Newly hired Arkansas basketball head coach John Calipari is jumping right into his new opportunity after a long stint with Kentucky. Calipari is building his Razorbacks staff and has made a big move on Louisville basketball head coach Kenny Payne.

Calipari and the Arkansas basketball program are bringing Payne in as an Associate Head Coach, the team announced on X. The move garnered some intriguing social media reactions, many of which were dominated by Louisville fans. Here are a few comical responses:

Some X users called Payne a “bag man” and a poor coach. Others sent comedic warnings to Arkansas of the doom he would bring to the program.

It is no secret that some Louisville basketball fans hold resentment toward Kenny Payne to due their team's lack of success. Specifically, the 2023-24 season was tough for the Cardinals. The program finished the year with a 3-17 record and was last in the Atlantic Coast standings.

Nevertheless, Coach Payne was a respectable leader and brought a wealth of experience to the Cardinals. Payne joined Louisville in March of 2022 after a stint as an assistant coach with the New York Knicks. Before that, he spent 15 years as a college assistant or associate coach with both Oregon and Kentucky.

Payne was also a standout basketball player himself. He played college basketball at Louisville and played four seasons in the NBA. When Payne entered the 2022-23 season with Louisville, he was the only Division 1 men's basketball coach who was an NBA Draft pick and also won national championships as a player and a coach.

Louisville never made the NCAA Tournament during Payne's two years with the program. However, he played a role in helping Oregon and Kentucky reach a combined total of 10 March Madness appearances and four Final Fours.

Payne will be a great addition to John Calipari's staff.

John Calipari looks to elevate Arkansas basketball after impressive Kentucky tenure

Calipari spent 15 years with the Kentucky basketball program. After joining the Wildcats in 2009, he helped the team maintain its status as a national force. The Wildcats totaled 12 NCAA Tournament appearances including a championship in 2011-12.

Moreover, Calipari has helped coach some of the best basketball talent in the world during his time in Lexington. He left a memorable legacy for fans and players.

Despite historical success, Calipari's last season with Kentucky did not go as planned. The team finished the 2023-24 season with a 23-10 record and earned the No. 3 March Madness seed in the South region. Unfortunately, the Wildcats took a shocking 80-76 first-round loss to Oakland.

Still, Calipari retained a winning mentality, as evidenced by his post-tournament response to Kentucky's letdown loss.

“My standard is we're playing to play deep into the NCAA Tournament and compete for national titles. And win national titles. I wanted this job knowing that was the case. I love this job knowing that was the case,” Calipari said.

Calipari, Kenny Payne, and the rest of the Arkansas basketball staff will do all they can to ensure the team plays to the highest standard.