Anyone who is a UofL fan knows who Kenny Klein is. Athletic Directors and coaches have come and gone, but Kenny Klein has been a mainstay for UofL Athletics. Today, it was announced that Klein will be stepping down from his roles as Senior Associate Athletic Director and Sports Information Director after 39 years on the job.
A Hall of Fame talent, pioneer in the field of sports communications and beloved Cardinal Forever, our own @KKCards will retire this summer after nearly forty years devoted to Louisville Athletics.— Louisville Athletics (@GoCards) April 28, 2022
We are forever grateful.
Mr. Klein was the point man for the media and their dealings with the men’s basketball program. However, he also had numerous other roles outside of his job duties at UofL. Among them, he coordinated computerized statistics for 36 Final Fours, assisted in media operations annually for the Kentucky Derby, and was the local media center committee chairman for the numerous PGA events held at Valhalla Golf Course. Those are just a few of the numerous undertakings of a man who spent his life helping media with access to different sports teams and events.
His efforts haven’t gone unrecognized either. Mr. Klein is a member of two Halls of Fame. In 2015, he was inducted into the College Sports Information Directors of America Hall of Fame. Then in 2017 he was inducted into the Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame.
Mr. Klein was arguably the best SID in all of college athletics. Most anytime a UofL men’s basketball game was on national tv, there always seemed to be a mention of him. And each mention inevitably seemed to be about how kind and hardworking he was. Not having him there around the media table court side will be strange after 39 years, but he’s definitely earned his rest. However, fear not as Mr. Klein will remain with the UofL men’s basketball program in another, unspecified role. So, he’s not completely leaving UofL.
Congrats to Kenny Klein on his retirement. For 39 years, he was one of the rocks of UofL Athletics. He is truly a Cardinal Forever.
Please take a minute to read the entire thoughts from Kenny on Twitter..
It’s been a great run, but after over 40 years in college athletics including 39 here at Louisville, I plan to retire at the end of June.https://t.co/I3CKUP004h— Kenny Klein (@KKcards) April 28, 2022
Below, you can read UofL Athletics full press release about Kenny Klein’s retirement:
Press Release From Louisville Athletics:
Veteran Administrator Klein Will Retire After 39 Years at UofL
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Kenny Klein, a veteran administrator of over 40 years in collegiate athletics including the last 39 at the University of Louisville, will retire from UofL at the end of June.
Klein currently serves as Senior Associate Athletic Director on the Cardinals’ senior leadership team and as Sports Information Director. Following his retirement, he is expected to continue to work with the UofL men’s basketball team in another role.
Klein joined the Cardinals’ staff in July of 1983 after nearly two seasons as sports information director at Morehead State University. Prior to that stint, Klein spent four years as an undergraduate and graduate assistant at Murray State University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1981. At the time of his appointment at UofL, he was the youngest SID at an NCAA Division I football institution at 23.
A 2015 inductee into the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Hall of Fame, Klein also worked one season as a student assistant in sports information at Austin Peay State University and was a sports writer for the Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle.
Klein’s devoted efforts in his longtime role at UofL led to his induction into the state’s Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame in 2017. He received the 2012 Katha Quinn Award, presented by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association in recognition for providing outstanding service to media covering college basketball.
Among his administrative roles as the primary men’s basketball contact for the Cardinals, Klein has worked every UofL men’s basketball event, a stretch of 1,309 consecutive games. During that time, the Cardinals posted a combined 888-421 on-court record and achieved numerous conference and national titles.
Klein has coordinated the computerized statistics operation for 36 NCAA Final Fours. In his initial season with the Cardinals, Klein edited the 1983-84 UofL basketball guide which was judged second in the nation by CoSIDA. Klein, who edited UofL’s 352-page basketball history book Above the Rim, has also received multiple other publication awards while at UofL and Murray State.
He served as the media coordinator for the 1987 USA Pan American Games men’s basketball team, has served on the NCAA Final Four media coordination committee and annually assists in media operations for the Kentucky Derby. He was the local media center committee chairman for the 1996, 2000 and 2014 PGA Championships in Louisville, and served in a similar capacity for the 2008 Ryder Cup and 2004 and 2011 Senior PGA Championships. He also assisted in the media operations at the 1999 Ryder Cup in Boston.
Klein serves as vice-chairman of the CoSIDA Scholarship Committee and is the athletic department’s representative for multimedia rights with the ACC, including oversight of the Cardinals’ broadcast operations for the ACC Network.
Klein, who grew up in Southside, Tenn., is married to the former Donna Graham. He has two sons: Alex, who attended UofL, with wife and Beth and his children Clark and Iris; and Brady, a graduate of UofL’s Speed School of Engineering, with wife Carly.