According to every sports-related Internet site from Louisville to Indianapolis and other major basketball capitals, Kenny Johnson is on the verge of becoming an assistant coach on Coach Rick Pitino’s staff at the University of Louisville, replacing Kevin Keatts, now at North Carolina Wilmington.Kenny

The recruiting groupies are beside themselves, expecting his arrival to portend great things,  a boost in the number star-studded players committing to UofL in the immediate future.

They’re raving about his recruiting abilities, an AAU background that includes NIKE connection, and his close ties with numerous recruits in the talent-rich Washington, D.C. and the Baltimore areas. Plus his success at Indiana University since 2012. Coming to an Adidas school to ply his trade.

The indianapolis Star said Monday that Johnson was  “considered one of the Big Ten’s – if not the country’s – best recruiters, Johnson has been instrumental in helping IU secure players like Troy Williams, Noah Vonleh, Stanford Robinson and Robert Johnson.” The newspaper also reported that IU was “ready to work to keep him.”  Louisville apparently won out over Indiana and Maryland, which also wanted Johnson.

The deciding factor may have been Rick Pitino’s long history of transforming good assistants into head coaches. Enjoy Johnson and his recruiting success for a couple of years or until he gets his own program.

Here’s a video of Johnson shortly after he joined the Indiana staff in 2012:

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By Charlie Springer

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