Bill Self: Big 12 Weekly Teleconference

Coach Self discusses overall state of the team, Simien's rebounding, the upcoming KState game and "The Streak". More inside!

On the month of February:
"They are all important and they all add up the same. I have always said you want to be playing your best ball going into the month of February. The adrenaline and intensity always picks up once you get closer to the end. Especially for team in contention. It is a great time for teams to be playing their best. It gives you momentum going into the postseason. It is imperative to play good all of the time. I think February is the key month."

On his team:
"We have been pretty good since Christmas. We made a couple of wins look interesting. We also made a win into a loss against Richmond. They came in and beat us when we did a lot of things wrong in the last couple of minutes. We played well yesterday against Colorado. We have gotten better. I do feel good about our team moving in the right direction. We have only been home one or two games since the Michigan State game, the second game of the season. Yesterday was the first sign of Wayne Simien being healthy in a long while. He said it was the best he has felt all year. When he feels good you can see what he does. Hopefully we can retain our health which adds to our athletic ability and energy."

On Wayne Simien:
"He is rebounding the ball of late but his groin has not allowed him to be as explosive as he was yesterday. That was definitely a big bonus yesterday, not only for the team but for him personally. It is a struggle to play everyday in practice when you know you don't feel your best and your body can't do what your brain tells it to do. Hopefully it is at the point where it can."

On Kansas State:
"There is a streak. These players here have been a part of two of them. This staff has been a part of zero of them. Except for Danny (Manning) -- he may have won there a couple of times if the building was open then. I think media and fans make a bigger deal about it then what the players and coaches do. The streak will be irrelevant once they throw the ball up. It will be guys playing against guys. Based on the way they played us last time -- even being shorthanded -- we know we have to be good. K-State's talent level has been upgraded. Since Jim (Wooldridge) has been there this is the most talented team they have had."

On assistant coach Tim Jankovich:
"This is his scout. He will spend a lot of time breaking down K-State. He wanted this one because of ties there. I think playing K-State here was fine for him. I am sure going back to Manhattan with all the success he experienced with the teams he played on, I am sure it will be a thrill for him to go back. It will be different circumstances, but he still has a ton of respect and love for the place he graduated from."

On Wayne Morgan's takeover at ISU compared to his own at Kansas:
"His whirlwind was different because of different circumstances. He didn't have to move. Mine has been the move and everything. His has been different in other areas. He went from being a head coach to an assistant and back to a head coach. I would assume both moves have been unique and both have been whirlwinds. I really believe he and his staff have done a good. They have very good personnel. I love their team from the little I have seen. I think they have very good young players. They have some size and athletic ability. He has done a great job of coaching them as evidenced by their good start."

On what he did when he took the KU program over:
"I don't know if you can name one thing. One of the things was to get to the players. Not in a way where you are buddy-buddy with them. In a way where they feel comfortable with you and can trust you as a person. We are taking over a healthy program so we want to try and continue a lot of things other people have been doing. We didn't have to come in and make wholesale changes. We did have to put our own stamp on the program. Through the generosity of some people we have been able to do that in some regard. I think there are so many great traditions and history that you don't want to change a ton. I think you might want to tweak it to fit your personality."

On the streak over Kansas State:
"I think we have to make sure our players understand it could be a source of motivation. Obviously both teams should be sky-high for each other. There is a pride factor in place. There is also an additional carrot out there, this team could be the one that ends it. I have lost 18 consecutive, so I know there are different ways of motivating players. From our standpoint we do not see it as a game Kansas should win. I see it as a game Kansas should have a chance to win if we go play well. If we don't play well then we will go home sad."


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