Everyone wishes they could be introduced in a stadium full of cheering fans with the perfect song blaring over the PA. Which got me to wondering what songs would represent the Louisville Cardinals basketball players the best if they were introduced in the KFC Yum! Center individually.
As a fan of both music and the Louisville Cardinals, I wanted to pick a song that represented each player's personality and playing style for them to be introduced to. Here is a list of each Louisville starting five's intro songs.
"Hard Knock Life" by Jay Z
This song applies to Peyton Siva on the court and off the court. On the court Siva has had to deal with several injuries in his four-year career at Louisville. He has sustained a couple of concussions and has had several ankle issues. Last season Siva had to wear an MMA helmet during practices to keep his head safe.
He even gets hard criticism from college basketball writers who say he is too short and not good enough for professional basketball, at least not in the United States.
The senior point guard has also had a hard life. Siva grew up in a bad neighborhood in Seattle and had to deal with a father who suffered from alcohol and drug addiction. Once, when he was 13, Siva drove around looking his father, whom he found strung out on drugs with a gun in his lap. Peyton was able to talk his dad out of killing himself.
But with all of Siva's hardships, he keeps a smile on his face and carries himself on and off the court better than anyone in college basketball.
Peyton is one of the top three players as people I've ever coached in my life—this is pro, college, 35 years. He is just a remarkable young man with everything he's been through in his life. He is just such a special young man, so considerate, so concerned about others, so willing to do what anybody asks him to do.
"Smooth Criminal" by Michael Jackson
There are not many players who deserve a Michael Jackson song, but Russ Smith has earned it. Smith, like the song, is in attack mode from the very beginning.
The 6'0" junior has become one of the best on-the-ball defenders, and he steals the ball so smoothly it is almost criminal. He is currently ranked 14th in the nation in steals, averaging 2.6 a game.
As reported by Pat Forde of Yahoo! Sports, Pitino had this to say about Smith: "He’s out of his freakin’ mind."
Most criminals belong in jail and the insane ones go to an asylum, but Russ Smith belongs on a basketball court.
"Basketball" by Kurtis Blow
This song could apply to any player on the Louisville basketball team, it could apply to any basketball player really.
But Wayne Blackshear is a true basketball player.
He has the perfect physicality of a basketball player at 6'6" and 230 pounds. Blackshear also has all the skills that you would want in a basketball player. He can shoot, rebound, defend and has an amazing basketball IQ.
After injuring both shoulders last season, Blackshear has struggled to get back to 100 percent. When he does, everyone will see that he is a basketball player in its truest form.
"I've got the power" by Snap
Chane Behanan has the power. At 6'6" and 250 lbs., Behanan has the ability to use his strength to out-rebound anyone in the country and go up for a powerful dunk.
The song is also very upbeat and has the ability to put one in a good mood. Behanan has the same affect, he can energize his teammates and keep a smile on his face no matter the circumstances in a game.
"Papa don't take no mess" by James Brown
Gorgui Dieng has become one of the most dominating centers in college basketball. After watching Dieng add almost 50 pounds since coming to Louisville, NBA teams are drooling at the opportunity of drafting the 6'11" big man.
But Dieng's father is not impressed with any of his sons talents. You see, Gorgui is from the African country Senegal and was sent to America to get a great education, and that is exactly what his father, Momar, expects him to get. Basketball is just an afterthought.
"If you tell my dad about basketball," Dieng told Eamonn Brennan of ESPN, "he just ignores you. He don't care. All he cares about is how I do in school."
If Gorgui graduates this year, there is a chance you might see him in the NBA draft. But do not be surprised if you see him in a Louisville jersey next season.