‘His positivity is contagious.’ U of L basketball moves Lexington native to key role.

·2 min read

A former high school basketball standout from Lexington has been promoted to director of men’s basketball operations at the University of Louisville.

Taylor Barnette, who starred at Lexington Christian Academy, has worked in a variety of positions for the U of L men’s basketball team the past three years.

“Taylor Barnette has earned his new position of director of operations through hard work,” head coach Chris Mack said in a news release. “His positivity is contagious, and both the staff and players connect with Taylor on and off the floor. Taylor has learned college basketball from the ground up during his three years with the program. He will be responsible for a host of administrative duties in addition to being the liaison for men’s basketball for compliance and academic services. I am confident that Taylor will continue to play a key part in Louisville basketball moving forward and we are thrilled to have him.”

Barnette served on the Cardinals’ staff over the past year as director of player development after two seasons as a program assistant. His duties included assisting in opponent scouting, game preparation and assisting in on-campus recruiting efforts. He joined the Cardinals’ staff in 2018 after working with the NFL’s Tennessee Titans in suite sales and service.

“I am extremely grateful for this new role and for Coach Mack giving me this incredible opportunity,” Barnette said. “I am eager to serve our players, our staff, and Card Nation at this amazing university!”

Barnette was born and raised in Lexington and got his start in basketball as a ball boy in Rupp Arena. He went on to star at Lexington Christian Academy, finishing his career second on the school’s all-time scoring and assists lists and set the school record with 226 career three-point baskets. He earned Herald-Leader All-State Second Team honors as a senior.

Barnette played one season at Virginia (2012-13) before finishing his collegiate career at Belmont. He scored 1,085 points, including 240 three-pointers, in his college career. He averaged 11.3 points as a senior as Belmont posted a 23-7 record, and he helped the Bruins to a 65-28 mark in his three seasons there while starting his last 85 consecutive games.

As a sophomore, Barnette made a game-winning three-pointer with 3.2 seconds remaining against Murray State in the championship game of the 2015 Ohio Valley Conference Tournament, sending the Bruins to the NCAA Tournament. He was honored as the MVP of that tournament.

Barnette earned a bachelor’s degree in corporate communications and a minor in Christian leadership in 2017 from Belmont, where he earned recognition on the OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll for three years. He earned a master’s degree in sport administration from U of L in 2020.