UofL Ready For Cincy; Chris Jones Returns From Injury
01/29/2014 01:59 PM
- Time Off: The Cards had eight days off between last week’s win over South Florida and tomorrow night’s game.
While the down time gave the teama chance to rest and heal, there are a few traps teams can fall in, but head coach Rick Pitino said he thinks his team will be fine tomorrow.
He said, “You don’t want your timing or your focus to be off. I don’t think it has been with these guys.
- Returning From Injury: Chris Jones is back to 100 percent and practicing well, according to Pitino. While freshman Terry Rozier has done a great job stepping into the starting point guard role, Pitino said the team needs Jones back desperately. “He’s an explosive scorer, a hard working guy. We escaped while he was out.” Jones will not start, but Pitino said not to worry. It’s just team policy that a player returning from injury doesn’t start.
- Succeeding Off The Bench: Initially, the plan to bring Wayne Blackshear off the bench was to keep him out of foul trouble and allow him to play more minutes. As Pitino and Card Nation discovered, more minutes mean more points. In 17 games as a starter, Blackshear averaged 9.1 points per game. In the three games coming off the bench, he’s averaging 16 points in 27 minutes per game. The key, according to Pitino, is that Blackshear is more aggressive because he knows he’s not in foul trouble, so he’s also getting more minutes.
- End of an era: Tomorrow night marks the last time Cincinnati will come to the Yum! Center as the two storied rivals head to difference conferences next year. Rick Pitino said, “I like all big games. There’s no margin for error in this game.” The Cards and Bearcats have played 97 times with Louisville leading the series 55-42.
No. 12 Louisville tips off against No. 13 Cincinnati tomorrow night at 7 p.m. Eastern and can be seen on ESPN on Time Warner channel 31 or 923.
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