Archive for Tuesday, March 23, 2010

KU coach Self in no hurry to watch tape of loss

Kansas head coach Bill Self speakers with media members outside the locker room following the Jayhawks' 69-67 loss to Northern Iowa, Saturday, March 20, 2010 at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City.

Kansas head coach Bill Self speakers with media members outside the locker room following the Jayhawks' 69-67 loss to Northern Iowa, Saturday, March 20, 2010 at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City.

March 23, 2010

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KU basketball dealt a blow in second round of tourney

The victim of a massive upset over the weekend, the Kansas University men's basketball team was in low spirits post-game. Enlarge video

Bill Self spent the Monday lunch hour in his Allen Fieldhouse basketball office, speaking with his secretary, shuffling some papers in and around his desk, sneaking a peek at the Phillies-Yankees game on ESPN-TV, chatting with a Jayhawk player or two and conducting an interview with a Journal-World reporter.

Business as usual for the multi-tasker, who was back at work two days after Kansas University’s second-round NCAA Tournament loss to Northern Iowa in Oklahoma City.

“No,” KU coach Self said, asked if he’d yet watched tape of the Jayhawks’ 69-67 setback. It is customary for Self — and many other coaches — to be in no hurry to rehash the final loss of a campaign, even one as successful as the Jayhawks’ 33-3 season.

“I don’t care about anything to do with the first game because we won that game and ended up playing very well in the second half of that game,” Self said of KU’s 90-74 first-round victory over Lehigh in Ford Center. He was responding to a question about KU’s overall play Thursday/Saturday in Okie City.

“The only thing I care about is how it ended, and it ended with one game. Basketball is such a great game. It is so exciting, that you play so well the vast majority of the season and raise the level of expectations so high that when it does end the way it did, it probably is a bigger disappointment than it would have been if we were just another good team.

“To go 33-3 is a dream season,” Self added. “But from my perspective, in order for it to be a great year, you have to play well in the tournament. We obviously didn’t do that. It was a very, very good year in which our guys played at a high level the vast majority of it. I would have never dreamed our record would have been this good or we’d dominate the league in the fashion we did (15-1 in regular season and 3-0 in postseason tourney), but it’s very disappointing it came to a stop, which happens this time of year.”

Self was asked if he was disappointed in the take of some pundits who questioned the character of the team, some saying the Jayhawks “got what they deserved” because of the preseason fight with the football team and some other issues.

He said he had not yet read any of the critiques.

“Whenever things end in a negative way, which they did, it doesn’t make any difference what it is, you will always have people say certain things or even believe certain things that this is the reason this happened. If you really follow athletics, did Indianapolis (Colts) get what they deserved by New Orleans winning that (Super Bowl) game? I don’t look at it that way. I think in a one-shot deal, upsets do occur. Though this was an upset, it was not a major, major upset. Northern Iowa is very good, very sound, very well coached, but you always look back and everybody will have an opinion on what went wrong. Look at that one game, what went wrong more than anything else is they played better than us.”

Of the season, Self noted: “The kids played hard. I never dreamed we’d play this well together with this many players that all had their own ideas of what they need to do and how they’ve improved to the point that changed their own expectations and for the most part remained unselfish. We had great leadership. We won a lot, still yet it was a big-time disappointment over the weekend.”

Here’s a quick Q and A session with Self. ...

Q — When will you learn whether Xavier Henry and Cole Aldrich will enter the NBA Draft or return to school (both are expected to leave)?

A — “I will meet with everybody at some point, whether this week or next. We do that every year when the season is over. I know we have prepared like those guys ... there’s a great chance those guys won’t be back. If they do make that decision, it certainly will not come as a surprise to us. They deserve the right to get to their families and think about it before any public announcement is made. They may be close in that area. At this time we have not spoken about it. I hope the people, the media respect the fact you’ll know something as soon as I do, but until they have a chance to get comfortable with it. It may be sooner rather than later. To me we’re definitely going on their time frame.”

Q — Who will replace Brett Ballard as director of basketball operations?

A — “We’ll wait and evaluate until all the dust settles with all the potential movement going on with jobs (around country). I won’t make any decision on any job until I have a clear understanding on exactly what our situation is here because potentially there’s more than one opening. You certainly try to get the greatest expertise in as many areas as possible.”

Q — Could any of your assistants land head coaching jobs?

A — “I hope so. I’d love to see Joe (Dooley), Kurtis (Townsend), Danny (Manning), even though I don’t think Danny will consider looking, considering it’s Evan’s senior year,” he said. Manning’s son, Evan, is a junior in high school. “I’d like to see Barry (Hinson) get a job. I’d like to see Kyle (Keller) get a job. We have guys who would be worthy candidates for some of the positions that would be open (around country). It’s not like they are the only ones going for those jobs, where competition is so tough. In this business, timing is so much of it.”

Q — What is ahead for the team? And do any players need surgery to repair injuries sustained this season?

A — “We are going to give everybody off this week. I don’t want anybody to have anything to do with basketball this week. If they want to get in the weight room, get in the weight room but not anything more than that. I don’t think we have injuries that need to be repaired surgically. But we are nicked up. We were really fortunate to go through the majority of the season without any major injuries, but I do believe our bodies are tired. We’ll use the time the next few weeks to let bodies mend a bit.”

Q — How many players will you sign in recruiting in April?

A — “We are looking for at least one more (player).”

Comments

cato_the_elder 5 years, 1 month ago

Coach, you've had a great season and we're behind you all the way. A kid takes a shot that any coach would have murdered him for taking, makes it, and our season's over. So what? We deeply share your disappointment, but we'll move on and look forward to our next season of KU basketball - and could not be prouder to have you as our coach.

Robert Rauktis 5 years, 1 month ago

The retrospectoscope is 20/20. Even clearer for fans and lawyers. But that's why they are what they are...perfect.

killjoy 5 years, 1 month ago

all for nothing. 33 wins. all for nothing.

a total lack of preparation against a lessor opponent. a total lack of leadership.

failure to motivate.

failure to adapt

bottom line: failure

newmedia 5 years, 1 month ago

I'd burn the darn thing. What's to be gained? If the pain of losing wasn't enough to motivate the kids you would have to question their "want to". Good luck with recruiting coach, KU is very, very lucky to have you and hope you can guide the Jayhawks for as long as you like, (and then maybe longer!). Rock Chalk

Mel Briscoe 5 years, 1 month ago

great job this season, coach self! thanks for the 2K wins, the big 12 title and many wonderful moments. looking forward to next season. take care and god bless. :)

Rich Noever 5 years, 1 month ago

I was not shocked by the loss to UNI. I never felt that KU was the best team in the country this year. As much as i dislike Kentucky with their cheating coach and classless fans, I felt they had the best team for most of the year. As to whether they can win it all depends on their maturity. Coach Self probably got out coached in the last game but I am not ready to throw him under the bus as some would do. You can't win them all.

CreatureComforts 5 years, 1 month ago

I can give a quick wrap-up for him: KU sucked, NIU rocked, season over.

beawolf 5 years, 1 month ago

I wouldn't say HCBS was out coached, but I am concerned about his ability to motivate this team. This was not unexpected. Too many times this year the team would come out flat against lesser opponents and then use their superior skills to make a great run and eventually win. To me, this is the coaches fault. I wonder if he tried to hard to be a players coach rather than lay down the law regarding consistent performances and use the wealth of talent he had on the bench when players did not meet expectations. I still think he is one of the best coaches in the country but his history in the NCAA's is hit or miss. 2 Elite 8's and a National Championship is impressive, but first or early round losses to Bucknell, Bradley and Northern Iowa make you scratch your head. It seems the higher the expectations the harder the team falls. All in all a fun season, but it should have lasted longer.

Gregory Newman 5 years, 1 month ago

Wasn't out coached over coached. Just a fast team that has not been allowed to play athletically. Junk that switchen defense. guards need to dribble drive and shoot mid-range jumpers 11-14. that opens up for the bigs. take the bit out their mouths and cut the reigns and let the ponies roll the fastest group of guards in the country on a leach AMAZING. This is not the 1950's

Scruggsy 5 years, 1 month ago

Re: the assistant coach situation:

Could we see the return of Billy Clyde???

volunteer 5 years, 1 month ago

I am in no hurry to listen to a tape of the players' comments after the game. On the radio I heard the "captain of the All-American Academic team" say it would have been more easier to win if they had not been down by so many at halftime.

More easier. Academic All-American.

gogoplata 5 years, 1 month ago

6 Conference championships in a row and 2008 National Champions. Bill has nothing to hang his head about. It was a good season. It is significant that people are so upset in a season where we went 15-1 to win the conference and won the conference tournament. Talk about high expectations. I do think they should be high because we have a very good coach. But give the guy a break. I agree that it sucks we lost but I doubt Bill has won his last National Championship.

7texdude 5 years, 1 month ago

Billy Clyde will get a head coaching job in Texas - at UH, maybe SMU or a long shot at TCU. If not, he will wait another year and get a head job then.

ozfan 5 years, 1 month ago

"Too many times this year the team would come out flat against lesser opponents and then use their superior skills to make a great run and eventually win. To me, this is the coaches fault."

Ditto.

ozfan 5 years, 1 month ago

"a total lack of preparation against a lessor opponent. a total lack of leadership.

failure to motivate.

failure to adapt

bottom line: failure"

Well put.

ozfan 5 years, 1 month ago

"A kid takes a shot that any coach would have murdered him for taking, makes it, and our season's over. "

A #1 seed thinks it is enough to show up for a game, and our season's over.

jonas_opines 5 years, 1 month ago

Funny thing about seasons ending is that they start up again. The naval-gazing is approaching self-mutilation.

Larry Bauerle Jr. 5 years, 1 month ago

Coaching, one of the rare jobs that apparently is so easy to evaluate that someone who has never done it, or probably played the game, or possibly left parents' basement, can tell how it should be done. I'm sure Coach Self will lose sleep over the comments seen here. His record speaks for itself. To maintain excellence over the amount of time he has is amazing.

BruceWayne 5 years, 1 month ago

what hurts the most is that Bob Knight now appears to be a genius..."if I were coach self, I wouldn't start Sherron Collins in the second half."

Gym 5 years, 1 month ago

Coach, I thought your job was to make men out of boys, not crybabies' that lay on the floor and cry!

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