Fans who want to see Kansas and Missouri meet again in men’s basketball will someday get their wish.
That’s the belief of KU coach Bill Self, who offered a prediction regarding the Border War during a summertime meeting with media Tuesday afternoon at Allen Fieldhouse. The press session was set up to discuss the Jayhawks’ upcoming four-game exhibition tour of Italy, which, of course, does not include any games versus Mizzou.
“I’m sure there will be a time where Kansas and Missouri play again. I don’t know when that time will be,” Self said, asked by a media member for his “latest” position on the KU-MU matter.
“People seem to think it’s up to me to make that call. I mean, we have an athletic director. We have a chancellor. We have other people that are involved with that.
“I do think that I caught the majority of the attention initially when I said, ‘They left us. We don’t have to play them. I was probably the only one quoted with what everybody else thought.”
The Tigers left the Big 12 for the SEC in July of 2012, ending annual games between the schools.
“Who knows what will happen?” Self added. “I certainly don’t have any ill feelings toward our bordering state or school at all. But I’m not interested in doing what’s best for Missouri. That doesn’t interest me at all, just like they are not interested in doing what’s best for Kansas. I’m interested in doing what’s best for us. Certainly I think my athletic director and my new chancellor, I’m sure they feel the same way. If it’s best for us to play them, then I’m sure we’ll play. That will be a decision by more than just me.”
KU-MU has been in the news of late, since former Missouri chancellor R. Bowen Loftin told AL.com that KU’s Self is the reason why there hasn’t been a return to any Border War games since Mizzou left the Big 12.
Loftin said while he was still chancellor he met with KU chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little and there was “a lucrative offer on the table for the Border War to restart in Arrowhead Stadium.” However, he said Self “made it clear this was not going to happen.” Loftin also mentioned Self’s “ego” as perhaps getting in the way of a return to competition.
“If you are talking about the ex-chancellor (who) brought it up, I’m not saying what they said isn’t true, but I’m shocked he would think I was involved in a football negotiating deal to try to play a game in Arrowhead,” Self said. “He may have got me confused with the football coach, I don’t know.”
“I still feel the same way that I have (about KU and MU scheduling games),” he said. “Nothing has changed in my regard.”