Bernadette Gray-Little’s decision to step down as Kansas chancellor after the 2016-17 school year wasn’t totally unexpected, KU basketball coach Bill Self said after Friday morning’s Boot Camp session in the Jayhawks’ practice facility.
"It doesn’t catch me off guard that anybody would announce retirement. I think everybody knows that, at some point, that was going to happen. I just think it kind of surprised everybody that it was so abrupt," Self said of Thursday’s announcement by Gray-Little, who has served as chancellor since August 2009.
"That’s not that long from now. What is it, nine months? But congratulations to her. She’s earned her time to relax and enjoy life and certainly has been great for our university. She’s been great for athletics, but I think she’s been fabulous for our university as a whole. I’m happy for her, and I’ll be excited to see who accepts the challenge moving forward, but I really believe she’ll leave this place on really, really solid footing," Self added.
ESPN’s Holly Rowe, who has been battling cancer since last February, spoke to KU’s men’s and women’s basketball players on Monday and the football team Tuesday. She gave tips on on interviewing and other aspects of media relations with Jayhawk student-athletes.
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"She looked great. She said she’s feeling pretty good. If she says she’s feeling pretty good, she’s probably feeling OK," Self said with a smile. "I think she’s doing well, just a little tired. But health-wise and everything, I think she felt good. The chemo and stuff that she’s had to take, like it would on anybody I’m sure, takes its toll from a fatigue standpoint. But she’s off of it now, and hopefully, all tests are positive moving forward.
"I think she’s great, and the guys all love her. And she likes them. They can be loose and open with her. I think she does a really good job," Self added.