Mitch Sherman, ESPN Staff Writer 417d

Bill Self, on series return, 'not interested in what's best for Missouri'

Men's College Basketball, Kansas Jayhawks, Missouri Tigers

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Bill Self has not warmed to the idea of his Kansas Jayhawks renewing a regular-season series with the Missouri Tigers after a five-year layoff following the Tigers' departure for the SEC.

Self, whose Jayhawks played Missouri in an exhibition Sunday to raise money for hurricane victims, said after the game that he did not endorse anything further between the former border rivals.

"We're going to do what's best for us," Self said. "We're not interested in what's best for Missouri or best for Missouri fans. But if it's best for us to play them, we will. It's not a complicated deal."

First-year Tigers coach Cuonzo Martin, meanwhile, said after the exhibition at the Sprint Center that he'd like to resume the rivalry.

"Of course, you want to play the game," Martin said. "I think it's great for both teams to be able to play a team of that caliber on this stage. I don't know if you'll find a better venue than this one, with the atmosphere and the energy behind it."

The programs have played 268 games -- but, prior to Sunday, none since 2012, when Missouri left the Big 12 to join the Southeastern Conference.

"I'm not going to say never," Self said. "But I don't think there's been any change in our position as far as the university goes. I'm the spokesman, I guess, on this, but trust me, I'm not the only one that feels that way. There was a very large contingent of KU people who weren't happy that we were doing this initially -- until they realized it was a good cause."

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