Louisville's 27-Point Loss to Pitt is Everything Wrong With the Kenny Payne Era

The Kenny Payne era has been a beatdown with some bright spots
Louisville v Pittsburgh
Louisville v Pittsburgh / Joe Sargent/GettyImages

Louisville was defeated soundly last Saturday night at Pittsburgh, where the Cardinals lost 59-86 in a game where the struggled in nearly every aspect of the game.

Louisville was down to 7 scholarship players, and one of them was Danilo Jovanovich. Is that is excuse to lose an ACC game? Yeah probably, but to lose by 27 to a bubble team like Pitt? That is unacceptable by Louisville basketball standards.

Louisville started the game with no scholarship guards, so it is was already going to be an uphill battle for Kenny Payne's squad, but to lose the way they did was baffling.

The Cardinals started the game down 2-11, but as they usually do, they fought back and eventually took a 18-17 lead with 8 minutes left in the first half. Pitt would then go on a 30-9 run to end the half.

Louisville was down ten at halftime, but that was still a deficit that they could come back from if things started to go their way in the 2nd half. However, that was not on Pitt's agenda.

Pitt's three point offense continued to operate flawlessly as they made 15 in the game and ended up shooting over 45% from the field in the game overall. The most defeating part of the loss was that Pitt's guard Blake Hinson ended up dropping 41 points on the Cardinals with 9 three point makes.

I understand Hinson is a good guard but there is no reason for him to as scored as much as he did, and Louisville seemed to have no answer for him from the perimeter.

Louisville ended up losing by 27-points, and didn't even crack 60 themselves.

The loss summed up what was wrong with the Kenny Payne era in a nutshell. Louisville looked lost on defense for most of the game, with bad rotations, getting beat of screens, not guarding up, and looking like they had no idea about any of the matchups at all. While the offense also struggled mightily, as Louisville shot just 8% from the perimeter, and most of their shots just looked like attempts to get to the free throw line.

While I will give Payne some leeway just based on the fact that Louisville has seemed to have had a historic amount of injuries this season from JJ Traynor, Dennis Evans, and Skyy Clark.

Louisville has been abysmal against competition under Kenny Payne, and something has to change. Losing to Pitt by 27 just drives the nail deeper and deeper into the coffin that Payne has seemingly built himself.