Coach Self Live Chat

Coach Self

Live Chat with Coach Self

Head Coach Bill Self was online Monday, January 18th at 2:00 PM to answer questions from Jayhawk fans.

The chat transcript is below.

Rock Chalk!

ku-chat-icon-75x75.gif spacer.gif Moderator: Good afternoon! Thanks for joining us today. Coach Self will be taking questions for the next half hour or so. Let’s get started!
James, Olathe KS: Coach, why does it seem that the team has become one dimensional and are settling for 3 point shots and seem to have gone away from playing inside out and driving the ball to the basket?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I don’t know if the team has become one-dimensional as much as defenses the last two games have played us to take away the inside and definitely dared us to shoot the basketball. So I still think we’re an inside-out team first, but Nebraska put three guys around our big guys and Texas Tech did as well, so in order to open it up we’re going to have to be able to shoot the ball from the perimeter.
Jesse, Austin, TX: Coach I know the break between semesters is a time where you can practice much more than when class is in session. Do you think the extra practice session may have contributed to the team coming out so flat against Cornell/Tennessee?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: No, I don’t think the extra practice sessions contributed at all to our team coming out flat against Cornell and Tennessee. I’m not sure we came out that flat against Cornell, I think Cornell really has a good basketball team. I think we missed shots against Cornell, but I thought we tried pretty hard. Against Tennessee we were a flat team. But I don’t think the extra practice sessions had anything to do with that. Plus, these guys are young and they really don’t have that much else to do during the break other than come to the gym.
Melissa (Seattle): If you weren’t coaching basketball, what profession would you be in?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: If I wasn’t coaching basketball, I’d probably be in some form of sales. I don’t know what line that would be, but I do think what we do is sell on a daily basis–either you’re selling your players, selling a recruit or selling the media or the fan base, so I’d say my best chance would probably be in sales.
Chase G. (Ames, Iowa): Coach Self I have come to some camps in the summer and learned a lot. Do you ever make your team do drills during the season or do you just practice running plays?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: We make our team do drills every day in practice. We don’t just practice running plays. As a matter of fact, we probably spend less time running plays compared to learning how to play. In practice today we went for 90 minutes and we probably spent 15 minutes working on running plays and the rest of the time was spent working on HOW to play, doing a lot of breakdown drills and things like that.
Bill M. (Wichita): What does the team need to improve on the most now that we are in Big 12 play?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I think what our team needs to do now more than anything else is attack the ball better. I don’t think we attack the ball like some teams do. I think our skill-set is very tough to match up with, but not only do you need skills, you need guys who go after every ball with two hands and attack the ball. That is something I think we can get a lot better at.
John J. (Corona, CA): Elijah…this kid is awesome. Any chances that he will get more playing time…he looks like a good shooter and looks to be a good playmaker for the big guys…any more playing time coming soon?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I agree. Elijah is a great kid and he is going to be a very, very good player here. I do think there is a good chance that he can play more as the season progresses. He’s had some good practices, but he’s still a freshmen and he’s been a little bit inconsistent. But I do think he is a very good player and will continue to get better and better.
Darnell (Jackson, Miss): You pressed against Nebraska more than I have seen all year from this team. What made you decide to change your defense and how did you know your team would be able to execute after not doing it most of the season so far?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: Against Nebraska we only pressed about three possessions, and we pressed against Texas Tech a little too. But I’m not going to be a pressing coach where that is our trademark. If we can’t guard in the quarter court what makes us think that we can extend and guard in the full court? We are a good defensive team with a chance to become great. All the best teams late in the season are usually teams that pressure and not press a lot. If you’re philosophy is not to give up easy baskets, the one thing about pressing is whenever you trap the ball you’re always playing 4-on-3 or 3-on-2 behind it. I’m not huge on pressing unless it’s catch-up defense.
Steve (Hays, KS): What changes, if any, are you working with the team on defense?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: We’re not really changing anything we do with our team on defense. What we’re trying to do is get better at what we do. What we do works. I think we may be leading the country or second in the country in field goal percentage defense, we’re plus-eight rebounding, we’re averaging nine steals a game, so there’s a lot of good things that we’re doing defensively but we’re not a great defensive team yet. I do believe we can get there, we just have to do what we do better.
Matt (Chicago): What do you do before games, what is your pregame ritual? Do you have any superstitions?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I am not a real superstitious person, but I do have a ritual. On game days I do the same thing every time–from wearing the same type of clothes to eating the same type of food to working out at the same time, maybe even laying down to take a thirty-minute nap–there are certain things that I like to do on game days. We’ve been relatively successful, especially at home, so I don’t like to do anything to mess that up.
Abby (Lincoln): What is the hardest part about coaching a group of such talented guys?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I’d say the hardest thing about coaching a group of talented guys is that everybody really deserves an opportunity, but not everybody always gets one. That’s the nature of the business. I wish we could play twelve guys all equal minutes, but that’s not the way it goes. You play the guys that give you the best chance and they deserve to be out there the majority of the minutes. That’s the one thing that is the most difficult–getting guys to understand that and know that their time is coming if they keep working hard.
John (Oklahoma City): Do you and your staff buy into the advanced statistical analyses that have proven to be successful in the NBA? If so, what sorts of advanced statistics do you use?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: We actually do buy into the advanced statistical analyses that many teams in the NBA do. We know where a player hits his shots, we know if he drives it right, we know what percentage of times he goes left, what percentage of shots are inside the arc and outside the lane, we know if he is a right foot pivot or a left foot pivot, we know a lot of things like that. We do and can use that to our advantage. However, too much information for our players is not good because that will get them thinking instead of reacting, but we try to do as much as we can.
Franklin (Kansas City MO): What is your favorite TV show outside of sports programming?
self-chat-icon.jpg spacer.gif Coach Self: I don’t watch a lot of TV. But I was a big fan of Monk for a while and now I’m a fan of House. So those two are the shows that I watch, I don’t watch any reality shows or anything like that. Those two and Law & Order, you know you can always find that on TV.
ku-chat-icon-75x75.gif spacer.gif Moderator: That’s all the time Coach has today. Thanks to everyone who joined and submitted questions. Check later this week for the next live chat date and time. Rock Chalk!