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It's Hall of Fame Week for KU coach Bill Self

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Kansas head coach Bill Self raises up the fieldhouse following the Jayhawks' 87-86 overtime win over Missouri on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2012.

Kansas head coach Bill Self raises up the fieldhouse following the Jayhawks' 87-86 overtime win over Missouri on Saturday, Feb. 25, 2012. by Nick Krug

Throughout the past decade or so of Kansas basketball you’ve heard — perhaps even said — the chatter, in any given year, about how KU’s roster was so deep that its second five could finish in the Top half of the Big 12 Conference.

Although we’ve never been able to find out for sure, on many occasions, the claim certainly has seemed true, as KU coach Bill Self often has stacked his roster with such incredible depth and talent that it’s hard to believe so many talented players could be on the same team.

So what if we apply that line of thinking to Bill Self’s coaching career and imagine for a second that Self, who is set to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday, could actually still have a Hall of Fame career ahead of him, too.

Think about it. While the grinding Self did at Oral Roberts, Tulsa and even Illinois positioned him for the job at Kansas, where he has won at an unprecedented rate and established a pace and set records that may never been seen again, it’s possible that Self’s best years are still ahead.

That’s not to take anything away from the turnaround at Oral Roberts, the deep tournament run at Tulsa or the national runner-up roster he built at Illinois. All of those achievements played a big part in Self being selected for the Hall of Fame the first time he appeared on the ballot. But there’s no doubt that his achievements at Kansas put him over the top.

One national championship, a pair of Final Fours, seven Elite Eight appearances, and, of course, a record-tying run of 13 consecutive Big 12 titles and counting. Without those feats on his resume, Self may still be waiting for the call from the Hall. But even if he were, isn’t it conceivable that what lies ahead for Self and the Jayhawks might actually top what he’s done to this point?

OK, he probably won’t win another 13 Big 12 titles in a row and push the incredible streak to 26 — but would you bet against it? And, depending on how long he plans to continue coaching, it’s no sure thing that he’ll get to another seven Elite Eights.

But can’t you see a few more Final Fours and another national title or two in Self’s future?

If so, you know that a bunch of victories would come with them, and that alone — what Self does from this point forward — likely would be enough to get him into the Hall of Fame in and of itself.

As it stands today, though, he doesn’t have to wait.

And while we wait for the week ahead, which will include all kinds of coverage of Self’s induction into the Hall of Fame, including stories and photos from the KUsports.com staff in Springfield, Mass., here’s a quick look back at our Bill Self “Hall of Fame Material” series in late March and early April that led up to the announcement and included thoughts from some of the people who know Self best.

Current Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self, left, and former KU coach Larry Brown visit on the bench during the Legends of the Phog game Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Current Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self, left, and former KU coach Larry Brown visit on the bench during the Legends of the Phog game Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Mike Yoder

Part I: Hall of Famer, Larry Brown

“I’m in awe of what he’s done.” — Larry Brown

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self is a Hall of Famer in daughter Lauren's eyes for more than his 600-plus victories and crowded trophy case. His ability to mentor young people while also achieving success on the court at the highest level has impressed her the most.

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self is a Hall of Famer in daughter Lauren's eyes for more than his 600-plus victories and crowded trophy case. His ability to mentor young people while also achieving success on the court at the highest level has impressed her the most. by Contributed photo

Part II: Bill Self’s daughter, Lauren

“I’m definitely not always there and don’t understand a lot of things that go into the day to day grind of being a coach, but I know how hard he works and what’s important to him. It is incredible to see guys stand up on senior night and share not only the impact that my dad has had on them as a player but also as a man.... To pour his life into these guys, some of whom come to college really lost, the hard work isn’t just in the X’s and O’s of basketball but in helping build these people into adults and helping them make something of their lives. I really admire that about my dad. He’s always wanted to be the best. He wants to win. But I don’t think it’s ever been just about him.” — Lauren (Self) Browning

Kansas head coach Bill Self and Kansas guard Frank Mason III (0) pound fists as Mason leaves the game late in the second half on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla.

Kansas head coach Bill Self and Kansas guard Frank Mason III (0) pound fists as Mason leaves the game late in the second half on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla. by Nick Krug

Part III: 2016-17 National Player of the Year, Frank Mason III

“Just look at the numbers and the history he’s been a part of here, and even before here. It’s just unbelievable what he’s been able to do.” — Frank Mason III

Kansas coach Bill Self, right, peeks around assistant coach Doc Sadler during practice for a second-round game in the NCAA basketball tournament at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, March 21, 2013. Kansas is scheduled to play Western Kentucky on Friday.

Kansas coach Bill Self, right, peeks around assistant coach Doc Sadler during practice for a second-round game in the NCAA basketball tournament at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, March 21, 2013. Kansas is scheduled to play Western Kentucky on Friday.

Part IV: Former KU staff member, Doc Sadler

“I mean, he’s the most unbelievable friend. Everybody knows about his coaching. They get that. But to have the ability to get the best out of people around him is what separates him from a lot of people.” — Doc Sadler

From left, men's basketball dance judges Danny Manning, Bill Self and Aaron Miles crack jokes while giving scores to members of the men's basketball team skits during Late Night at Allen Fieldhouse on Oct. 13, 2006.

From left, men's basketball dance judges Danny Manning, Bill Self and Aaron Miles crack jokes while giving scores to members of the men's basketball team skits during Late Night at Allen Fieldhouse on Oct. 13, 2006. by thad-allender

Part V: KU legend/former Self assistant coach, Danny Manning

“The things that he’s done at the University of Kansas, basketball-wise, as well as with his contribution to the community and the area in general, make me extremely proud to be an alum, not only of the school but also of the program.” — Danny Manning

Broadcaster Bob Davis laughs next to Greg Gurley during a video commemorating Davis' 37-year during halftime, Saturday, March 5, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Broadcaster Bob Davis laughs next to Greg Gurley during a video commemorating Davis' 37-year during halftime, Saturday, March 5, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

Part VI: Longtime Voice of the Jayhawks, Bob Davis

“He’s the whole package. He’s a great game coach and a tremendous recruiter. The thing he does that’s different is that Bill is such a people person. He remembers everybody’s name and remembers things about them.” — Bob Davis

Kansas guard Tyshawn Taylor and KU coach Bill Self have some words during the first half of Monday's game against Baylor.

Kansas guard Tyshawn Taylor and KU coach Bill Self have some words during the first half of Monday's game against Baylor. by Richard Gwin

Part VII: 2011-12 national runner-up, Tyshawn Taylor

“I haven’t been with him for four or five years, but he’s still with me. I’m 27 and he’s the most influential male in my life, just because of the things he said to me that stuck with me.” — Tyshawn Taylor

Kansas basketball players huddle around Roger Morningstar as he gives out the Christmas lists of local families in need so the players can shop for the families at Wal-Mart, 3300 Iowa Street, on Wednesday evening.

Kansas basketball players huddle around Roger Morningstar as he gives out the Christmas lists of local families in need so the players can shop for the families at Wal-Mart, 3300 Iowa Street, on Wednesday evening. by John Young

Part VIII: Former Jayhawk player and parent, Roger Morningstar

“He can coach. He can recruit. He can relate to kids better than anybody I’ve seen. And he doesn’t motivate through all the phony grabbing of sayings from Civil War and from Patton and all that stuff. He has a way of putting everything in the context of the present and letting it motivate the kids." — Roger Morningstar

Kansas University men’s basketball coach Bill Self, left, discusses KU’s selection to represent the United States in the 2015 World University Games, Tuesday, June 17, 2014, at KU. Joining Self at the news conference were KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger, center, and Craig Jonas, the deputy head of the USA delegation for the Games.

Kansas University men’s basketball coach Bill Self, left, discusses KU’s selection to represent the United States in the 2015 World University Games, Tuesday, June 17, 2014, at KU. Joining Self at the news conference were KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger, center, and Craig Jonas, the deputy head of the USA delegation for the Games. by Mike Yoder

Part IX: KU athletic director, Sheahon Zenger

“I can give you chapter and verse of all the things he’s accomplished, as everyone else can. And that’s why he’s in the Hall of Fame. But to me, what makes him a Hall of Famer is he’s one of the most authentic people I know. He’s humble, self-deprecating, what you see is what you get, and that’s refreshing. He’s a celebrity that doesn’t act like it.” — Sheahon Zenger

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self, right, and his father, Bill Self Sr., enjoy some time together in the summer of 2016 at the family's condo in Florida.

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self, right, and his father, Bill Self Sr., enjoy some time together in the summer of 2016 at the family's condo in Florida. by Contributed photo

Part X: Bill Self’s father, Bill Self, Sr.

“I couldn’t possibly name all the great things people have had to say about him, but if I had to pick one that stood out it would be how people appreciate the relationship with his players.” — Bill Self Sr.

Comments

Craig Carson 2 months, 2 weeks ago

what Self has done at KU has been phenomenal...His run at KU is better than Roys was..obviously KU fans wish his run of NC and FF was as good as Roys has been while at UNC..but hopefully he has another 10 years of coaching in him and can add another NC and 2-3 more FFs to his resume before he hangs it up

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