This is a little overdue, but I told myself I'd actually get this piece out. I've been moving over the last few days, and I guess, it's better late than never.
Tuesday afternoon the New York Knicks reportedly hired Kentucky's Kenny Payne to an Assistant Coaching position under Tom Thibodeau. Leaving Kentucky with big shoes to fill, John Calipari called up his former assistant and current Indiana assistant coach Bruiser Flint.
A little background info:
Bruiser Flint was an assistant coach under John Calipari at UMass from 1989-1996, then followed into the Head Coach once John Calipari went to the New Jersey Nets. Bruiser Flint spent the next five season as the University of Massachusetts Head Coach, before accepting the Head Coaching job at Drexel in 2001.
Bruiser Flint would find some success at Drexel, becoming the winningest coach in program history throughout the following 15 seasons. He made the NIT five times, and won the CAA Regular Season Championship in 2012, barely missing an NCAA Tournament birth. On March 7, 2016, Flint was fired from Drexel, having the most wins under his belt all-time.
Bruiser then accepted an Assistant Coaching under Archie Miller at Indiana in 2017, where he worked all the way up until leaving for Kentucky on Tuesday afternoon.
2 Tidbits about Bruiser Flint:
At Drexel, Bruiser Flint became the first coach to go into the KFC Yum! Center and get a win, taking down No. 20 Louisville who were on an eight game winning streak. Besides upsetting the Cardinals, what made the night so memorable was one of his postgame comments: “I told them,`We’re not playing against Kentucky. We can win this game.’” Kentucky fans of course took that quote and ran with it, enjoying the absolute shot at the University of Louisville.
When Kentucky won their 2,000th game in program history, if you remember, Drexel was the opposing team, coached by Bruiser Flint. Kentucky won in an absolute blowout, 88-44, but it's cool to know he's already in the record books in Lexington.
Kentucky made the hire within the hour of Kennys announcement, so it seems that it has been in the works for a while now. While KP seems irreplaceable, Flint knows what to expect under John Calipari's reign, and I'm excited to see what he can accomplish in his time here.