Exclusive @jaybate 1.0 Interview With Coach Self

  • I was able to obtain a recent transcript of an interview done just yesterday with Coach Self, conducted by our own @jaybate-1.0. Warning. Some of the contents may be disturbing.

    Q: Coach Self, thanks for speaking with me.

    A: Who are you again?

    Q: I’m @jaybate_1.0, with kubuckets.com.

    A: I don’t know what that means. Is that your real name?

    Q: Is that your real hair?

    A: Look, I’ve heard of you, but a little background might help.

    Q: Well, I think most KU fans would agree that I’m the most knowledgeable person on KU hoops; kind of a Dalai Lama sort of figure. I rule with wisdom.

    A: Then we’re a lot alike, you and I.

    Q: Let’s get moving here. Is the word “flexibility” in your dictionary?

    A: You’d have to ask Cindy.

    Q: What I mean coach, is why is it that you are so inflexible with your schemes?

    A: My schemes have won me a lot of games. I’ve got 10 rings on my fingers, and they all say “Big 12 champs”.

    Q: Coach, don’t you have 11 rings? I mean, where’s the other one?

    A: Again, you’d have to ask Cindy. One for bone, ya know.

    Q: Uh, anyway, Conner Frankamp told me you hate three point shooters. Your reply?

    A: I’m sure he did. Little bastard. He took our playbook and gave it to Mr. Slime Ball in Koch town. That @Crimsonorblue22 is right … “slime ball.” Did you know Marshall really likes the Kochs? Or so I’ve heard. Well, to your question, I like three pointers that go in the basket.

    Q: How can they go in the basket if your players aren’t permitted to shoot them?

    A: Have you been talking to Brannen? He just needs to get his butt to class, is what he needs to do. Well, the best, most reliable shot is near the basket. That’s the shot we try to get.

    Q: Coach, this season, though, the numbers were kind of undeniable, right? Like 56% at the rim.

    A: That’s a little deceiving. Take Selden and Ellis out of that, and we’re shooting like 80% at the rim. I know, I know, that’s not true. Just feels like it, doesn’t it?

    Q: So why do you play Selden so much; I mean, why does he start?

    A: That’s a good question. I’ll need to think about that.

    (five minutes pass)

    Q: Uh, coach … you done thinkin’?

    A: Uh, I promised him a chance to start. Yea, a chance. That’s all these boys get. A chance. I don’t make promises.

    Q: Coach, I didn’t say you did make promises.

    A: Yes you did. Or that’s what you meant.

    Q: Alright, let me get to the most important topic. Shoeco’s. How do they influence your recruiting?

    A: I know NOTHING!

    Q: Coach, why did you say that like Sargent Shultz?

    A: I don’t know.

    Q: We we know you are an adidas school; I want to ask you about Nik …

    A. Whoa, Whoa, WHOA! We DON’T say the “N” word around here. We say it with an “a” at the end. Nika. When you say it with an “a” at the end, it means something different. It’s part of our KU culture. It makes it funny. We can laugh about … ha, ha … see, it’s now funny.

    Q: Use it in a sentence then.

    A: You know, F*** that Nika bi***. That’s kind of in jest.

    Q: I’m shocked coach.

    A: Don’t be … get down here close to me … closer … they have microphones. We can’t say the real N word. We’ll all be out of a job.

    Q: Who has microphones, adidas?

    A. Uh-huh. They’re everywhere.

    Q: Ok, then, I’ll move on.

    Q: Coach, who’s the most important Jayhawk for next season?

    A: Easy. Me.

    Q: You?

    A: Well, yea. Who would you say?

    Q: Ok, good point. After you … who is the most important?

    A: Probably Cheick Diallo. Well, the most talented, for sure. Not sure if he’ll “get it” from the beginning. Might have to start Jamari.

    Q: Coach, Diallo hasn’t signed yet. Isn’t that a recruiting violation?

    A: Not if you’re not recording this.

    Q: What about the … (whispering) the adidas microphones?

    A: Hah, they’re not turning me in. The messes they’ve go me out of. Hell, you wouldn’t believe it. Remember Cat Barber? Let me tell you about …

    (Kurtis Townsend interrupting)

    Townsend: Coach, that’s not a topic today @jaybate-1.0. Please move on.

    A: Ok, ok. Mother freaking hen, he is. Would you like a jelly bean?

    Q: A jelly bean?

    A: Yes, a jelly bean. Here’s the bowl.

    Q: But coach, they’re all blue. And they kind of look like pills.

    A: No, no. Nice flavor. I keep them in all of my coaches meetings. Lightens the mood. I give free jelly beans to all the media members after our luncheons. Though that damn @Jesse-Newell says, “Sorry, trying to quit” all the time. He’ll eat the damn beans soon enough.

    Q: Well, let’s get to different topic. What is your position on one and dones.

    A: Don’t like 'em. I mean, I like the players. Love the players. Great kids every one of them. Don’t like the rule.

    Q: Why not?

    A: I mean, it’s not fair to the college game. These kids come in, one season, 8 or 9 months, and then bam, they’re gone. Kinda like a one night stand. Though, I’ve had couple that were well worth …

    Townsend: Coach, remember what we talked about?

    A: Right, right.

    Q. Then why do you go after them?

    A: One night stands?

    Q: No, OADs.

    A: Got to. Got to recruit the best talent.

    Q: How has that worked out for you?

    A: Look, the NCAA tournament is a potshot. It’s luck. There are lot media types that I have lunches with an pal around with all the time that will tell you that. Heck, there’s even a few Jayhawk fans that feel that way too. They know it’s luck. Great, great insight. Bad match ups. Damn committee. Put us in with Standford when they knew we had Embiid out. Then matched us up with WSU when, well, uh … they were like better than us.

    Q: Though, couldn’t you have tried to adjust your game plan to deal with both of those teams, I mean try something a little different?

    A: Like I’ve said before, that game planning stuff is crap. We play to our strengths.

    Q: What was your strength this season?

    A: Uh, uh … I said perimeter shooting before the season. Kurtis?

    Townsend: Don’t say it, coach. The narrative is different now.

    Q: But other coaches regularly change and adapt; they even do it game to game.

    A: They do?

    Q: Sure. Like Wiggins. He was a major match up advantage much of last season, why didn’t you post him up?

    A: Post him up??? A small forward? What planet are you on? Geez, get this guy. Post up a non-post player? We are talking basketball aren’t we? We play a high/low with the post players in the paint. Silly talk.

    Q: Have you watched Wiggins with Minnesota? How they spread the floor and use him there? The whole idea of maximizing his talent?

    A: That’s professional basketball. We’re not professionals, sir.

    Q: Let me ask this then … why do you hate the three point shot?

    A: Hate is a very strong word.

    Q: Love is as well, coach; you know what I mean.

    A: Look, I don’t hate the three point shot. It’s just unreliable. You’re the Fool’s Gold freak, aren’t you?

    Q: No, that’s someone else. That was @HighEliteMajor. But everything does flow from my posting tree …

    A: Well, I do regret that comment. And I do admit to the world that my comment and how I handled practices and such sent our three point shooting into the tank. I regret that. @HighEliteMajor was right …

    Townsend: COACH!

    A: … Uh, yea, right. NOT! That @HighEliteMajor is a dumb a**. Some guys think they know it all. Who does he think he is, John Wooden?

    Q: No, that’s me. I think I’m John Wooden. Wooden adapted to his talent.

    A: Whoever you are, the three point shooting stuff is not real basketball. It’s not reliable. There wasn’t even a three point stripe for most of the history of basketball. I saw the Naismith rules. Nothing about three point shooting that I saw. The father of the game.

    Q: Well, how do reconcile the fact that three Final Four teams shot over 19 threes a game, that each of those teams incorporate three point shooting as part of their offensive scheme, and that they create multiple situations to get those looks? Wisconsin and Duke shot boat loads of threes and got to the title game. MSU and Izzo have shot many more over the last two seasons than ever before. Isn’t that adapting to their talent?

    A: That’s them. We’re Kansas. We do it my way, as my buddy, @JayHawkFanToo, will surely attest. Get your nose out of there and come on up here?

    Q: Hey, where was he? I didn’t see him back there … Anyway, coach, I’m here to interview you. Why do you hate the three?

    A: Ok, but please don’t tell anyone, agreed?

    Q: Sure, agreed.

    A: Well, when I was little, my dad and I were watching an old ABA game. Well, anyway, Artis Gilmore, big guy, squared up for a three. You remember those short, shorts they wore then?

    Q; Yea …

    A: Well, Artis wasn’t quite all tucked in, you get what I’m saying?

    Q: I think so …

    A: It scared me. And it scarred me. I thought it was a little raccoon and he was keeping it in his shorts. And that he was hurting it. I figured it out a few years later, and when I asked my dad about it, he just said that Artis shouldn’t have been shooting a three anyway. He was a post player. He should have stayed there and the whole thing wouldn’t have happened. I guess I just have a phobia.

    Q: You have a phobia of … uh … raccoons?

    A: No, no. I have a phobia of three pointers. I love little raccoons. But the other is a real phobia. They bring back bad memories. Scars. A big guy should be in the paint. You win in the paint. And you won’t see any raccoons you shouldn’t see if no one shoots three pointers. No little raccoons will be hurt.

    Q: Is that why you said you “hoped to hell they wouldn’t” shoot threes?

    A: Look, it wouldn’t matter if they just played with a chip on their shoulders. The chip.

    Q: You mean like one of my boys @drgnslayr, always says, right?

    A: That guy? Doesn’t he question whether we actually coach?

    Q: That’s the guy. My protege.

    A: I really need to wrap this up. Gotta get out on the recruiting trail again. That Calipari is really a Thorn in my side, but I try to turn the other Cheick. This could be a Maker - break day …

    Townsend: Easy coach …

    Q: Sure, thanks for the time.

    A: Now remember, some of this stuff is just between us. Sure you wouldn’t like a jelly bean? Take one.

    Q: Any red ones?

    A: Kurtis, did you hear that. We have a comedian here.

    Q: Well, ok, if you insist.

    A: Perfect.

    Q: Thanks for the jelly bean … quite tasty. I do have another quick question or two - Don’t you think that 11 conference championships in a row is the most impressive accomplishment in recent college basketball history? The true measure of greatness? How can anyone question your decisions, coach?

    A: I have to go … Feed the Post, and Prosper.

    Q: Yes, Feed the Post, and Prosper.

    (All Fiction, of course … kind of. No Malice)

  • This post was so long that I was genuinely surprised to see it wasn’t jaybate who posted it. 😉

  • @HighEliteMajor HA!!! That was a great one! Very funny stuff.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Very cleaver thread… bravo!

    I wish Self would just prove me wrong and send out a well-coached team for a change… and with a chip!

  • @HighEliteMajor


  • @HighEliteMajor

    I knew his 3 point fear had to be easily explained!

  • Really funny stuff! You sounded more like Jaybate than Jaybate does!

  • @HighEliteMajor

    HOWLING! Made my day!


  • @stupidmichael

    It SCARED me it was so long!!!

  • @Hawk8086

    Now I get it…

    @HighEliteMajor IS @jaybate 1.0!!!

  • I LOL-ed hard at the “N Word” segment, haha. Good stuff. Hopefully coach is done with interviews now and is busy putting the full court blitz on Diallo. We neeeed that guy!

  • @HighEliteMajor I hope the weather is causing you to stay indoors today.

  • @RockkChalkk

    Amen to that! I caught the Nike Summit late last night on DVR. Diallo is the real deal! One of the more impressive players in that game. He is the kind of presence I want in the low post. I’m happy to give up a couple of inches of height in trade for aggressiveness, speed and strength. He’s a beast now… imagine him with some Hudy muscle?

    The one negative concerning Diallo… he won’t qualify for the summer games. So we can’t use that in our sales pitch except to say that he’ll be around players that are well-prepared for next D1 season.

    But I have to admit just how impressed I was with Ben Simmons. If he has enough talent around him I could see him carry LSU to the FF next year. How did LSU land a guy like Simmons? I hope they hammer Kentucky this year.

  • @drgnslayr Diallo: not exceptionally tall, but a 7’4" wingspan and a Kevin Young/Thomas Robinson motor! Please, please, someone hire a tattoo artist to burn a Jayhawk onto this kid’s forehead! Before Cal and K can clamp a vice grip onto his manhood.

  • @Hawk8086 said:

    You sounded more like Jaybate than Jaybate does!

    I am a weak imitation of myself! 🙂

  • @drgnslayr I saw that game as well and came to the same conclusion. Diallo is a stud. We need him.
    Oh boy do I hope Kensucky gets hammered too. Wouldnt it be even greater if they miss the NCAA’s again and get bounced in the NIT?

  • Let me ask this on Diallo – how does he help our back to the basket scoring dilemma? I have not read a positive report on that aspect of his game. In the times I have seen him on TV, I haven’t seen that skill set. I’m just kind of curious as to how he’s any different than Cliff?

    How is he going to do in a D-1 situation where teams actually play defense? Videos seem to show him dominating smaller guys.

    He needs to develop on the offensive end. We don’t have time for that. He’ll be here one season.

    It’s all we have now that we blew it on other guys that also need to develop, but actually would be here for a few seasons. He has issues “catching and scoring”? Yikes.

    Here’s what ESPN says about him. The weaknesses highlighted by his offensive issues, are what is concerning for me:


    Diallo has a terrific motor. He competes at a high level on both ends of the floor. He rebounds on both ends with two hands at rim level. He runs the floor with extra long strides where he finishes with power. Diallo simply attacks the opponent. He is capable of defending both post positions as well. Diallo is a finisher, rebounder and top notch shot blocker and defender. Call him an eraser or a rim protector, either is appropriate.


    This is where significant improvements must be made. He lacks feel on the offensive side and while he’s got major awareness as a shot blocker he’s opposite in terms of catching and scoring. His touch is fleeting. Needs one move and he’ll be a kid that can impact games. He must continue to work to develop on the offensive end of the floor including his ball handling.

    Bottom Line:

    Diallo is a high energy, finisher, rebounder and shot blocker. His defense and rebounding is what make him special. He will need to continue to work to add some offense to his game but he competes at a high level and can dominate the game defensively. He is a sure shot high major power forward with off the charts upside.

  • @HighEliteMajor due to his weakness on the offensive side i actually think he will be a TAD player. I think he made reference to this in one of his interviews at one point. Anyway, if Ellis comes back, don’t think we need Diallo to be a scorer next year in set half court offense. I’d love to see the team get back into running the floor and fast break like they did several years ago. Diallo makes that easier because when you have Mason/Graham/Selden taking the ball to the rim with their head down they just need to get it up on the glass and Diallo will be there for the put back. Its the K-Yo element to the '12 team and the McKay piece to ISU and I think can be good for 5 more buckets a game. I really think its the key to changing the often 3-4 point wins we’ve seen the past couple of years to 13-14 point wins.

    Seriously, KU used to beat the other team down the court for a layup even after a made bucket! If we’re going to embrace the OADs then we should be using these superior athletes as an advantage and i think the fast break is the best way. Going toe to toe in set offense against experienced teams makes having superior athletes less of a factor and can be recipe for an upset.

  • @RockkChalkk You are exactly right on the put backs/rebounding.

    But I hate to be pessimistic here – didn’t we say that about Cliff?

    You mentioned that you don’t think that we’d need Diallo to be a scorer if Ellis came back. But let’s just think back to the past season. We could not score in the post. That is the status quo. The only way that changes is if we add back to the basket post scoring. Ellis was subpar in Self’s system – now, a guy like Embiid? That’s different. Heck, I think it’s more likely that Diallo learns and improves a quick rate than it is that Ellis improves. I doubt Ellis could score on Diallo in practice. That body type is his nemesis.

    And I do appreciate the optimism that Diallo would be a TAD. I see his current spot in mock drafts, and I see that guys that aren’t even projected as first rounders are turning pro. The athleticism and natural tools that Diallo has is clearly that of a presumed OAD. If he would come back, it would be a shock.

    I’m just concerned about our offense, and the disaster we saw last season repeating itself. To be honest, I think Bragg offers us our best shot at improvement there.

    Someone help me be optimistic with our post scoring.

  • @HighEliteMajor Well, your one of the better basketball minds on here. If anyone should know, it would be you. I’ll add my two cents anyhow.

    All I have seen from Diallo was the Jordan game the other day. I dont recall seeing much back to the basket scoring from him but his presence was definitely noticed on both ends of the court. Imo, his team was better with him in the game. He’ll bring that to KU if he decides to.

  • @HighEliteMajor I think you just answered your own question.
    All he needs is one move.

    Surely the coaches at KU can give the kid more than just one move.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Let me start with the premise that no HS kid comes ready to play Division I basketball; some come with serious flaws that the coaching staff has to wean them off before it even starts working on improving their games. Some kids are more ready to get up to speed than others and might require a few months while others will need 2 or even 3 years before they are ready. Diallo appears to be in the group that, while not quite ready for prime time, he is not that far away form being a decent contributor, more so than other players; he had a decent game at the Nike hoops Summit and his team operated a lot better with him on the court. Simmons was in my opinion the most ready player in the game and Thon Maker a big disappointment and really not even close to being ready to play with big boys; he needs at least one more year in HS to improve his game, way too many flaws right now and not even close to where Embiid was at a comparable time…way, way too hyped for what he brings to the table at this time

  • @JayHawkFanToo @Lulufulu - I completely agree that Diallo appears ready to contribute in a number of ways. But the point about needing time to develop is my concern regarding Diallo’s back to the basket scoring.

    I watched Cliff last year at this time. He looked like he had long arms, and was athletic and physical. A beast, if there ever was one. He looked like a man. I’m just not sure I can say that Diallo looks better than him.

    And going to Cliff, the “one move” thing is what he lacked, right? Cliff had no “go to” move. In fact, that was a point of discussion here back in the first few weeks of the season. It didn’t appear that Cliff ever came up with that “one move.”

    However, every player is different. Regardless of who I (we) may compare them to, they each have their own learning curve and challenges.

    My only concern with Diallo, really, is just that one season may not be enough to meld the back to the basket scoring. And we need that now.

  • @HighEliteMajor True, we do need that now. Self’s best teams here have had that one big guy that can do all that.

  • I watched and rewatched both the McDonald’s Game and the Nike Hoops Summit. I focused on 4 kids in particular: Diallo, Zimmerman, Brown, Newman. I came away most impressed with Diallo and Brown. Diallo because of energy and put-back prowess, Brown as a kid who could handle the ball well, a la Frank Mason, but with more size, like Selden. I know that most posters here are not much impressed with Zimmerman’s comments, and perhaps a hint of family inflexibility regarding his matriculation to his year in college. That said, Zimmerman has some GAME that Bill Self could probably utilize well. The fact is, even though something like 7 of the top 15 recurits have not yet declared, those among that group still on Jayhawk radar is probably 5 or fewer. So, Self must be looking at the Thorne (sp?) kid very carefully…and must be scanning lists of possible j.c. or foreign surprises. KU MUST solidify the post position; and if Ellis should depart, O MY! At the moment, from what I have seen and heard, I feel that the threesome of Thorne, Diallo, and Brown would constitute a major coup. Then send the bigs to a Dan Manning summer camp!

  • @REHawk did you check out Ingram at all! I thought he was pretty good, 2-3 years, beef him up a lot!

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Nope. Too many unfamiliar faces and numbers in those 2 games. In the McD’s game I spent lots of time watching Carlton B. (who looks like a player who might stay in Lawrence for more than one year).

  • A lot of interesting comments.

    If we focus only on back to the basket scoring probably the only high level guy who could do that from day 1 would be Zimmerman. Just not sold on the kids will to play at the College level, comments aside I don’t see the motor that we would need from day 1. Great kid, can score in a lot of ways and is a high level passer which is also an important aspect of the H/L offense.

    I think an important aspect that has been mentioned was that Diallo made his team better when he was on the floor. I watched the Hoops Summit focusing on Ingram, Diallo, and Brown. Diallo just seemed to be wherever the ball was, as I think it was Fran who said " Diallo treats missed shots like his pass". He is a few post moves away from truly being an unstoppable force. Can he learn that as quickly as Embiid did? We won’t know until we see it.

    I think from an Effort stand point, Diallo might be able to improve the team enough to off-set any concerns about low-post scoring. He can block shots, weak-side, face to face in the post and would instantly give us a rim protector we desperately need as much as scoring. Rebounding & 50/50 balls effort he’d also stand to improve what we have. Let’s face it, we were much better defensively than 2 years ago but still not at the level past KU teams have been. Diallo is the instant upgrade to that problem. Offensively, its an unknown just like everyone else we got.

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