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Kenny Payne a candidate at Southern Miss?


With Donnie Tyndall off to Tennessee, there is now a new head coaching vacancy down there in Hattiesburg at Southern Miss and one of the names being tossed around in the early stages is Kenny Payne. Payne was a candidate for the Golden Eagles job two years ago when Tyndall was hired to replace Larry Eustacy; CBSSports.com’s Jon Rothstein went as far as to tweet at the time: “Southern Miss’ replacement for Larry Eustachy should begin and end with UK assistant Kenny Payne.”

Payne is from Laurel, Mississippi, 30 minutes from the Southern Miss campus, and has several ties to the area. He’s also a proven recruiter nationally, one of the top assistants in college basketball.

It’ll be tough to see Payne go if this picks up steam and a hire is made, especially after seeing UK lose Orlando Antigua earlier this month, but it would be a good move for both parties. Payne returns home; Southern Miss gets a great coach.

We’ll keep an eye on it.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

18 responses to “Kenny Payne a candidate at Southern Miss?”

  1. Steve

    Well, that would suck! But I guess if I am going to be consistent, I just have to say… succeed and proceed.

  2. TD

    I would really hate for UK to lose him, especially after Antigua’s (and Strickland’s) departures. It would be great for him, but bad for the Cats, really bad.

  3. RP's Face Lift

    Can’t hold guys back and if they are on Cal’s staff they are hot. Congrats to Donnie Tyndall (to UT).

  4. Brian the Derpface

    Gonna be hard to replace Payne, Antigua, and Strickland, get the new staff on the same page, and take a month off for hip surgery this summer. Anyone have Tony Barbee’s number?

    1. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door

      From what I’ve heard down here in AL, Barbee was horrible at promoting the AU program (something Bruce Rhinestone was already GREAT at when he stepped off the plane and started high-fiving fans), so I don’t believe AT ALL he is the guy we need to fill the shoes of an effective recruiter like Payne or Orlando. He might be okay with game film and X’s and O’s, but not recruiting.

  5. DAKARI STOOPS

    I hope Kenny does whats right for himself and his family, It would be a huge loss for us and a huge gain for Southern Miss. BTW What ever happened to Darnell Dodson??

  6. Coach Petrino

    He should hang on with Cal for another year or two. After that he can go after the job he wants…going to So. Miss is a dead end place for basketball.

    1. jus sayin

      They were 29-7 this season, 27-10 last season, 25-9 the season before and have had two deep NIT runs and a NCAA tourney birth… not bad for a mid major.

      You could do far worse for your first Head Coaching job.

    2. Donnie Tyndall

      Thanks for the advice Coach P.

    3. Brian the Derpface

      Last two head coaches of Southern Miss made upward moves following their tenure: Larry Eustachy to Colorado State, Donnie Tyndall to UT. Might want to rethink that one, Coach.

  7. DangeRuss

    Would hate to loose KP but cant blame him for taking the job if its offered!

  8. Han

    Man, if he goes, good luck to him, but it would really suck to lose 2 of Cal’s 3 assistants and Strickland all at the same time.

    But if it happens, no better time than when Cal may have a lot of talent coming back and thus a little less teaching to do.

  9. hal

    its hattiesburg, ms. conference usa.past 2 coaches have succeeded on to better jobs there, but gotta think he could get a better job than sou miss while at uk……

  10. HackRichards

    Maybe Pitino could be hired as Cal’s ASSistant?

  11. Don

    That’s a big hit to the staff, but guys like Pitino and Donovan have taken hits like this and still managed to do well.

    I really like Kenny. He’s a great big man coach.

  12. scared guy

    Kenny Payne has one of the meanest ‘stink eyes’ ive ever witnessed… the tv once zoomed in on him during a game when he was giving.. ‘the look’.. and my 2 year old started crying and my dog ran out of the room with its tail between its legs.

  13. Morehead Cat

    Congrats to Coach Tyndall on the job in Knoxville. Great coach at MSU and Southern Miss. I would hate to see KP go but Cal will get the right replacement should it happen, no doubt

  14. Hoops Eagle

    KP has no chance of getting this job. He did not two years ago nor will he ever.

    People down here have not forgotten his insults of USM when he was a player at louisville.

    “We practice to win national championships, they practice to be Louisville”. Funny thing is we got our first win over them after his quote.