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Kansas HC Bill Self explains why he’s been thinking about next season for a month

Kansas HC Bill Self explains why he’s been thinking about next season for a month

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — It was not the typical season many are accustomed to when it comes to Kansas Jayhawks basketball.

Kansas bowed out in the Round of 32 to Gonzaga on Saturday, in a season that saw the Jayhawks suffer their most losses (11) since Bill Self arrived on campus in 2003.

It was a long season for Kansas, and it seemed to take a toll on KU head coach Bill Self.

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“For the last month, I’ve been thinking about next season, to be honest,” Self said. “Not in the moments during the game. Obviously, we had eight guys on scholarship, I mean that were healthy there late.

“Injuries are part of the game so that’s not an excuse. But we could’ve done a much better job as a staff of putting more guys out there that we could play. And that’s something that I’ve thought about for a long time.”

Kansas looked poised to compete for another Big 12 title early in the season, but injuries and a lack of depth began to plague the team.

“The thing about it is, in basketball, early on, you can play through some things. But the course of a season, there’s a grind that goes with it and bodies get run down, injuries occur, that’s all part of it. And when you don’t have as much firepower, that maybe you’ve had in past years, it certainly showed this year.”

The Jayhawks came into the year ranked number one and started out 13-1, including wins over Kentucky, UConn, and Tennessee.

Leading scorer and senior forward Kevin McCullar was in and out of the lineup in the second half of conference play after suffering a bone bruise in his knee that caused him to miss the entire postseason.

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That was followed up with a dislocated injury to Hunter Dickinson in the last game of the Big 12 regular season that forced him to miss the entire conference tournament.

The Jayhawks were able to escape with a 93-89 win over Samford in the first round, but things came to a halt against Gonzaga.

Kansas will look to regroup and get back to their winning ways for the 2024-25 season.

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