LAWRENCE, Kan. — There is no joy in the coaching community over what’s happened to Quin Snyder at Missouri, says the last coach Snyder beat.
Kansas’ Bill Self has even called his old colleague to wish him well.
“He didn’t go into one detail on what transpired,” Self said Wednesday. “All the call was for was to wish him well and keep his head high. He sounded upbeat on the phone.”
Ironically, Kansas was the last team the embattled Snyder beat before he resigned under fire as Missouri’s head coach.
After beating the Jayhawks 89-86 in overtime on Jan. 14 at Mizzou Arena, the Tigers lost six in a row, all by double digits, culminated by an embarrassing 90-64 setback at last-place Baylor.
“Firing a coach affects more than that particular person,” Self said. “You’re talking about families, kids in school, you’re talking about relocation, you’re talking about assistant coaches and their families.
“It’s a tough profession which is very competitive. You don’t have enemies in the profession. You have some guys you’re very competitive against. But you don’t ever wish ill will on anyone.”
Missouri, under the direction of interim head coach Melvin Watkins, will play at Kansas this Saturday.
“You want to beat them (other coaches) on the court, or on the field,” Self said. “But after that, there is a strong fraternity of guys that really bond together, that look out for the betterment of all coaches.
“I think you’ll have a lot of people rally around Quin or other coaches who lost their job just because that’s the nature of the business,” Self said.
He also said Missouri would have no trouble getting a good coach to replace Snyder.
“Missouri will attract a great coach because it’s a great job. I can’t see that being a problem,” he said.
But, contrary to some reports, that new coach probably will not be Bill Gillespie. The Texas A&M coach’s name has been mentioned as a possible candidate to replace Snyder.
“I wouldn’t be surprised with anything in this profession. But I talk to Billy all the time,” he said. “It seems like to me if that was going on, he may throw a hint my way.”
As someone who’s changed jobs several times himself, Self urges caution whenever speculation might arise over a coach hiring.
“I’ve been through this before. There’s going to be numerous rumors and all those things,” he said. “But coaches aren’t talking to anybody. They’re focused on their team and I guarantee half the names or three-quarters of the names that are mentioned with any job opening ... there hasn’t been one word out of a coach’s mouth to lead one to believe they’d be interested. Their focus is just their team right now.”