David Padgett stepped into an unenviable situation as Louisville’s interim coach after Rick Pitino was forced out just days prior to the start of practice and currently owns a 21-13 record, but that won’t be enough to bring him back apparently.
According to a report from Yahoo! Sports’ Pete Thamel updating all the top jobs currently open in college basketball, Padgett will not be retained and Louisville’s pursuit of a new coach is centered on Xavier’s Chris Mack.
The Musketeers are currently a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament while Louisville is still playing in the NIT, so there might not be movement from either side until their respective seasons conclude. But Thamel makes it clear that he’s the top priority in the coaching search at the moment.
Mack has been the coach at Xavier since 2009, leading the Musketeers to the NCAA Tournament in all but one season (2013). He’s made three Sweet Sixteens and an Elite Eight and is probably in the midst of his best chance of earning a Final Four bid as the top seed in the West Region.
As a Xavier graduate and long-time Xavier assistant prior to becoming their head coach, luring Mack away might be a difficult proposition. However, Louisville obviously offers a chance at higher-profile basketball with their history and their membership in the ACC and can also probably offer a considerable raise over the nearly $1.7 million he’s making at Xavier.
Thamel also mentions UCLA’s Steve Alford and Purdue’s Matt Painter as possibilities if the Cardinals miss out on Mack, though with Painter they’d be facing an even larger uphill climb trying to lure Painter away from his alma mater and a school that is already in a top college basketball conference.
As for Padgett, Thamel thinks that he’s earned a chance at a full-time job somewhere and considers him a worthy candidate for Eastern Kentucky or Missouri State.
The post David Padgett reportedly out and Louisville honing in on Chris Mack appeared first on Diehards.
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