Blackshear Gives Cards Christmas Present

Wayne Blackshear didn't want to wait any longer. The five-star wing ended his recruitment on Christmas day.

Wayne Blackshear gave Rick Pitino a heck of a Christmas present.

On a day where majority of the United States is celebrating a holiday, Blackshear, a highly regarded junior, opted to make a verbal commitment to the University of Louisville.

Blackshear's father, Kevin Thomas, confirmed the commitment to

"It wasn't necessarily," Thomas said when asked if it was set up as a Christmas present. "We've just thought long and hard about it and it was just a matter of time. We just felt like it was the right time to go ahead and make a commitment."

Blackshear, No. 12 overall prospect in the 2011 class, had plenty of college interest, including offers from Marquette, Illinois, Texas, Kentucky, Kansas and Michigan State. So why Louisville?

"Coach P and obviously he enjoyed the visit," Thomas said. "He liked the assistant coaches and he felt good with the style of play. Wayne just liked it a lot. It's just where he wanted to end up."

"We were down for a visit early on and it went well," he added. "We felt like it was the best fit for Wayne and with Coach P's reputation and all we thought it was a great fit for him. We feel good about it."

The 6-foot-5, 185-pound wing prospect out of Chicago (Ill.) Morgan Park is in the midst of a monster year and recently put up a 42-point 18-rebound effort with Pitino and assistant coach Steve Masiello looking on.

Blackshear is now Louisville's fourth commitment for the 2011 class. He joins five-star center prospect Michael Chandler, as well as four-star prospect Zach Price and Ryan Taylor.

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