Cardinal preview: Angel Nunez

Cardinal Authority will be featuring the players on the University of Louisville men's basketball roster this week. Next up is sophomore Angel Nunez, who is hoping to log more minutes this season for the Cardinals.

University of Louisville sophomore Angel Nunez admits last season was hard on him, mostly sitting on the bench for the Cardinals.

Nunez, a forward originally from the Bronx, N.Y., only played in 12 games and averaged just 4.6 minutes a game as a freshman.

"It was real hard," Nunez said. "It was tough. As a young person, sitting there and not playing too much can be frustrating.

"I had a lot of games where I just sat there. So, I knew I needed to do something."

The 6-foot-8, 200-pound Nunez went to work. In the offseason, he worked hard on conditioning and honing all of his skills.

"Angel is one guy that has gotten a lot better," junior guard Russ Smith said. "He's a lot better than he was last year."

When asked to pick the most improved player on the team, several players mentioned that Nunez could be in that conversation.

"I would say myself," Nunez said laughing. "Nah, I am just kidding. But I have improved in every facet of the game. I think I improved a little bit of everything.

"I am still working hard every day to make things even better."

U of L coach Rick Pitino said after one of the Red-White scrimmages that "Angel has come a long way but he still has a lot of things to work on."

Nunez, who had 13 points and 10 rebounds in the three scrimmages, played 16 minutes in the Pikeville scrimmage and scored three points. He will mainly be a role player for the Cardinal this season.

"I expect to be able to contribute to this team with my shooting ability and length," Nunez said. "I can play a number of spots on the floor.

"I want to be out there and be a spark. I think last year made me mature a lot and that's only going to help me."

Nunez is a popular guy with his teammates. He's apparently known as "Barack Obama" by his teammates.

"He does look like him" center Gorgui Dieng said. "I yell, ‘Obama'."


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