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ESPN: Louisville’s Fall from Grace Falls on Rick Pitino’s Shoulders

Rick Pitino has been away from Louisville for quite some time, but his scandal-filled legacy will continue to cripple the university.

Pitino did plenty of great things during his time at Louisville.  He went to a couple Final Fours, consistently lost to John Calipari and helped bring UofL to the ACC.  A Hall of Fame coach who brought three different programs to the Final Four, all of it will be overlooked because of how he finished his career.  Andrea Adelson of ESPN sees no way around his scandalous finale.

There can be no other way to view his 16 years with the Cardinals, no matter how vehemently both he and his defenders scream that he has been vilified and misjudged. Pitino harmed Louisville in many ways, staining its reputation, triggering multiple investigations and now this: a national title and 2012 Final Four appearance stricken from the record books.

It’s not just the stripper scandal that cost them a pair of Final Fours and a National Title banner.  It’s also Karen Sypher and the ongoing FBI recruiting investigation.

Pitino has not once taken responsibility for the sex parties that happened during recruiting visits and drew the NCAA to investigate. He also has denied any knowledge in the recruiting scandal that cost him his job. In fact, Pitino is suing the University of Louisville Athletic Association for $37.6 million for breach of contract after he was fired in October.

As much as Pitino won at Louisville, all those victories seem meaningless and his legacy forever tainted, especially now that the banner must come down.

Playing the denial card did Pitino no favors in his fall from grace.  In his dramatic fall, he took Louisville down with him.  One day Louisville may be able to recover.  You can’t say the same about Coach-2.



Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

54 Comments for ESPN: Louisville’s Fall from Grace Falls on Rick Pitino’s Shoulders

  1. Jiminy Crickets
    5:52 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    I hate the man, but its truly sad. There is no doubt he is one of the best COACHES in the history of the sport, and there’s no doubt this years UL team could have been top 5 with him. His ego killed him. I will always believe Pitinos fall was due to Calipari. Pitino was considering taking the Boston College job in 2008, and considered retirement in 2009. In comes Cal to UL in 2009, and when did hooker scandal occur?? 2010-2015. Pitino told his groupies, “I dont care what it takes, get recruits”. In comes the hookers and the rest is history. His ego killed him

    • Jiminy Crickets
      5:53 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Cal to UK of course

  2. Bobbum Man
    5:55 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Hard to feel bad for the guy, never once did he take any responsibility for any of it. Would have had much more respect for the guy had he just admitted it and gone off instead of lying constantly, denying everything and trying to sue the school he just screwed over

  3. gwhittle
    6:15 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Anyone who believes that he didn’t know about the strippers has never been around college athletics. These coaches know everything that happens with their players, especially if it is on campus.

  4. 4everUKblue
    6:17 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Hard to believe this is the same coach that brought Kentucky back from the ashes. It was the most exciting college basketball I can remember. We were the best conditioned team in the country, Arkansas’ 40 of hell was never a thing again after our press….it was smothering. He will never admit it but leaving Kentucky was the biggest mistake of his career.

    • G_Money
      6:55 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Agree. And I’m pretty sure he has admitted what a monstrous mistake it was to leave UK. I met him the first month he was in Lexington and he was a nice, charity-minded guy. It is sad to see someone screw up their life. I know. I’ve done it, too. And it hurts.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:02 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Yo G….I’m right there with you. I saw him give a speech at the old UL arena with a bunch of other motivational speakers and not one person moved while he was talking, I was so blown away by his command of the audience. I loved him as a coach while he was here. Also you’re right, not too long after he left he admitted it was his worst mistake, but I don’t think he would admit it anymore.

  5. mrcoconuts
    6:40 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    He brought UK back from the ashes. Took UL to the ashes. Circular….

    • BMT
      6:43 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Indeed! In a weird sort of way, Kentucky fans should not only be thankful for what he did for us but *also* for what he did to UL! 😉

  6. 4everUKblue
    6:54 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Kinda expected Code or Luether or even DennyC to come on and be defiant….disappointing.

    • 502CodeRed
      6:59 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Hey, buddy. I’m always game for the invite. Like I said before, the game happened and everyone saw it. I wont lose any sleep. Thanks for thinking about me.

    • runningunnin.454
      6:59 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Did you look under the nearest rock?

    • runningunnin.454
      7:00 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Uh oh, spoke too soon…that was fast.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:03 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      LMAO…..I missed you Code, but it never happened. Dry your tears.

    • runningunnin.454
      7:05 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      The Smithsonian turned down the 2013 banner…said it wasn’t real.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:06 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Hey Code, you listening to the radio show? It’s a hoot, a real banner (down) day.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:10 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      If a banner falls in an arena and no one is there….was there ever really a banner there?

    • runningunnin.454
      7:11 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      RED letter day.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:12 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      4ever – Well,UK’s fictional football championship never happened either but that doesn’t stop you guys from claiming it. All is good.

    • (Aixelsyd)0505
      9:19 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      ???hahaha cause that’s what they said.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:14 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Code I don’t care about the football championship but the UofLittleBro championship is a myth, much like bigfoot and unicorns.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:18 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      I know, 4ever. That’s why UK is everyone’s favorite one trick pony. It’s why you hate the SEC (because they don’t care bout basketball) and always focus on UofL and the ACC. I should have been a psychologist.

    • runningunnin.454
      7:25 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      A computer generated ranking by Jeff Sagarin listed UK as #1 and 1950 National Champions. UK beat Oklahoma head to head in the Sugar Bowl. The AP named the Sooners Champions prior to the Sugar Bowl; if any claim is fictional, it would be the Sooners’.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:25 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Code I’m not sure you should’ve been a psychologist but I’m damned sure you should see one on a regular basis. Oh and I love the SEC, rules college football and UofLittleBrothel still hasn’t won anything in football, even with the Heisman winner. In fact we beat your team on your home field with your Heisman winner. And I’m pretty sure the SEC was the best represented conference in the tourney last year. Thanks for playing.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:28 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      4ever – Please dont speak like you guys are actually contributing to the SEC’s success. No offense but you guys have been non factors for decades.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:31 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Code – You guys are in a conference with maybe two good teams the rest is weak, you even had to cheat to beat Wake. You would suck in the SEC.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:32 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Again UofLittleBrothel football has won nada, so don’t act like you’re program is any big deal.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:34 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      454- A computer generated ranking? Dude, it’s like UofL’s 2013 NC now. The NCAA never recognizedit so it didn’t happen. You can even check their official website.
      The good thing is we can both believe it happened. I even have the DVD.

    • (Aixelsyd)0505
      9:20 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink


    • (Aixelsyd)0505
      9:21 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Clever this ??

    • (Aixelsyd)0505
      9:21 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink


    • 4everUKblue
      7:36 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      And it’s funny how you always turn a basketball conversation to football during basketball season. But I get it, you’ve always been Little Bro and always will be.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:40 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      4ever – I was just stating that we can claim something that the NCAA doesn’t acknowledge. No reason to get mad.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:43 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Code buddy, I’m not mad, I’m celebrating a banner day. But you do really need to see things the way they are and not how you wish they were….Pitino and Jurich already tried that, didn’t work out too good.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:50 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      4ever – Agreed. I just checked my 2013 NC DVD and amazingly it still works. That Montrezl Harrel dunk was sick. Good night, buddy.

    • BonnieTayshaunBilly
      8:40 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Does NC stand for No Contest? Your 2013 No Contest DVD?

    • runningunnin.454
      7:59 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Doesn’t really take a computer; just common sense. If the AP poll had been taken after the Sugar Bowl, UK would have been declared champion. Fact is, Oklahoma had not lost a game in three years, and the voters considered the Sugar Bowl a forgone conclusion.
      We claim titles won on the field or court; unlike UNCheat that claims a 1924 Helms Basketball Title…we have seven of those; but, we don’t claim them.

    • 4everUKblue
      8:02 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Code, I know you really want to believe in fairy tales but no one has ever seen a unicorn. Maybe you can sleep with your dvd under your pillow to comfort you but it just a fairy tale, never happened. Sleep tight Code, take some tissues to bed with you.

  7. 4everUKblue
    7:12 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Matt needs to put a poll on KSR just for this guy.

    • 502CodeRed
      7:25 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Why,to ban me? I’m not insulting or attack people. I like this blog. There have been more stories today on UofL than on UofL sites. I like and appreciate that. Matt is doing a great job.

    • (Aixelsyd)0505
      9:25 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Just B E Z man

    • 4everUKblue
      7:29 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      No one wants you banned, you’re too much fun.

    • 4everUKblue
      7:29 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      I was hoping you were listening to the show.

  8. W F Reserve
    7:24 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    To help with the Yum Center debt they should have sold tickets to the banner lowering. Could have had a pep band and Katina herself could have been the Y (standing on her head, of course).

    • Skeps
      7:40 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      Hell, University 6 would steal that money too. Yum center is a disaster just like their program.

    • Bobbum Man
      8:20 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      We need an nba team ASAP, that place is gonna start hemorrhaging money with UL imploding and we’re gonna be on the hook for it

    • Skeps
      9:30 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

      We absolutely do. Pitino and University 6 have always been against it. Now with him gone there’s at least a little bit of resistance gone.

  9. mcp157
    7:55 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    As much of a slime ball I believe Pitino to be, I still think Jurich is more responsible. As soon as Rick got caught cheating on his wife and aborting a baby, he should have received at least a very strong probation. After the prostitute incident Jurich should have fired him, period. The AD is the decision maker in an athletic department. Jurich has the biggest responsibility not a hoops coach. Now let’s bring the NBA to Louisville and put the Cards in the back seat, like they were when the Colonels played in the 60s and 70s.

  10. Undeniable
    8:11 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Two quick points then I’ll hang up and listen…

    1) The NCAA does not recognize you, UofL, as the 2013 NC. Why? Because you cheated. You broke their rules and they happen to be the ones who created the tournament and hosted it. This silly, “I saw it happen” stuff is the moral equivilant of saying, “Hell, let’s let the Cavs play! And the Warriors! screw them dumb rules!” Why did they ‘come down on you so hard’? Because while you were appealing giving hookers to children, you were caught paying players.

    2) Speaking of giving hookers to children, if you can’t see how morally reprehensible that is (lookin’ at you Captain Sun Tan), if you can’t see how utterly repugnant and vile that is, then you’re a part of the problem, and you’re still ‘win at all costs’ – which, means you have no place in amateur sports. UNC helped dumb kids pass. You helped kids get laid, encouraged it in fact, paid for it. Disgusting and frankly you should be THROWING that banner back at the NCAA and asking them to burn it.

  11. (Aixelsyd)0505
    9:21 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink


  12. (Aixelsyd)0505
    9:27 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Plus KSR is literally both Cats & Cards

  13. big cat
    9:52 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    Hope there isn’t a paper trail of SLICK RICK’S tenure at UK.

  14. big cat
    9:54 pm February 20, 2018 Permalink

    I say make UL play in their former arena. Give the YUM Center to new NBA team.

  15. jameehkyfan
    8:36 am February 21, 2018 Permalink

    Hey code you may have the dvd but it’s been reclassified from a moment in sports history to (like pitino coming back to coach and having no knowledge), FICTIONAL. Sublime reads….used to be based on actual events that no longer exist. The banner is like the confederate flag now, I find it offensive and must be pulled, burned and stricken from history.