Louisville names Duke Smith’s former aide to Cardinals staff
Louisville coach Kenny Payne has named former Duke staffer Nolan Smith as an assistant coach, his first hire since becoming the Cardinals’ head coach nearly three weeks ago.
Smith’s hiring comes nearly a week since he informed the team of his departure after one season as Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski’s assistant and six overall with the Blue Devils. . The son of former Louisville star Derek Smith, who played on the Cardinals’ NCAA championship team in 1980, was introduced at a press conference on Monday afternoon and said: “It means the world to me.”
Payne described Smith as “one of college basketball’s brightest young stars” in a statement. The new coach added: “His father is looking down on us with a smile as his blood and spirit run through this program again.”
Smith helped Duke win three straight Atlantic Coast Conference championships from 2009-2011 and the NCAA men’s basketball title in 2010 after earning Most Outstanding Player honors at the South Regional in Houston. He was a consensus first-team All-American and 2011 ACC Player of the Year.
Smith spent 2016-18 as a special assistant at Duke before working three seasons as director of basketball operations and player development and becoming an assistant last season.
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