University of Kansas

SMU assistant Jerrance Howard in line to join Kansas basketball staff

Southern Methodist assistant Jerrance Howard is in position to join Bill Self’s staff at Kansas, filling the vacancy created when former assistant Joe Dooley took the head coaching job at Florida Gulf Coast on April 17.

Kansas coach Bill Self told The Eagle on Wednesday that he was still in talks with Howard about the position and that no official announcement was set.

Jason King, a national college basketball for ESPN, reported on Wednesday that Howard had agreed to join the staff.

It would be logical hire for Self, who is entering his 11th season at Kansas. Howard, 33, played for Self at Illinois from 2000-03 and has earned a reputation as an up-and-coming assistant in the industry.

After graduating from Illinois in 2004, he spent three three-plus years working for Billy Gillispie at Texas A&M as an administrative assistant and later worked for Gillispie at Kentucky in basketball operations.

Howard then spent five years working as an assistant for current K-State coach Bruce Weber at Illinois before joining SMU coach Larry Brown’s staff on April 27, 2012. Howard is a native of Peoria, Ill.

Self previously said that he was searching for an assistant that would bring a larger recruiting presence in areas where Kansas was lacking. Dooley was a respected recruiter on the East Coast, but current KU assistant Norm Roberts, who replaced Danny Manning last offseason, also has plenty of ties in that part of the country.

Howard used his Chicago recruiting ties to lure a handful of Chicago kids to SMU. And it’s been long thought that Self was seeking an assistant with recruiting ties in Texas.

“We’re gonna try to fill it with somebody that’s very well-rounded,” Self said in late April, when asked about the opening. “(Somebody) that (will) would bring energy and enthusiasm, be a good on-the-floor coach, and then also be a guy with excellent contacts in areas where we need contacts to make us a bigger presence in those respective areas.”