Print and Go Back ESPN.com: College Basketball Nation [Print without images]

Friday, June 24, 2011
Bill Self looks on the bright side

By Diamond Leung

Kansas has retooled its roster following the departures of the Morris twins along with Josh Selby, and coach Bill Self has said he doesn't expect the program to take a step backward. His optimism carried over to draft night, as he was in New Jersey watching more of his Jayhawks go pro.

Though Self has now lost four lottery picks over the past two offseasons, he said he was glad to see the players go, especially after Markieff Morris and Marcus Morris were drafted back-to-back last night as he was alongside them in the green room.

"It doesn't feel great knowing what our team could potentially be if these guys returned, but it was time for all four of them to go," Self said. "I'm happy for all of them.

"I'm ecstatic and to me it sends a strong message, even though they weren't the first pick in the draft, but still getting picked in the lottery. I think that does speak volumes of the program and how you do things."

Self was happy also for Selby, who slipped in the draft and wasn't selected until the second round at 49th overall by Memphis. But Self thinks the Grizzlies might have gotten a steal there after a roller coaster freshman season.

"So much of being picked in the second round is just ending up at the right place, and there's some thinking on their part that they got a first-round talent, which he is," Self said. "He's a first-round talent that fell to the second round because he was hurt and suspended and all those things were out of his control. Memphis may have been one of the winners of the draft because they got a first-round pick."