Larry Brown’s relationship to Self, Calipari makes tonight tough

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John Calipari and Bill Self have more in common than the 2008 national title game and jobs at two of college basketball’s premier programs.

They both got their coaching starts at Kansas and worked for Larry Brown

Both coaches remain close with Brown, 71, who coached the Jayhawks from 1983 through the 1987-88 season. He’s visited Kansas and Kentucky practices, offered advice when asked and watched the NCAA tournament games.

Those two relationships are also why Brown won’t be in New Orleans watching the title game.

“I just thought it best I excuse myself,” Brown told the Kansas City Star.

That Star story details the relationship Brown maintains with the two, along with the influence he’s had on them. Both were assistants at KU, though Calipari began in Lawrence under Ted Owens. Brown later hired Self as a graduate assistant to fill Calipari’s role.

It’s a pretty fun read, too. Brown’s hoops knowledge is evident,  as is the respect Calipari and Self have for their former boss.

And who’s he cheering for tonight? “I’m not going to reveal that,” he says. “I can’t.”

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