Kansas Jayhawks: Could Bill Self Leave KU For OKC Thunder


Could the Kansas Jayhawks be in danger of losing Bill Self?

The Oklahoma City Thunder have fired head coach Scott Brooks who had been with the team for eight seasons. He was the head coach for the entire careers to date of NBA stars Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and Serge Ibaka.

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This firing came as somewhat of a surprise as the Thunder have been a powerhouse in a very tough Western Conference in the NBA for the last five or six years. Rumors swirled that OKC’s upper management and Brooks had some differences in thinking and saw an opportunity to get rid of him when his injury-plagued squad missed the playoffs for the first time in the relocated team’s existence.

This job is obviously very desirable for coaches around the country at all levels because of the big names and the very talented that is already in place. So far, names including Chicago’s Tom Thibodeau, UConn’s Kevin Ollie, and Florida’s Billy Donavon have come up as possible hires, but what about the Kansas Jayhawks‘ Bill Self?

Self’s name has been brought up before in regards to open NBA head coaching positions in the past, but obviously nothing has come of it so far, as he has been with the Jayhawks since his days at Illinois.

The opening of the Oklahoma City job is obviously a very enticing one with the ample amount of young talent on board. Almost any coach would leap at the chance to be in the spotlight of coaching one if not two of the best players in the modern era.

Bill Self could fit very well with the Thunder in my opinion because of his outstanding résumé and coaching experience. He coached against Kevin Durant for a year while Durant was at Texas, and the two have somewhat kept in touch over the years.

If Self were indeed offered the head coaching job with OKC and he accepted, it would obviously be a huge blow to the Jayhawks.

Who knows who would replace him? Luckily we’re nowhere near that stage yet.

The downside for Self in heading to the NBA is that a lot of NBA head coaches are fired these days. In fact, it seems almost all do at one point in time. Scott Brooks is a perfect example of a successful coach being fired.

Another would be Golden State’s Mark Jackson who was fired after last NBA season where the Warriors took a huge step forward that ultimately led to what they are today under new head coach Steve Kerr.

Staying at Kansas offers Self much more job security, and already offers him the big stage and the big money that any coach wants. In my opinion, Self would foolish to leave his gig with the Jayhawks because of his success over the years that has made his job all but secure until he decides to retire. Barring any unexpected dry spell in the coming seasons.

The bottom line is that I don’t think Self would leave KU for the NBA, as he has had the chance before, but not many would turn down the chance to coach one of the most talented teams in the world. Only time will tell what will come of the situation.

Next: A Look Ahead At Next Season For KU

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