Louisville basketball legend Russ Smith returned to the Yum Middle on Saturday to obtain an honor of a lifetime — having his No. 2 jersey retired.
Smith was greeted to a standing ovation from the Cardinal trustworthy, and gave an emotional speech throughout his halftime ceremony.
Followers actually acquired excited when former Louisville coach Rick Pitino confirmed up on the massive display screen to congratulate Smith on his honor. The sector erupted in cheers as Pitino mirrored on the kind of participant and man Smith was throughout his time in Louisville.
“I don’t I’ve ever laughed as a lot in teaching a participant,” Pitino mentioned. “I don’t assume I’ve ever cried as a lot in teaching a participant. And definitely I don’t assume I may love a participant any greater than I like you. Congratulations, son.”
Pitino coached Louisville from 2001-2017 and is the one coach to win NCAA nationwide titles with two completely different groups (the College of Kentucky in 1996 and the College of Louisville in 2013).
Pitino’s 2013 title, nevertheless, was vacated by Louisville after an NCAA investigation into improper advantages for athletes.
Smith was a three-star prospect when Louisville snagged his dedication, and although undersized, his presence was enormous for the Cardinals throughout his run from 2010 to 2014.
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Smith was chosen No. 47 total within the 2014 NBA Draft and performed 27 profession NBA video games and has since performed earlier than taking part in his most up-to-date video games abroad and within the NBA’s G-League (previously known as the D-League).
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The Yum Middle was stuffed with gratitude for the previous star, however so was Twitter, as a number of followers, Louisville legends, former teammates and buddies congratulated Smith on his illustrious collegiate profession.
Different Louisville legends like Artis Gilmore and Darrell Griffith made an look within the Yum Middle to honor Smith.
Former Athletic Director Vince Tyra provides shoutout
Smith’s G-League workforce the Mad Ants present love
Yum Middle, followers get emotional
This text initially appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: Former Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino celebrates Russ Smith