JONES SET TO FILL THE VOID
Northwest Florida State College point guard Chris Jones signed with the Cardinals and U of L head coach Rick Pitino said the 5-foot-10 Jones would be Peyton Siva's replacement next season.
Jones is the No. 1 junior college player in the country and Pitino said he is experienced and good enough to "fill the void."
"It would be a difficult (position) for most but not Chris," Pitino said. "He's a special player and I'm not sure I've ever recruited a kid who hates to lose as much as he does. His coach tells a story about him in high school when they were getting beat and he told his teammates to go stand over there. He said, ‘I'm going to win this thing.' And that's what he did.
"We needed somebody more mature to come in and replace Peyton and that's what we got. He's a unique young man."
Jones was ranked No. 67 as a high school senior and then became a first-team All-American last season at Northwest Florida. The 2012 Panhandle Conference Player of the Year was the first freshman named POY in the conference in 15 years. He averaged 18 points a game for the JUCO national runner-ups.
GILL READY TO BE A CARDINAL
Hargrave Military Academy guard Anton Gill, a native of Raleigh, N.C., was the first player to commit to U of L in the '13 class.
Gill had been committed for almost a year and said he feels "blessed" to be able to get to sign with the Cardinals.
"Finally," Gill said. "My whole thing was that I can't wait to be playing for one of the best coaches in the country next year. I'm just so excited."
Gill averaged 18.1 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists a game at Ravenscroft and said he's "struggled a bit" since transferring to Hargrave.
In 10 games, Gill is averaging 21 points and seven rebounds and according to coach A. W. Hamilton is "getting adjusted."
"I've had a couple of good games, but it's a long season," Gill said. "(Louisville) wants me and keep getting stronger and keep on with my game. I'm working on my pull-up jumpers and floaters. It's not as easy getting to the basket."
PITINO SAYS ROZIER UNDER RATED
Hargrave guard Terry Rozier, who is originally from Cleveland, has now signed with the Cardinals two years in a row.
Rozier didn't make the grades last season but on Wednesday signed financial aid papers and plans on enrolling in the fall.
"We liked him from the first day we saw him," said Pitino. "He's always been a fan of ours and we have always been a big fan of his."
Rozier is ranked No. 68 by Scout.com, but Pitino said he should be higher. Rozier is averaging 24 points, 7.4 assists and 6.4 rebounds through 10 games at Hargrave after averaging 25.6 last season at Shaker Heights, Ohio.
"I've seen Terry play a lot and he can play," Pitino said. "There's no question he's a top-20 player in the country. He's a prolific scorer and can play two positions. He's going to be a really good player for us."
QUOTE OF THE DAY
Pitino on his overall assessment of the class.
"We don't pay any attention to the rankings," Pitino said. "We wanted each of these kids the first time we saw them. To me, this class is as good as it gets."