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Pat Kelsey wasn’t Louisville’s first or even second choice, but can still be successful as Cardinals coach



Pat Kelsey wasn't Louisville's first or even second choice, but can still be successful as Cardinals coach
Google News Recentlyheard

Google News Recentlyheard

Each Louisville teaching search of my lifetime hasn’t turned out properly — proof being that Louisville simply needed to conduct a training search two years after conducting one other teaching search that got here simply 4 years after Louisville’s earlier teaching search concluded.

It has been a tough stretch.

However each Louisville teaching search of my lifetime has kind of landed in an apparent place that excited the fanbase. The Cardinals have by no means shopped too far down their checklist of candidates.

After, and even earlier than, Denny Crum retired in 2001, Louisville dreamed of Rick Pitino and landed him. After Pitino was fired in 2017, Louisville wished Chris Mack and landed him. After Mack resigned in 2022, Louisville prioritized Kenny Payne and landed him. Did all of these issues work out? Clearly not. However the level is that Louisville has endlessly been the kind of place candidates have had a tough time turning down — most notably Mack, who left his alma mater (Xavier) simply weeks after securing a No. 1 seed within the 2018 NCAA Event as a result of even he believed the Louisville job was too good of a job to show down.

Issues have clearly modified, although.

That is what the previous few weeks have proven us.

As a result of on Thursday afternoon, on a campus that has celebrated three nationwide championships, Louisville will introduce Pat Kelsey as its subsequent basketball coach. To be clear, he could be nice — and I hope that he’s. However I believe even Pat Kelsey would inform you that he isn’t taking this job with something near the resumes Pitino and Mack delivered to the desk nor the fanfare that accompanied Payne’s hiring, misguided because it was.

Louisville did not wish to rent Pat Kelsey.

The Cardinals wished Scott Drew — however he as a substitute wished to remain at Baylor. The Cardinals wished FAU coach Dusty Might — however he as a substitute wished to maneuver to Michigan. Relying on the supply, a minimum of one or two or 20,000 different folks straight or not directly handed on the job earlier than Louisville turned to Kelsey, who has been a Division I coach for 12 years however by no means received an NCAA Event sport. Once more, to be clear, that neither means this can be a dangerous rent nor doomed to fail. Kelsey is a pointy man with tons of vitality and an enormous persona. I may simply see this working and dealing properly.

Pat Kelsey and son Johnny had loads to smile concerning the final two seasons at Charleston.
Getty Photographs

However that is not the purpose.

The purpose is that the market simply confirmed us that the Louisville job, for one cause or one other, has slipped in stature dramatically for the reason that college employed a Large East coach in March 2018 who’d simply made eight NCAA Tournaments in a nine-year span and superior to the Candy 16 4 completely different occasions. For one cause or one other, Louisville could not sniff that type of candidate this time round.

Is it as a result of Payne ran this system additional into the bottom than anyone may’ve fairly imagined? Or due to the uncertainty surrounding the way forward for the ACC? Or as a result of Louisville’s search was amateur-hour on full show in a means that made issues tougher than they need to’ve been?

All three issues may’ve performed a job, I suppose.

Both means, it would not matter now. As a result of, at Louisville, all that issues now could be that the college and group give Kelsey the sources essential to succeed. Relaxation assured, his work ethic will cheat no one. If this goes properly, it’s going to be as a result of he was all the time constructed for one of these job. If this does not go properly, it will not be as a result of he neither understood the job he is taking nor methods to assault it.

As all the time, we’ll see.

It is simply that — and I suppose that is my backside line, however it’s simply that — it is wild to consider Louisville going from a spot that employed Naismith Memorial Corridor of Famers and employed Large East champions to a spot that is now hiring somebody who could be equally nice however would not include something near the identical type of credentials. Pat Kelsey could possibly be the proper individual to return the Cardinals to relevancy. Like I stated, we’ll see. However this whole scenario ought to function a reminder to each different elite program within the sport that even you may slip considerably when dangerous selections comply with dangerous selections.

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