This week’s edition is more of a rant rather than an informational, educational, entertainment or editorial piece.
I’ve had all I can take of the negative talk and bashing of our current men’s basketball coach. I don’t get on the message boards because I can only take so much before I call out people’s ignorance but I do get on Facebook and Twitter and that’s enough for me. It seems that after every game, I see many people complaining about this team, their performance and especially their coach. It’s a bad look and Lord knows we don’t need anymore of that.
It is my belief that most of these people are diehard Rick Pitino fans. I get that some of you will back Rick to the day you die but this isn’t about him. This is about the University of Louisville. Nobody is bigger than the University, – not me – not you – not Rick – not Tom – not Dr. Postel – NOBODY! It’s time to move on and put all of this behind us. Support the school you love unconditionally. But we can’t do that if we are divided.
That’s why we can’t have people calling out our basketball coach after just a few games. I understand the frustration and I believe it’s OK to call out the coaches, who get paid a lot of money, if they are not performing up to their pay grade but at least give coach Padgett a chance.
David Padgett went from wondering if he even had a job in late September to acting head coach while the University figured out what to do with head coach Rick Pitino during the FBI investigation. One month to the day before the first game of the season, Padgett was named Interim coach and had exactly 0 assistant coaches on his staff. He wasn’t given a lot of time to get things in order and the team wasn’t given much time to adjust to the loss of their hall of fame head coach.
Yes, we have gone from a hall of fame coach who has 40 years of experience to a 32-year-old who is in his first year as a head coach. And most of you expect everything to be perfect. It’s time to realize that there will be an adjustment period. People are quick to forget that the core of this team (minus Donovan Mitchell, Mango Mathiang, Jaylen Johnson and David Levitch), coached by Pitino, blew a 22 point lead in an early season loss to Baylor. They lost to a Wake Forest team who finished 8-9 in ACC play and they also made an early exit in the NCAA tourney at the hands of 7th seeded Michigan after leading by 9 in the second half.
It just goes to show that no matter who the coach is, there will be games or stretches of time that the team will not perform like we want. But what helps the team get through these times are the fans. If we are not showing up in full force or if we are arguing amongst ourselves then we are not doing our part.
Now, more than ever, the team needs our unity and full support. Now is not the time to bash our coach. Be patient.
If the team hasn’t shown improvement and isn’t playing close to their potential after about 25 games, then feel free to express your frustrations but now is way too early to expect this team to be at peak level. Give Padgett a chance!
I’m not ignorant enough to say this team doesn’t have some problems because clearly they do but I also know there is a lot of talent on this team. The potential to be really good is there. Just remember that a loss or win in December does not make or break a season.
Was Padgett ready to become head coach of a program with the tradition of Louisville? Probably not but Louisville didn’t really give themselves adequate time to find a coach and let’s be honest – a coach with the credentials that Louisville is looking for is not going to take the job until the NCAA hands down their punishment. Padgett is a smart dude and he sees the writing on the wall. He knows he is head coach for just this season so I’m sure he is trying to make the best of it so he can parlay it into a D1 head coaching job for next year and years to come.
I will support coach Padgett throughout the year and I will support whoever the coach is next year. I just ask you to do the same and be patient for the betterment of the team we both love.
As Always, GO CARDS!