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Could Kansas' Bill Self someday coach the Oklahoma City Thunder?

I don't know when the Thunder will need a new coach. Scotty Brooks has done a phenomenal job and could be the next Jerry Sloan, for all I know. But the best bet, whenever the time come comes, be it five years or 10, is Self.
by Berry Tramel Published: March 29, 2012

The Thunder has a wildly successful coach and doesn't need a new one.

Bill Self has a highly coveted job and no reason to leave it.

But as Self approaches his second Final Four and perhaps his second NCAA championship with the Kansas Jayhawks, and the Thunder hits the home stretch as one of the four favorites for the NBA title, it's not crazy to think that some day Self indeed could come home to coach.

Not to OSU. To the Thunder.

I don't know when the Thunder will need a new coach. Scotty Brooks has done a phenomenal job and could be the next Jerry Sloan, for all I know.

And I don't know who the next coach will be. But the best bet, whenever the time comes, be it five years or 10, is Self.

The ties are too strong not to at least consider that Self might one day coach the Thunder.

Grew up in Edmond. Played at Oklahoma State, where he also coached on Eddie Sutton's staff. Was head coach at Oral Roberts and Tulsa U. Was tempted to come back to OSU four years ago, after winning the NCAA title and being offered a blank check by Mike Holder.

But there are Thunder ties, too. Self went to OSU and became lifelong friends with R.C. Buford, now the Spurs' general manager. And you know what that means; the Thunder operates out of the San Antonio manual.

Thunder GM Sam Presti came from the Spurs, an apprentice of Buford and president/coach Gregg Popovich. Of course, you could argue that means Self will be the next coach of the Spurs, and that's not thin ice, either.

But the Thunder/Self ties go beyond geography and the Spurs. Presti's fiancé once was Self's administrative assistant at KU. Presti knows all about Self.

Self long has expressed “intrigue” with the NBA, though last May he told Kansas City's 610 Sports Radio that he still sees himself “as a college guy,”

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by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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