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Looking back: 10 years ago this week, Bill Self was hired at KU

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Sunday was the 10-year anniversary of Kansas coach Bill Self's introductory press conference to become the men's basketball coach at Kansas University: April 21, 2003.

Let's take a look back at the archives from that day.

Kansas University interim athletic director Drue Jennings, left, looks on as KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway, second from right, greets Illinois basketball coach Bill Self, center, who arrived with his family, including daughter Lauren, right, at Lawrence Municipal Airport. Though Hemenway and Jennings declined comment on
the matter Sunday when Self arrived, a news conference has been scheduled today to introduce Self as the next Kansas men's basketball coach.

Kansas University interim athletic director Drue Jennings, left, looks on as KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway, second from right, greets Illinois basketball coach Bill Self, center, who arrived with his family, including daughter Lauren, right, at Lawrence Municipal Airport. Though Hemenway and Jennings declined comment on the matter Sunday when Self arrived, a news conference has been scheduled today to introduce Self as the next Kansas men's basketball coach. by AP Photo

Gary Bedore's main story from the press conference reads like you might expect ... with plenty of talk about how Self was committed to KU and believed it was a "career-ending job."

Here's Self's quote from that day (remember, concern was that Self might want to coach at his alma mater, Oklahoma State, when Eddie Sutton retired):

"My future is not in Stillwater. It is in Lawrence. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I think contractually there'll probably be a couple of things in there to make sure that couldn't happen. But I can tell you right now that (job talk) is over."

Also interesting: Self's first contract was $1.1 million a year for five years, which is a far cry from the 10-year, $53-million extension he signed with KU last September (the $53 million figure is based on the assumption he fulfills the contract to the end).

Newly appointed Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self, left, is congratulated by announcer Max Falkenstein after a news conference Monday at Hadl Auditorium.

Newly appointed Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self, left, is congratulated by announcer Max Falkenstein after a news conference Monday at Hadl Auditorium. by Thad Allender/Journal-World Photo

• Here's the transcript of Self's introductory press conference.

This was an interesting comment from Chancellor Robert Hemenway in the introduction while presenting Self with the head coach's chair:

"We'd be pretty glad if you'd just keep it for the next 25 years or so."

Self is 40 percent of the way to that lofty goal.

Lawrence attorney Wint Winter Jr. seemed to sum up the fan reaction pretty well with this quote:

"It's like we fell out of a 10th-story window and we just landed in a vat of tapioca."

Greeted by an empty desk and blank walls, Bill Self opens a piece of mail in his new office. Self, who was hired as Kansas University's new men's basketball coach, moved Monday into Roy Williams' old office.

Greeted by an empty desk and blank walls, Bill Self opens a piece of mail in his new office. Self, who was hired as Kansas University's new men's basketball coach, moved Monday into Roy Williams' old office. by Thad Allender/Journal-World Photo

• Then-Kansas State coach Jim Woolridge had some nice things to say about Self immediately after the hire.

Both are Oklahoma natives.

"People really take to him," Woolridge said. "He's an outstanding coach, an outstanding recruiter. People really will be pleased with Bill Self. He obviously will be different than coach Williams, but I know Bill's teams will play hard and be fundamentally sound and play great defense. He didn't get where he is today because he's not a great coach."

The KU players at the time seemed happy with the selection of Self as the new head coach.

KU sophomores Keith Langford, foreground, and Aaron Miles, background left, laugh at a comment by new men's basketball coach Bill Self during a news conference. Self, the former University of Illinois head coach, was announced as the new KU head coach Monday in Hadl Auditorium.

KU sophomores Keith Langford, foreground, and Aaron Miles, background left, laugh at a comment by new men's basketball coach Bill Self during a news conference. Self, the former University of Illinois head coach, was announced as the new KU head coach Monday in Hadl Auditorium. by Mike Yoder/Journal-World Photo

Then-KU center Jeff Graves, though, might have underestimated Self's tough style a little bit with this funny quote:

"With Coach Williams, I thought I was in trouble every time I looked at him. Coach Self is a laid-back guy. I think we'll be a lot closer."

It's interesting to read back to the recruits' reaction to Self's hiring in this story from Drew Hartsock:

At the time, David Padgett, Omar Wilkes, Jeremy Case and J.R. Giddens were the four KU signees.

None of them ended up having an extended impact in KU's rotation. Padgett, Wilkes and Giddens all transferred, while Case averaged just 4.9 minutes and 1.8 points per game over his five-year KU career.

At the time, KU also was in on unsigned recruit Charlie Villanueva, who later committed to UConn.

And finally, it appears young Tyler already was photogenic from looking at these pictures (the second one almost could be considered a photobomb).

The Self family, clockwise from upper left, Lauren, 12, Cindy (holding flowers) and Tyler, 9, greet passersby after a news conference in which Bill Self was appointed the new KU men's basketball coach.

The Self family, clockwise from upper left, Lauren, 12, Cindy (holding flowers) and Tyler, 9, greet passersby after a news conference in which Bill Self was appointed the new KU men's basketball coach. by Thad Allender/Journal-World Photo

Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self, left, speaks to his wife, Cindy, at Hadl Auditorium following last Monday's news conference to introduce him. Self was hired after a weeklong search by the KU athletic department.

Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self, left, speaks to his wife, Cindy, at Hadl Auditorium following last Monday's news conference to introduce him. Self was hired after a weeklong search by the KU athletic department. by Mike Yoder/Journal-World Photo

Just to compare, here's Tyler now:

Kansas guard Tyler Self is congratulated by his teammates after a bucket against Colorado during the second half on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Tyler Self is congratulated by his teammates after a bucket against Colorado during the second half on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

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