Skip to main content

Watch: Kenny Payne Introduced as Louisville Men's Basketball Head Coach

Payne played for the Cardinals under head coach Denny Crum, and since developed into one of the top assistants in college basketball.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - A new era of Louisville men's basketball is here.

On Friday, the University of Louisville Athletic Association approved former Cardinal and longtime Kentucky assistant coach Kenny Payne to be the program's next head coach.

"Cardinal basketball is more than just a game," interim president Lori Gonzalez said in the Spirit Room of the KFC Yum! Center for Payne's announcement press conference.. "It's important to our city, it's important to the campus, and we are so pleased today to have this wonderful announcement."

Several influential figures both within program, the city of Louisville and the Commonwealth of Kentucky were present for Payne's announcement press conference. This included numerous former players and coaches, Louisville mayor Greg Fischer and Governor Andy Beshear.

"It's a really good day for the University of Louisville. Actually. I think today is a great day for the University of Louisville," Beshear said. "Today, UofL takes a really good step, and my belief is that there are many better days ahead for this university, and that is because Kenny Payne is home."

Payne was a four-year player for the Cardinals from 1985 to 1989 under Hall of Fame head coach Denny Crum, helping Louisville win a national championship in 1986. He also developed a reputation as an elite recruiter and one of the top assistants in all of college basketball during his decade on staff at Kentucky.

Scroll to Continue

Read More

"I'm so humbled," Payne said. "This is so surreal. This is unbelievable. To be able to come back and have a whole state embrace this ... the support has been off the chain."

Below is Kenny Payne's full introductory press conference:

(Photo of Kenny Payne: Scott Utterback - Courier Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK)

You can follow Louisville Report for future coverage by liking us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram:

Facebook - @LouisvilleOnSI
Twitter - @LouisvilleOnSI
Instagram - @louisville_report

You can also follow Deputy Editor Matthew McGavic at @Matt_McGavic on Twitter