Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Coaches tap Bill Self fourth for X’s, O’s

Kansas head coach Bill Self takes questions during a news conference following the NCAA selection show, Sunday, March 17, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self takes questions during a news conference following the NCAA selection show, Sunday, March 17, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas University’s Bill Self has been named the fourth-best “X’s and O’s coach” in college basketball, according to 250 NCAA Div. I coaches polled by

Michigan State’s Tom Izzo placed No. 1 in the poll and was followed by Michigan’s John Beilein, Louisville’s Rick Pitino, 11th-year KU coach Self, Davidson’s Bob McKillop, Utah State’s Stew Morrill, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski, Florida’s Billy Donovan, Belmont’s Rick Byrd and Vanderbilt’s Kevin Stallings.

Cal’s Mike Montgomery and Temple’s Fran Dunphy tied for 11th, followed by Wisconsin’s Bo Ryan (13th), Indiana’s Tom Crean (tied for 14th), Marquette’s Buzz Williams (T14), and Kentucky’s John Calipari, Boston College’s Steve Donahue and Gonzaga’s Mark Few (all three tied for 16th). Georgetown’s John Thompson III, Notre Dame’s Mike Brey, Arizona’s Sean Miller, Miami’s Jim Larranaga and Denver’s Joe Scott tied for 19th. Virginia’s Tony Bennett and Iowa State’s Fred Hoiberg tied for 24th.

Former KU coaches Roy Williams (North Carolina) and Larry Brown (SMU) did not place in the top 25. Williams has won two national titles at UNC and Brown one NCAA crown (KU).

Of Self, former KU guard Rex Walters, the head coach at San Francisco, said: “Bill is really good in getting quality shots in late-game situations. You have to have good X’s and O’s, good personnel and good presence. Bill has all three.”

Earlier this summer, Self was voted No.2 head-coach recruiter behind UK’s Calipari. KU’s Kurtis Townsend was named top recruiting assistant coach in the U.S. For ESPN’s rankings go to

Alexander likes KU: There’s chatter in the recruiting world that KU leads for Cliff Alexander, a 6-foot-8, 240-pound senior forward from Chicago Curie High. Alexander, who is rated No. 4 nationally by, also is considering Michigan State, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisville, Arizona, Baylor, Memphis, DePaul and Indiana.

“Most everyone agrees that Kansas is either the leader or the co-leader along with Michigan State, and it’s not just because Alexander is dating a member of the KU women’s basketball team, either,” writes ESPN’s Jeff Goodman. “The Jayhawks will likely have a spot for a big man after losing fifth-year senior Tarik Black and also potentially — even likely — losing talented big man Joel Embiid after just one season in Lawrence. Bill Self’s track record of getting big men the ball also comes into play, and his ability to land the No. 1 player in the land, Andrew Wiggins, doesn’t hurt in terms of momentum. The Jayhawks also recently added Jerrance Howard to the coaching staff, a former Illinois player/coach who has strong ties in the city and is extremely well-liked in the area.”

Alexander will be visiting KU officially for the Oct. 4 Late Night in the Phog.


Randy Bombardier 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Yeah, I always hated seeing us up against Izzo. He's a good one. Also Boeheim. I dont think Michigan out coached us but thought that big freshman outplayed our big senior. I will take no. 4. Better than Roy. Roy was not a good tactical coach IMO.


Kevin Huffman 7 months, 3 weeks ago

***So apparently we weren't even mentioned so we must not be an option. Sounds like he's going to decide by tomorrow.

Somehow I have doubts about Minnesota. I think he'd only been thinking about them if R. Vaughn was also going there (they had talked about pairing up).

I think it's really down to UCLA or Gonzaga.

I suspect that it's Gonzaga.

IF he declares UCLA we might have a LOT better shot at Jordan McLaughlin then, who UNLIKE Perkins we did NOT quit recruiting and who IS one of the Late Night attendees. One of the things I'd most like about McLaughlin is that because he doesn't have great NBA-size for a PG he might have to be no less than a 2AD if not 3AD. Would be PERFECT to learn under Tharpe in his first season. Roy used to get a lot of his backcourt players from out of California (Ad. Jordan, Walters (ok, Northwestern transfer but from Cali.), Haase, J. Vaughn to name a few). Since Self we really haven't had that many California kids period - Withey's the only one that comes to mind and he was a transfer from 'zona.

The only real knock on McLaughlin is that he has to get stronger. Ummm, I think we can do that with him coming off the bench in his first year and ready to star most likey by his Sophomore year.

Ideal situation is we land McLaughlin & Alexander in the Fall and IF (almost seems likely) Embiid turns pro, Turner would most likely come to us.

I'd been saying for a while how much I like Oubre, but we have some depth there with White III & B. Greene. If Oubre would want to come here he might want to wait 'til spring too.....all will have a better idea if one or both will / could see major mins. in coming seasons as this season goes along. Of course, Oubre coudl be in a similar situation as Turner. He'd be smart to play it 'til Spring and see if Selden were to come out early.

If we lost all of Selden, Wiggins, Black & Embiid - a 4-some recruiting class of McLaughlin, Oubre, Alexander & Turner isn't too shabby especially with some talent still there as well - Tharpe (Sr. season), Ellis, Br. Greene, etc.

***I would argue that McLaughlin & Alexander have no reason to play the Waiting Game though - well at least not with how it would work from our end. Even if only Black left we'd find way to get minutes for Ellis, him AND Embiid enough to make all three happy I'm sure.


Michael Auchard 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Hire his girlfriend. (Of course, I mean in an non-NCAA-violating way). But hire her.


DanR 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Purely X's and O's, a couple of women's coaches like Geno Auriemma and Pat Summit (pre-alzheimers) should be on this list... ahead of Calipari for sure.


William Blake 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Best X's and O's coach?

Shouldn't that be defined first?

Does that only mean who is the best at game coaching?

What about practice coaching?

What about execution coaching?

What about play strategy coaching?

What about defensive coaching?

What about offensive coaching?

What about game motivation coaching?

What about practice motivation coaching?

What about team-play coaching?

What about individual skills coaching?

What about personal inspiration coaching?

What about the final 2-minutes coaching?

What about away game coaching?

What about rebounding coaching?

What about shooting coaching?

What about ball screen coaching?

What about bench coaching?

Every one of those aspects, at some point, gets illustrated on a board with X's and O's....


Greg Ledom 7 months, 3 weeks ago

How Larry is not top 5 is beyond me. The master of X's and O's and the only coach to have won both a college and pro championship. Go figure.


Ryan Patti 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Guys check out my YouTube channel "RockChalkToTheGrave". I make KU discussion videos about new updates and headlines that come out each day. I also have some sick throwback highlight videos of certain players so please check those out as well. THANKS AND ROCK CHALK!!


Chris Shaw 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Here is the deal with the 1988 team and Larry Brown, Danny Manning, and Milt Newton.

1) Are we sure Larry Brown devised the whole up tempo game plan of the first half? According to this video and Milt Newton...Danny said screw it and told the team to run with Oklahoma in the first half. Just an interesting perspective.

2) My favorite all-time KU highlight (Yes, more so than Mario Chalmers) happens at the 6:53 mark with Milt Newtons reverse layup.

3) Watching this video makes me realize why Bill Self does some of the things he does with his teams. It's also a reason why I think he's stubborn and plays down to the competition during the Big Dance.

4) I really believe that Clint Normore (#4) is actually Sherron Collins and that Sherron Collins has 2 National Championships 20 years apart.


Kevin Huffman 7 months, 3 weeks ago

No. 1 thing Bill always seems to do best is have an offensive play drawn up coming out of halftime that seems to ALWAYS work - like clockwork.


jayhawkinnc 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Milt actually went 6 for 6 in the '88 title game, not 5 for 5. Just sayin..... :)


jaybate 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Part 2

9 Byrd--fuggedabouthim. Advantage Self.

10 Stallings--I know he has KU connections and we're supposed to be nice to our own, but others have done as well at Vanderbilt and no one can recall their names. Advantage Self.

Leaving Roy and LB off the list just shows how stupid the majority of D1 college basketball coaches actually are.

Here is my ranking for who I want on the bench if the game is tied in the National finals with 12 seconds to go.

1 tie Consonants/LB

2 tie Pitino/Self/Donovan

3 tie Roy/Izzo

That's it.


jaybate 7 months, 3 weeks ago

"Ball Licking, or Numbers Bias: You Can't Rely on the Coaches for Who Is Best at Xs and Os."

Part 1

Seven or eight of ten coaches are in the eastern time zone. At worst, this list is an Eastern Time Zone ball licking contest of eastern time zone coaches stroking themselves. At best, it means the Eastern Time Zone simply has a far greater number of D1 coaches and this tips the scales in favor of EST coaches. You choose. I choose the former.

1 Izzo-Ratso Izzo proves year in and year out that unless he can out muscle teams, he can't out strategize an opposing coach, if his life depends on it. Ratso's record confirms that unless he is two deep with prison bodies, and has at least one great player, he can't win 30. His W&L statement is inferior to Self's. I know he has Self's number right now, because he has met Self teams when Bill was short on muscle, or experience, or depth. But Self will fix that shortly. Advantage Self.

2 Bellein-Depends on the Princeton. This system requires the least strategic innovation of all the offenses in D1, since it is a do-loop system of set plays with players making menu choices. For Bellein, the main choice with the system is whether to tell his team to walk it up the court and run six plays, or hurry it up the court, run six plays and then start repeating the six plays. Slow thinkers and uncreative types like the Princeton, because its rote. Self is fast on his feet and creative. Self's W&L statement is way better. Bellein's one win over Self was a lucky one in a million win because of an absolutely fabulous shooting point guard--not because of Bellein. Advantage Self.

3 Pitino--Slick Rick can coach, no two ways about it. And he can diagram and improvise, and deserves to be on the list. Alas, his record documents that unless his team is stacked he can't win more than 26-28 games. Self can take a team without a single OAD or Mickey D to the Finals and win 30. Self's W&L statement is better. But Rick has coached longer and won twice as many rings. Advantage even.

4 Self

5 McKillop--shouldn't even be on the list. No one would even recall his name without Stephen Curry. Advantage Self.

6 Morill-I haven't studied him closely enough to say for sure, but he's a Dan Fitzgerald disciple from the Gonzaga line of coaches and these guys have clawed and scratched out a hard scrabble game out of Big Rock Candy Mountain country the same way Henry Iba and Doyle Parrock once did north of the Red River. But Self's record is way better and he made it in a vastly tougher conference. Advantage Self.

7 Consonants--I hate the guy, but he has to be the best until he quits.

8 Donovan--Serious coaching chops. No one else on this list has one two in a row. But he struggles keeping his W&L statement up without a lot of Mickey Ds. Advantage even.


Preston Dwiggins 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Coach K #1, Coach Self #2. End of story IMO.


wrwlumpy 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Billy Packer called Self the best coach to set up a play after a time out or at the beginning of the second half. I remember the back door screen for Sasha at the start of the second half in the championship game, the EJ to Tyshawn back cut for a dunk from the point guard against MU at home,and when Sherron was here, he was the final 10 sec option to get to the rim with all other spread out. With "No point guard" last year, Mac was the option using the Mario over the top 3 pt. play ala Iowa State at home and other sometimes successful, some not during the final secs. of a half.

Self says he also steals great plays from other coaches. I don't know where he got the 3 out of bounds plays that killed Ohio State in Columbus.


Chris Shaw 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Bob McKillop is one heck of a coach. Davidson is his home and I respect a guy like McKillop who has stayed at Davidson so long. He knows he is the only person for that job. Talk about a guy who gets maximum value out of the teams he develops.


farnamjayhawk 7 months, 3 weeks ago

I will take the #2 recruiter and the #4 X's and O's coach anyday. I like that combination


nuleafjhawk 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Here's the x's and o's that matter to me - Win / Loss record for the past 5 years

173-20 John Calipari 164-24 Bill Self 152-30 Mike Krzyzewski 151-38 Roy Williams 140-40 Jim Boeheim 140-36 Dave Rose 140-43 Thad Matta 139-40 Brad Stevens 134-48 Tom Izzo 133-35 Randy Bennett

according to


Andrew Cox 7 months, 3 weeks ago

And we are back! Thank god that mobile site was killing me!


clevelandjayhawker 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Who is he dating on the womens team?


iamakufan 7 months, 3 weeks ago

As far as whether Self is about to become a better recruiter than Calipari, I think he already is. Calipari may get the most top drawer players but he seems to not even consider whether those players will meld together as a team. Self goes after top players who will fit together as a team and will actually like each other.


JJHAWK 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Best X's and O's coach I've ever seen in person is Larry Brown. He never should have beaten Oklahoma in 88. He simply outcoached Tubbs. Of course things broke for us that day as Milt Newton going 5 for 5 wasn't an everyday affair.

Best defensive coach - Bill Self

Prettiest Basketball I've watched coach - Roy Williams.

Best overall coach - Bill Self


Ashwin Rao 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Interesting to note that I didn't see Syracuse coach, Jim Boeheim, in this list.


FearlessJayhawk 7 months, 3 weeks ago

This sounds more like a popularity contest with the poll being taken in Michigan. A bunch of bull.


jhawkinaz 7 months, 3 weeks ago

I agree with the post above, though I will say self didnt want to do it this way because he can take any type of talent and make them better but some greasy haired cheater left him no choice to get the one and dones but do it in a more classy way, rcjh!!


William Blake 7 months, 3 weeks ago

I believe we are on the threshold of seeing a different Bill Self. His outstanding record was built with talented players... but typically not the top shelf. So he did it through running a disciplined team... operating within his structure.

Last year was a small taste of experiencing Bill Self working with a special player in BMac. As good as BMac was... he wasn't a "type A" personality who could take over a game. However, we watched Bill try to get BMac to take over games. That was the first step in seeing a different Bill Self strategy.

This year he has Andrew... who is more capable of taking over games and seems to have the "type A" tools to take over games.

This will be interesting for all of us to watch... and will fulfill a big dream of Bill Self himself: to coach the best player(s) in the game.

Calipari is sweating bullets... knowing Bill has the potential of dethroning him to become the best recruiter in the college basketball. He already lost top target in Andrew... and could lose the top recruits for the coming years.


jhawkinaz 7 months, 3 weeks ago

John beilein! Lol! Dude had one good year because he put the ball into burkes hands and trey worked his magic, I know this is just a poll but beilein isn't in the same class as self as far as late game situations or any of the top coaches for that matter, just my opinion but geez


TexiCaliHawk 7 months, 3 weeks ago

I don't know how you actually rank 'Xs and Os' and I understand there are many variables that go into it; however, all you really have to do is look at Bill's 10-year tenure at KU as the winningest program in NCAA Basketball to realize that he combines (at least) both Recruiting prowess and 'Xs and O's' knowledge -- of course, the intangibles such as inspirational leadership/player trust in getting HS phenoms to 'buy-in' to his D-first system and stellar assistant coaching support should also be factored in.

Also, I'm loving how the AW momentum continues to pay dividends in attracting other Top Talent to put KU at/near the top of their 'Wish List' -- now, we've just got to remember the "A, B, C's of selling" and close the ones we want and throw back the rest . . . "Coffee is for closers!" ;-)



Commenting has been disabled for this item.