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Former Wildcats among 20 worst college basketball coaching hires since 2000

Both Kentucky and Louisville found a head coach named.

Kenny Payne Big Blue Drew - A Sea Of Blue

The University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville are always happy to compete against each other no matter what the circumstance.

With basketball acting as the catalyst, both schools never shy away from ranking and competing.

Our pal, Jeff Goodman from The Messenger, recently compiled a list that neither program was eager to be mentioned on.

Goodman’s “20 Worst Coaching Hires in Men’s College Basketball Since 2000” list was released on Tuesday, and a head coach for both the Cards and Cats made an unfortunate appearance.

Obviously, UL’s Kenny Payne was the reason the article was even written and topped the list at numero uno. The former UK assistant has dealt with nothing but turmoil in his first two seasons at Louisville. His overall record of 10-38 could make you laugh or cry depending on what side of the rivalry you’re on.

Even his biggest critics couldn’t have imagined Payne struggling to this abysmal extent. It goes without saying that his days are numbered as the head basketball coach at UofL. The program has too rich of a hoops history to continue down this path once the 2023-24 season concludes.

Here’s what Goodman had to say about the situation.

{Payne seemed like the perfect choice, and he had complete support to take over the program as a former Louisville star who played in the NBA and then worked as a longtime college assistant (at Oregon and later at Kentucky with John Calipari). Prior to taking over the Cardinals, Payne had been working as an assistant coach with the New York Knicks. In March 2022, he replaced Chris Mack in Louisville — and he’s been beyond miserable. The Cardinals won only four games in his first season, and they are 6-10 this season with back-to-back losses at DePaul and at home against Arkansas State. It’s almost unfathomable how low Payne has taken this once-storied program that has won three national titles.}

By now you’ve probably guessed it — Ole Billy G wound up on Goodman’s list as well.

Billy Gillispie’s 2007 hire at Kentucky checked in at #12 after he was a complete bust, going 40-27 in two seasons.

In one hilarious twist, Billy Clyde also appeared on the list at #4 for the inexplicable hire by Texas Tech. Gillispie would go 8-23 in his lone season as the Red Raiders’ head coach.

Weird times we used to live in, right?

You can read Goodman’s entire article here and will be much, much more appreciative of John Calipari after doing so.