Imagine for a moment that Stephen Curry hadn't picked up his dribble. Imagine if he had risen up towards the rafters of Ford Field. Imagine that Brandon Rush, guarding Curry perfectly, had jumped merely a micro second too late as Curry released the ball from the top of his jump. Imagine, if you will, that the ball, like seemingly every other shot Curry fired in the 2008 NCAA Tournament, went in. Davidson’s fans, a number that seemingly filled the cavernous Ford Field at numbers 25 fold their usual base, go crazy, and the only thing stopping them from storming the floor is the fact that the court is 5 feet above the ground. The celebration caravans itself all the way to San Antonio.
The Jayhawks shake their opponents hands and drop their heads as they leave the court. Bill Self can sense the disappointment in the Kansas fans. After loosing to a 10 seed with an enrollment that wouldn’t fill some of KU’s auditoriums, Self knows that the fans would rather sling rock chalks than sing them.
No one’s head hangs lower than Bill Self’s as he steps down off the court, knowing the final straw between him and Lawrence, Kansas has been broken.
Some say that the drive between Lawrence, Kansas and Stillwater, Oklahoma is a boring ride. Bill Self will be taking that boring drive very soon. And no drive is unbearable when there is a minimum of 40 million dollars at the other end of the road.
So say that Kansas didn’t win the national championship as they did. Say the events transpired differently. No on in their right mind would believe that Self would stay in Lawrence for another shot at failure. Certainly not when there is limitless money and job security is available at his alma-mater a position he has called dream job.
The only thing Bill Self owed Kansas was a national title. It was a great move for everyone involved in the KU program. Now that Self’s goal was attained he can go on to another one of his goals, being the head coach at Oklahoma State.
Kansas will make a push. They will offer him an exorbitant amount of money over as long as he wants. Oklahoma State will take that figure and add millions. It’s a bidding war Kansas can’t, and shouldn’t try to win. And though Self knows that the Cowboy’s job is going to be a lot tougher than Kansas, the money, and the fact that he can fulfill a lifetime dream will put coach Self on the road to Stillwater as soon as the celebration in Lawrence is done.