House of Payne

It has been a while since I wrote on the website. Part of that has to do with me now spending my days running up and down the road with my son’s sports teams and the other is just lack of inspiration. If there is one thing I’ve learned doing this it’s that I have to be inspired to write.

There has been a lack of inspiration to write anything about Louisville Basketball but today I’ve been inspired and decided to dust off the keyboard and give this writing thing a whirl.

My inspiration comes today as bigtime sports names start dropping the news that Kenny Payne will be the next head basketball coach at the University of Louisville. This news comes during a time of despair for Louisville fans but tells me that the Athletic Department has decided to invest in us again. This is the hire that needed to happen and it appears that it has been done.

For year’s now the Louisville Basketball program has been trying to get back to its roots. Coach Mack will be known for a lot of things he did wrong but the one thing he did right was to start to connect that bridge to the past. We may not be here today without him making that effort.

Watching how far the program had drifted from those guys in the 80s it’s awesome that now one of them will shape the Louisville Basketball program for generations to come.

For it to be Kenny Payne makes it even cooler for me. He was one of my favorite Louisville players. At one point I looked up to and imitated him right down to my socks. He would wear those socks up to his knees. He was such a laid-back/cool player on the court but when he got the ball in the post he took care of his business.

He seems very much like that same guy today. All of his peers and anyone who knows him personally raves about his laid-back and cool demeanor. A quality that some have mentioned makes him a beast on the recruiting trail. We could count on Kenny Payne to deliver when he was a player and we can count on him to do it as a Coach.

With NIL and the transfer portal, the game of college basketball has changed forever. It’s more important than ever to have the right person representing your brand and I can’t think of a better person than Kenny Payne. Regardless of what your UK buddies tell you Kenny is one of us. He represents a time when our program was a giant. A time that we all long for.

The Louisville Basketball program had so much swag and so many characters back then. And they won. I want to see our program get all that back and believe that it will under Coach Payne. I have a renewed sense of pride and enthusiasm again that I haven’t had in a while. I’m going to get myself some tube socks and start wearing them to my knees, I’m going to hang my flag up and throw my L’s up. Can’t wait to watch my first game in the House of Pain with my son. It’s all happening! Enjoy it folks!

Go Cards!


Ahhhhhhhhh…… Yesterday was a rough day for players and the fans of the University of Louisville football program. I’ve been a fan thru some great days and have been a fan thru some rough ones. I blame staff turnover and the inability to keep a coach here when he does start putting together a great program. Coach Strong and his staff should have been offered the moon to keep them here. Program hasn’t been the same since.

At Louisville, coaches come and they go too often to sustain any real success here. Now we find ourselves in another one of those situations. Sticking it out and letting the cake bake would seem like a sensible option. Give Coach Satterfield time to put this thing together as he wants and give him a chance to get it rolling.

Does he want to do that? That’s what I struggle with. Does this coach want to be here and does he want to build a successful program at the University of Louisville? Is he going to be able to establish that kind of trust with this fanbase and is he going to be able to win the support he needs to do that back? Can he do it?

It hurts watching a program like UC reach that next level as a program and see firsthand what the right kind of hire can do. I mention UC because they are a similar base and situation as us. It just proves that it can be done. Louisville Football has proven it can be done. But can UC sustain that success or will they lose their Coach like we always seem to when things are finally going in the right direction?

That’s the trouble with a program like UC and Louisville. Is being able to keep a coach to ensure the program keeps rolling. If you do lose them to a bigger place then the AD has to make the right hire to replace them. It’s critical at a program like Louisville.

Yesterday hurt. There is going to be a lot of talk surrounding Coach Satt and his staff now. If they can salvage this season, beat UK, and get into a decent bowl game I can live with that. Think most fans move on. If things continue to get worse and we lose again to our arch-rival without making it to a bowl game then I’m ready for a change.

Honestly, I don’t know that a bowl game makes any difference if we get beat by the cayuts again. How far can we let them get ahead? They are already taking recruits from Louisville’s backyard and are gaining control over recruiting in the state.

A great Louisville Coach once said time is the only variable. When he said that I think he had in mind that other Coaches would come along and continue to build towards that National Title and towards establishing a prominent program. We’ve had some great coaches continue us down that path but lately, we’ve been going in the wrong direction.

Will things get better? All we can do as fans are support and cheer for this team. The players have to be put in a situation to win games. I don’t think they were given that opportunity Saturday and that sucks. There is a lot of talent and speed on this team. Too much to blow a 17 point lead in the fourth quarter. It’s troubLing, to say the least. 😩

A banner night for the Louisville Basketball Program

The very first event my son attended with me (he was about 5 months old) was the 2012 Final Four celebration at 4th Street Live. That was such a fun season and I became a father. I drove to every game in the Cardinals run in the 2013 NCAA Tournament and then drove back home to be with my wife and then 1yr old. My wife was an angel for letting me do that. Sacrifices made…

I tell these stories because so much of our lives and time is invested into the sports teams we follow and love. So many memories and so many personal experiences that are attached to it all. That’s why we all took it so personally when the NCAA leveled the Louisville Basketball Program.

I had a lot invested in the two seasons, Final Four and National Title that was vacated by the NCAA. And really liked our Hall of Fame coach that got fired. It’s like I woke up one day and had 3 important years erased from my life. I know that might sound extreme but I’m passionate about my Cardinals. It’s God, Family and my Cardinals who take up most of the real estate in this heart.

It’s that way for most of us. That’s why the Louisville fan base is one of the best in the country. It’s not just a past time it’s a part of us. And that’s why a night like Tuesday night meant so much. We didn’t get back all those wins, the Final Four banner or the National Title Tuesday night. We did get some redemption.

The symbolism of it all was amazing. Louisville coming into the game against Michigan as the #1 team in the country. The first number one ranking since that 2013 season. The Final Four MOP Banner being hung in the rafters. That gracious speech by Darrel Griffith. Leaning on that tradition helped in a rough time. And seeing Luke get his moment back. Then for him to turn around and give that moment to us all.

The night wouldn’t have been the same if the #1 Cardinals hadn’t taken care of business. Take care of business they did. They locked down one of the hottest offensive teams in the country on way to the 58-43 victory. They put the exclamation on the night.

This group of players deserves a lot of credit for their resilience. Ryan McMahon had three different coaches and Jordan Nwora got caught up in a coaching change that could have resulted in him transferring. That 2017-18 season was tough for him. They have all endured and overcome the obstacles that can plague a coaching change in the midst of chaos.

I don’t think Coach Mack gets enough credit for the job he has done. The guy came in amidst all the sanctions and chaos. Not to mention the beating we took before all that happened. The program was as low as it has been in my lifetime. Two years later and we are again top of the heap. Ask Dave Padgett how easy it is. Mack deserves all the credit in the world. Can’t just glaze over it as if anyone could have done what he has. They couldn’t.

I was at the game on Tuesday night with my son. He is now 8yrs old and loves his Cardinals. He’s asked me a hundred times this week ”daddy are we number one” and proudly I could tell him after this game yes. Our Cardinals are #1. Louisville Basketball is back…

What a night!

Jay Scrubb decides to bring his legend to Louisville Basketball

Louisville Basketball gets the first commitment of the 2020 class and it’s a big one.

If you love a good come back story then you will love cheering for Jay Scrubb. A guy who came up in the tough part of town Scrubbs personal and academic issues plagued his early basketball endeavors. He struggled to find his groove. A guy who could have easily given up and fell threw the cracks but continued to fight and find a way.

He found a way at Trinity High School and things started to change his junior year. Scrubb averaged 16 points per game and was named Seventh Region Player of the Year by The Courier-Journal. As a senior, he averaged 17.8 points and 7.1 rebounds per game and repeated as Seventh Region Player of the Year. He was also a finalist for Kentucky Mr. Basketball.

For Scrubb the struggle was real and he had to join a junior college team after his senior season because he was academically ineligible for an NCAA Division I scholarship. Again he overcame adversity and instead of becoming just another Juco casualty he turned up. And turned up in a big way.

Scrubb is the #1 JUCO player in the country. He has made a name for himself with his grit, determination, athleticism and unique skill set.

He has a 40-inch vertical leap and a silky smooth jumper. This dude can score at every level and has superior court awareness. Scrubb averaged 20.2 points and 8.9 rebounds while shooting 46.4 percent from 3-point range last season for John A. Logan College.

Recruiting guru Evan Daniels said:

”Landing the JUCO standout is equivalent to getting a top 15 high school prospect”.

This summer Scrubb was invited to training camp for the United States national under-19 team. He was the only junior college player to earn an invite.

I love it when the University of Louisville gets the hometown guy but this is something even bigger. This young man has took all of crap that life threw at him. He took some big punches and got back up. He embodies the spirit of a young Ali.

Jay Scrubb has created quite a legend for himself over the last few years and I love that he decided to make the Cardinal Nation part of his story. Can’t wait to cheer for him and can’t wait to see how this story ends.

Scrubb will have two years of eligibility once he arrives on campus next season.

Will the legend of the Puma come to Pass…

Things can change quickly in Fall camp but according to the current depth chart, it looks like Jawon Pass will get the first snap when the Cardinals take the field against the Irish on September 2nd. It won’t be the first time Pass has took the first snap of the season in a big game for the Cardinals. After waiting out a red-shirt year in 2016 and only playing sparingly in 2017 Pass got his first chance to shine during the 2018 season taking the first snap against Alabama.

Pass completed 20-of-39 passes for 252 yards and two touchdowns against the Crimson Tide and while that night wasn’t one to remember it looked like the Cardinals passing game was going to be on track as in previous seasons and folks still seemed optimistic about Pass. We all know now how that turned out. The season was abysmal and Pass who took the first snap wouldn’t even see the field against Kentucky in the final game of 2018.

This isn’t the way the legend of the Puma was supposed to end. And yes Jawon Pass had created quite a legend for himself as a High School athlete. With an impressive mix of height (6-4), size (209 pounds) and speed (4.50 40-yard dash time), Pass was rated the No. 5 dual-threat quarterback, No. 19 Georgia product and the 228th recruit overall in the 2016 ESPN 300. As a 4-star dual-threat quarterback, Pass had a number of potential suitors. That included all of the Big Boys. Alabama, Clemson, Auburn, Florida, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, Ole Miss and Texas A&M all recruited him along with others.

Pass committed to Louisville on July 16, 2015, but he kept his options open right until National Signing Day and entertained flipping to Alabama or Auburn as the the cycle came to an end. It was said that Nick Saban wanted Pass badly at Alabama and he even took a last minute trip to Bama before making a decision. By this time Louisville fans were in a frenzy about what could be. So much so that hundreds of the Cardinals faithful made their way over to Creekside High School in Atlanta the night before the Auburn game in 2015 to watch Pass’s Carver High School team play. I made that trip with my family to show our love for the young Puma.

Highly regarded and one of the most anticipated recruits to make their way to Louisville the legend of Puma has to have a better ending than that debacle last year. I seen a scouting report on Pass that read like this:

“Pass is like a ball of clay that needs to be molded. There is a lot to work with here talent-wise, but also a lot of technical work to be done. Must continue to develop knowledge of the game so that he can become a passer who is also an athlete as opposed to an athlete playing quarterback. Coaches will like his upside and rightly so. Is a good player that has a very high ceiling for development.”

Bobby Petrino took that ball of clay and instead of turning it into a work of art left it looking like the ash trey I made in my home economics class my senior year in high school. As a Fourth-year performer Jawon has passed for 2,198 yards and 10 touchdowns in 16 career games completing only 55.5 percent of his throws with 12 interceptions.

I don’t know about molding clay but the skinny on Coach Satterfield is that he knows how to mold a college QB and he knows how to develop a football players talents. There’s been and will continue to be plenty of chatter about a potential turnaround for Pass, but ultimately I think it will be up to Pass to realize his potential and make himself relevant again.

There couldn’t be a bigger support system for Jawon Pass and the legend of the Puma than the Cardinal Nation. A lot of us were on board from the beginning and want to see this thing have a happy ending. I will continue to be a strong supporter in Pass and still believe he can be what everyone thought he could be back in 2016. Now he just has to believe in himself again. I sure hope the legend of the Puma will come to Pass.

L’s Up!

College Football back this week… Kinda.

This week marks the unofficial start of the college football season for us here in the ACC and others across the country. It’s a lean time of the year for college sports but conference media days is a thirst-quenching event for all avid fans. Coach Satterfield will have WR Seth Dawkins and LB Dorian Etheridge with him at the 2019 ACC Football Kickoff, July 17-18, at The Westin Charlotte in Charlotte, North Carolina. Two players that will have to play a major role in the Cardinals 6th season in the ACC.

Louisville enters year six in the ACC with a winning record. At 21-19 the Cardinals have established some ground in the conference. We took our licks last year for sure (0-8) but have been competitive overall. The Cardinals have added a few new trophies to the case since being ACC members and have taken it right to the blue blood of the conference.

This year a new challenge. Louisville has never headed into a season in a Power 5 conference with a losing record from the previous season. To add to this challenge a complete overhaul of the coaching staff. The last time things were this bad in Louisville the Cardinals were coming off a 15-21 record in three years under Kragthorpe and the schedule was a little more forgiving for the first-year head coach Strong.

Coach Satterfield was named the 23rd head coach to lead the Cardinals back in December. He had a remarkable 51-24 record at App State including a 38-10 conference mark in six seasons with the Mountaineers. His conference record of 34-6 in five Sun Belt seasons is the best in the league over that span. The winning recipe has arrived in Louisville but will there be enough ingredients in the mix for a successful year in the ACC.

With 19 returning starters the cupboard is far from bare for Satterfield and his staff heading into the 2019 campaign. With 7 starters on offense and 10 on defense returning to the line-up, I’d like to believe that the program can be competitive in conference play and string together enough wins to make it into a postseason Bowl game.

We got rid of what was supposed to be the problem. The only thing left from that 0-8 ACC debacle last season is these players. How will they respond? Could it be that some of them were the problem last year? There are a lot of questions for this team heading into another ACC Football season. We’ll get answers to some of the trivial stuff this week as Coach Satterfield and players make the rounds at media days but the real answers will come between those lines this fall.

Coach Satterfield and the players with him at ACC Media Day will be at the podium on Wednesday from 3:30pm to 4:00pm. You can catch all of the live video and coverage at ACC KICKOFF CENTRAL.

Coach Satterfield has faced Clemson, Miami and Wake Forest from the ACC going 0-3 in those games.

Rooftops, an RV & The Berm It’s June in Louisville

Dan McDonnell took over as head coach of the Louisville Baseball program in 2007 and has turned it into a perennial powerhouse. In fact, Louisville entered 2019 with the most wins of any Division I program from 2007-18 with 554.

The Cardinal 9 (as we call them affectionately) has become a household name nationally enjoying a historic run by remaining ranked in at least one major national poll every week since the release of the 2012 preseason rankings. It is longest such span in school history.

All of that success has equaled to a lot of fun for Cardinal fans and my family looks forward to our trips to Jim Patterson Stadium in June for postseason baseball. Louisville has hosted the NCAA regional round eight of the last 11 seasons. My son is 7 years old and that playground on the Berm has become a staple of his young summer life. I think he has a little click of dudes he sees every summer. It’s awesome.

My wife is not even a sports person and she enjoys our summer trips to Jim Patterson Stadium. I remember the first time she saw the rooftop renegades. She thought it was awesome that folks could sit on top of their house and cheer for their favorite team. Oh, yea we get on the rooftops for our Cardinals. Just one of the many unique and glorious things you’ll see at the University of Louisville’s baseball stadium in June.

I also love seeing fans sitting on the rooftops and that one group of Louisville fans that park their RV down the third base line. They tailgating like it’s September down there. What other ballparks in the NCAA will you see these things?

I’m no college Baseball aficionado. I follow the team loosely through the season getting most of my updates and Louisville Baseball news from @GeneralWasp on Twitter. I am a sucker for nostalgia. And I really look forward to going to Louisville Baseball games with my family in June.

It was awful missing out on our summer tradition in 2018, but the Cardinals are back in the friendly confines of Jim Patterson Stadium, where they have won 15 consecutive regional games. Win, lose or draw, ”Fullerton’s 11th inning always-bending line drive over the left-field wall in 2015”, ”the UC Santa Barbara walk-off home run off Zack Burdi in 2016”, ”that awesome dog pile after beating the Cayuts 6-2 in 2017” the good and the bad all part of the experiences. I have been there for them all.

With guys like Alex Binelas, Tyler Fitzgerald, Justin Lavey and Logan Wyatt leading the Louisville offense and guys like Reid Detmers and Michael McAvene controlling the mound our Cardinals are going to be a tough out at home where the Cardinals are 20-3 in regional games.

Its baseball and there are no guarantees on the outcome. We can only hope we have some guys this season who want to seize their moment. I can guarantee that it will be a great time being around all of the great pageantries that Louisville postseason baseball provides. Enjoy it Cardinal fans. I’ll see you at the Berm!

All Info on NCAA Regional from
Parking, Single Game Tickets, Will Call Info – 2019 NCAA Regional

Louisville Basketball gets a Fresh new commit

Spring has sprung and we have reached a point in the sports season where players are coming and going. A lot of guys have entered what the NCAA calls the transfer portal, some will test their luck in the NBA waters, and some will decide where they want to play their final season of College Basketball. Today graduate transfer Lamarr “Fresh” Kimble decided that he will use his final season of eligibility to play for the Cardinals.

Kimble says that the “Fresh” nickname has followed him around since he was younger. Lamarr says that the Fresh nickname was originally given to his father and he just adopted it over the years. He says that it has meant different things during his life and has been used to describe his skills with a basketball. I don’t know about fresh, but he has proven to be a winner throughout his basketball career and seems to have the character and leadership qualities we have grown accustomed to here at Louisville in regard to graduate transfers.

An all-state performer throughout high school he helped his teams win multiple state titles. He carried that ability with him to St. Joseph’s where he earned Atlantic 10 All-Rookie honors helping the Hawks win a conference Title coming off the bench his freshman season. He started to really find his groove averaging 15.5 points and 4.5 assist a game before injuring his foot. This injury would cause him to miss the final 7 games of his sophomore season and all but one game during his junior season.

Despite having to overcome yet another injury to his hand missing another 10 games Kimble had a great final season with the Hawks where he was the second leading scorer with 15.6 points per game…, and ranked second on the team in assists with 2.8 per game… A couple of times last season he had back to back 22-point games and even hung a career-high 31 points on #13 West Virginia.

In doing my research on Kimble two things stood out to me. 1. Is that this dude had 3 game winning shots during his time at St Joseph’s. That tells me that he is a game winner and wants the ball in his hands when it’s all on the line. You can’t have enough guys like this on a team. And 2. Kimble is the only player in St. Joseph’s school history to serve as a team captain for three years. Now that’s Fresh.

We have been very lucky to have some quality young men come into the Louisville program as graduate transfers. Guys with exceptional ability on the court and exceptional character off the court. By all accounts Kimble follows that mold. We have a great group of freshmen coming to campus next season. That group is going to need the kind of leadership and example that Lamarr can provide. Former St Joseph’s Coach Phil Martelli said: “[Kimble] is not a scoring machine but he is a leader.”

I couldn’t be more excited about the direction of the Louisville Basketball program. Most early prognosticators have them ranked in their Top 10’s to start the 2019-20 season. We needed to add a few more pieces for it to be a special one and Coach Mack is off to a good start here. Welcome “Fresh” Kimble.

Signing Day more than just numbers for Louisville Football

This is my first football post on the website since around October. Like most of you, I want to get excited about Louisville Football again. I attended my 7th straight Louisville Signing Day party on Wednesday night. I’ve sat thru a lot of great player footage at these events over the years and listened to some great Coaches describing their new players.

I still remember the Signing Day Party in 2015 and Coach McGee closing out that night talking about Lamar Jackson.

I think we all knew that he was going to be special. There was a buzz in the air and we all felt great about Louisville Football that night.

I felt a similar buzz in the Brown Williamson Club on Wednesday night. It wasn’t because we signed a future Heisman winner, and it wasn’t because we signed a highly ranked class. There was a buzz in the air because we signed guys who will be the foundation of a new Era of Louisville Football.

Coach Satterfield and his staff had 58 Days to shore up the 2019 Recruiting Class. They ended up inking 16 players in this Class. Four guys signed early and 12 guys signed on Wednesday afternoon.

The class includes five offensive linemen (most desperate position), four linebackers, two running backs, two tight ends, a cornerback, defensive end and quarterback. They were able to get some great guys in such a short amount of time including 4-star LB/DE Ja’Darien Boykin and 4-star LB/DE Zach Edwards.

This class was about much more than the number. The new Cardinals will play a big role in the culture change that the new staff is trying to instill in the Locker Room. Sure it was about trying to find guys that were good but this time it was just as important to find Good guys…

I think the new Louisville Football staff hit their mark. And you could see the roots of that culture change on Wednesday night listening to them describe their new players. It was also apparent in how the Coaching staff was interacting with each other. This is already a very tight-knit group. The excitement is real for them and you could see that.

Excitement is contagious and it made its way around the room on Wednesday night. Things are headed in the right direction and its the guys who signed in this class that will be the foundation going forward. I’m looking forward to Spring Practice and looking forward to getting the bad taste out of my mouth from last seasons debacle. I want to be excited about Louisville Football again.

Welcome to our new Cardinals:

OL Zach Williamson

CB Jamel Starks

LB Allen Smith

RB Aidan Robbins

TE Ean Pfeifer

LB Monty Montgomery

RB Jalen Mitchell

TE Dez Melton


LB Dorian Jones

OL Jackson Gregory

LB Zach Edwards

QB Evan Conley

OL Renato Brown

OL Joshua Black

DE Ja’Darien Boykin

(Graphics courtesy