Trent Johnson was ready for call from Louisville

Trent Johnson is one happy man today, having landed a job as an assistant coach with the University of Louisville basketball program. Happily giving up the routine of a beloved grandfather in retirement to return to the game he loves.

To work with David Padgett, a person he has known and respected for a long time. Johnson’s son Terry played on the same team with Padgett at Reno High School when Johnson was head basketball coach at University of Nevada.

David Padgett needed a seasoned professional and Trent Johnson was the logical choice (Cindy Rice Shelton photos).

Padgett describing Johnson as a person be will be able to lean on and his players can relate. “I think under the circumstances, I don’t think that we could find a better hire,” he said.

“I accept the responsibility to David, his staff, the players on this team to continue anyway possible to sustain the standard of excellence that Louisville basketball is all about,” said Johnson.

“My agenda is come in and help him morning, noon and night to be the best possible team, the best possible players they can be socially, academically and athletically.

“I’m ready to do anything Coach wants me to do.”

Johnson had been out the game for a year since he was fired at TCU but said he wasn’t ready to be retired. “I’m a lifer,” he said. “Basketball is a big part of my life. I was going to be in somebody’s gym sooner or later.”

He has a lifetime won-lost record of 236-88 after coaching stints at Nevada, Stanford, LSU and TCU. He also served as an assistant at Utah, Washington, Rice and Stanford.

So Johnson has been around, quite a bit, experienced more than a few ups and downs. Happy to be at UofL. “It’s Louisville,” he said, acknowledging the UofL as one of the sport’s elite programs.

Author: Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, as well as a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.