Skip to main content

Dick Vitale Names The Coach Louisville Should Hire Next

Dick Vitale celebrating during a basketball game.

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 06: Sportscaster Dick Vitale (C) dances with members of the Gonzaga Bulldogs band before the championship game of the West Coast Conference basketball tournament between the Bulldogs and the Brigham Young Cougars at the Orleans Arena on March 6, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Bulldogs won 74-54. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Earlier this week, the Louisville basketball program parted ways with head coach Chris Mack after an 11-9 start to the 2021-22 season. Now, with assistant coach Mike Pegues serving as interim head coach, the Cardinals are on the search for their next program leader.

On Friday, longtime college basketball analyst Dick Vitale gave his head coaching suggestion for the Louisville program.

He argues that the acquisition of current NBA assistant Kenny Payne would result in a significant spike of positive recruiting efforts.

"Come on @LouisvilleMBB don’t waste time bring KENNY PAYNE where he belongs they tell me at Churchill Downs he is 10 lengths ahead. But the big ? Can the administration get the deal done - recruiting would go up big time . 5 star talents will arrive!" Vitale

Come on @LouisvilleMBB don’t waste time bring KENNY PAYNE where he belongs they tell me at Churchill Downs he is 10 lengths ahead. But the big ? Can the administration get the deal done - recruiting would go up big time . 5 star talents will arrive!

— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) January 28, 2022

">wrote on Twitter.

Payne was a member of Louisville's national championship-winning squad in 1986 under then head coach Denny Crum. From 2010-20 he served as an assistant coach under Kentucky's John Calipari before making the jump to the NBA. The 55-year-old coach currently works under Tom Thibodeau as an assistant for the New York Knicks.

If the Cardinals were to hire Payne, he would become the first Black head coach in program history.

Earlier this week, Vitale suggested that the separation of Louisville and Chris Mack is good for both parties.

“Sometimes a divorce is good for both parties. ⁦Chris Mack can coach his record proves that. However when at an elite hoops school like Louisville men’s basketball your TEAM must excel. Mediocrity is not going to make it ⁩& CARDS became M-E-D-I-O-C-R-E!” he wrote.

Who do you think Louisville should hire?