clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Friday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

When it's too hot in Louisville, roll to Park City and rep the Cards like Daniel Serpa.

I_medium More on VJ King's commitment from the man himself.

"I could tell as the visit went on, he started to grow to me," King said. "He would ask me to ride with him even when we had drivers. He would have side conversations with me and tell me stories and tell me about his relationship with Russ Smith. I could tell there was something different between us."

King's relationship with Louisville assistant Kenny Johnson factored into his decision making as well. Johnson has strong ties to both Paul VI and the AAU program King plays with - Team Takeover - as he used to coach for both.

"I talk to Kenny almost everyday," King said. "Out of everybody he was on me the hardest. We talked the most and most of the time it wasn't about basketball. I formed a really good relationship with him and I can really trust him. He was one of the driving forces in this commitment."

"I think at times when there's a preexisting relationship it's more difficult," Farello said. "It's a challenge because of the negative recruiting that goes on. I was really pleased how this played out because V.J. built his own relationship with the Louisville staff and coach Johnson, Pitino and the players. It was something that happened very natural. It was pretty natural and that's how this business should work."

King has had a strong spring playing on the Nike EYBL circuit for Keith Steven's Team Takeover group. King is averaging 14.2 points and 5.5 rebounds a game. King is known for skill and ability to score and he sees himself fitting into Louisville's uptempo style.

"They play very similar to the high school I'm at, which is very fast paced," King said of Louisville. "He said if I play defense, I'll get it to you on offense. We went through film where he would just let his players go."

"He has a such a great tool set," Farello told Scout. "It's about maximizing his tool set, which makes sense for him to go play for Pitino. He has playmaking ability, a natural ability to score and he can impact the game at both ends. He has a high basketball IQ. The most important thing with high-level players is do they understand what it takes to win. He understands what it takes to win."

I_medium Jeff Greer has more on new U of L walk-on Jay Anderson.

I_medium Here's some mic'd up Teddy Bridgewater for your Friday afternoon.

I_mediumfull look at the 2015 USA Basketball Men's U19 World Championship Team training camp roster, which features Chinanu Onuaku.

I_medium You're not my buddy, friend.

I_medium Junior swimmer and two-time NCAA champion Kelsi Worrell has been named to the  2015 Capital One Academic All-America Division I Women's At-Large Second Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Worrell, an exercise science major, has a 3.58 cumulative grade point average.

I_medium Montrezl Harrell talks about his experience with the draft process so far.

"You only get to do this one time, you only get to go through it once, so I'm just enjoying everywhere I go," Harrell said. "I feel like it's definitely getting us prepared for what it's going to be like during the NBA season, having road games and stuff like that. It's all just a big preparation for what's to come."

The draft itself is in two weeks, on June 25, and Harrell plans to head back home to North Carolina to watch with his family and, in particular, his grandmother.

"It's going to be fun," Harrell said. "I'm going to do an actual draft thing, either in a restrurant or a venue, just have my family and friends over and let them celebrate this huge step for me.

"They've been there since Day 1 with me. It's going to be great to get to see my grandmother, because she's definitely had such a big role in my life ... She started me on this path a long time ago, and it's paid off, so I definitely want to share this moment with her."

I_medium Cool shot.

I_medium U of L's wide receivers have looked the part during the offseason.

I_medium CBS takes a look at Louisville's best 2016 NFL Draft prospects.

Devonte Fields, DE, redshirt junior (6-4, 254, 4.74)
Fields will finally resurface on the field. He emerged as a freshman in 2012 at TCU with 18½ tackles for loss and 10 sacks, earning Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year honors. But he played just three games in 2013 due to injury and often found himself in the coaches' doghouse. Fields was dismissed from the team last offseason after his connection to a domestic violence incident and he wound up at Trinity Valley Community College last season before transferring to Louisville this past spring. He has two seasons of eligibility remaining, but if he plays anywhere close to the potential he showed as a true freshman in 2012, Fields will put himself back on the NFL radar. He is a good-sized athlete with the flexibility, agility and fight for the next level, but who knows what to expect from the fallen star in 2015.

Sheldon Rankins, DL, senior (6-1, 303, 4.92)
Lorenzo Mauldin was the top pass-rush threat for Louisville last season, but it was Rankins who led the Cardinals in both tackles for loss (13½) and sacks (eight) in 2014, also besting Mauldin with 53 total tackles. He added a pair of interceptions, a surprising number for a 300-pounder, and thrived under defensive coordinator Todd Grantham's multiple odd/even fronts. Rankins offers the power to line up in the "A gap" and take on multiple blockers, but also has the lateral quickness to stunt and loop around bodies to close on the pocket. He displays terrific effort and is a determined chaser to catch ball-carriers from behind away from the line of scrimmage. With the Louisville defense losing so many play-makers in the secondary, the defense will need Rankins to bring added pressure and stress the quarterback.

Brandon Radcliff, RB, redshirt junior (5-9, 214, 4.59)
The Cardinals' leading rusher last season despite only five starts, Radcliff led Louisville with 144 carries for 737 yards (5.1 average) and 12 touchdowns. He had to share the backfield with Dominique Brown and Michael Dyer in 2014, but it was clear Radcliff gave Louisville more pop on offense and with Brown and Dyer no longer on the roster, Radcliff is the clear-cut backfield weapon this year. He runs physical, tough and low to the ground, attacking defenders and looking to initiate contact. Radcliff is put together well for the position and makes it tough on tacklers to finish him off with his balance and natural run power while also flashing the foot quickness to make guys miss. He had only six catches last season, but averaged 14 yards per reception so his role as a receiver should grow in 2015.

I_medium Always love seeing these.

I_medium The All-American honors keep rolling in for Louisville baseball.

I_medium And finally, John Ramsey and I are on the air (right now!) from 3-6. We'll have VJ King's high school coach on at 4:30 to talk about why you shouldn't freak out about him not signing.