loss in a season that exceeded preseason expectations. I agree with some of the postmortem comments that seek to recreate some scenerio with a more acceptable outcome. The psychological autopsy lamenting alternately overly stoic or histrionic behavior by HCBS, our Seniors, our fanbase or LJW et al seems over the top. I'm glad to be part of something that engenders so much passion. RCJHKU

William Weissbeck 8 years, 8 months ago

I like the Red Sox analogy. Can also use the Cubs and the old Brooklyn Dodgers. In the end, are we loyal to the Jayhawks because that is who we are? Then winning isn't the most important thing. Playing hard and bringing respect are. Dean Smith had a Final Four problem, and even loyal fans found his style boring, but the fans never wanted to see him leave. We don't really want to come much closer to Calpari's type of program than we already are. Were we really thrilled to recruit Henry as a one and done? Seemed to me at the time that with both his parents KU alums that he should have been the one calling Self for the chance to play in the Phog. Remember the oldest Rush brother? That didn't go over well. Hopefully, Selby doesn't get bad advice, or his foot turns out like Brandon Rush's knee and forces him to stay. This recruiting game is a hard nut to crack - where did Kemba Walker suddenly appear from?

Ron Franklin 8 years, 8 months ago

I think it is interesting how many folks do jump ship until fall! Then, there are those who speed their lives away by spending most of their time from April, longing for October, only to once again find April coming too quickly.

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

"Reading Betwixt and Between the Lines"

Self is thinking most about guards, or wings, as he corrects himself, to replace Tyrel and Brady.

This kind makes clear that Royce and Travis are either not enough, or are not the right players for Self at the 2 and 3.

Next, he says they have to have two bigs, but only if the Morrii jump.

What can we infer from these comments.

I infer:

a) TRob is staying;

b) he thinks Withey will play next year;

c) Tyshawn, EJ, and Royce will not be considered for the 3, and Travis is not enough;

d) Self is cool with TRob and Withey as backups to the Morrii, or as starters with two late date signees.

He also isn't going to sit around and wait for the Morrii, or anyone else to deliberate about what they are going to do this year.

Fish or cut bait...and lose your ride.

Self sounds like the Morri should go pro, if there were no lock out, but because there is he thinks they ought to stay.

Self also sounds like he thinks TRob definitely ought to stay and that he is kind of incredulous that TRob is even thinking about testing the waters.

jayhawktalk 8 years, 8 months ago

The only thing I read into the comment about the need for guards/wings is this:

"My best remaining prospects are perimeter players, so I would be an idiot to say something different in an interview (that if they do not see on their own, a competing recruiter will certainly show them) than what I am telling them, which is that they fill my most critical need, and will have a chance to compete for significant playing time... Next year's class is packed with quality bigs, so assuming not everyone bails after this year, I should be able to reload with quality post players with 1 yrs patience."

jayhawktalk 8 years, 8 months ago

P.S. I, imho, do not believe his comments have anything to do with his perception of Releford or any other current guards/wings possible playing time or contributions next year. In fact, does anyone who has watched Self not believe he will take care of the upper classmen who have bought into the program and contributed to its success over the years? I don't.

Tragically, if TRel played 30+ minutes per game for the remainder of his KU playing days, was the best defender on the team, played unselfishly and worried about team first and stats a distant second or third, but was not in the top 4 players on the team in scoring, there is no doubt in my mind that a number of fans would be lamenting that To-Be-Determined-Future-Underclassman should be getting half his minutes, because, despite the underclassman's 30% FG and 6 turnovers per 10 minutes played, they are simply playing poorly because Self needs to sacrifice at all costs for the sake of TBD underclassman's development. When said underclassman did not get these minutes, any loss could then be referenced as if it were evidence that the speculative theory was correct, as there would be no way to prove the hypothesis incorrect.

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

Wow! I don't follow you at all. But if it works for you, okay by me. :-)

boomrsoonr26 8 years, 8 months ago

Watching the McDonalds All-American game and not a single KU kid on the court. Texas has 1 kid, which means Rick Barnes can stil recruit, but forgets how to coach in March. OSU has a stud, and it was only a matter of time before Travis Ford got talent back in Stillwater.

Kentucky: 4 Duke: 3 UNC / Syracuse / Louisville: 2

boomrsoonr26 8 years, 8 months ago

But the more I think about it, maybe its better KU doesnt have MAM's. I wouldnt want anything close to 1 and dones. I want juniors and seniors personally.

okiedave 8 years, 8 months ago

Travis Ford will always have one good stud player at OSU and challenge for the conference title about once every 30 years. OSU would drop kick Ford so quick if they thought they could get Self down in Stillwater.

Geekinout 8 years, 8 months ago

Watching the McDonald's All-American game right now... Why doesn't KU (Bill Self) have at least one of these players coming in next year? I know some of these players don't ever live up to the high expectations, but it's nice to know when KU lands one or a few per year...

Dan Pawlowski 8 years, 8 months ago

Peace Out for now folks. Time to step back and enjoy the important things in life..Family , Friends.. etc.

okiedave 8 years, 8 months ago

Nice article on Bill Self in the Tulsa World by Dave Sittler - 2nd story from the top.

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