Blackshear anticipates larger role

University of Louisville forward Wayne Blackshear started 34 games during the program's NCAA Championship winning run last season. The junior expects to fulfill a larger role as the Cardinals defend their title.

Following an injury plagued freshman season that limited him to just 15 game appearances, Wayne Blackshear started 34 games, averaging 20 minutes of action, for the 2013 NCAA Champions last season.

The Chicago native averaged 7.6 points and 3.1 rebounds a game and his 45 three-pointers was the third highest total on the team, trailing only Russ Smith and Luke Hancock.

As the 6-foot-5 wingman prepares for his junior campaign, he also needs to welcome the added responsibility of being one of the team leaders.

"I'm an upperclassmen now," Blackshear told Cardinal Authority. "I'm not one of the young guys anymore. I'm a veteran now. It's gone by so fast already. I do see myself taking on a bigger role this year."

A former McDonalds All-American, Blackshear and his teammates have started preparations to defend their NCAA title. The tasks of defending and chasing for a repeat are difficult, but it is something that the team is looking forward to facing.

"Coach has talked to us about that," said Blackshear. "We know how hard it is to repeat. We also know that we have a target on our back this year, but we are up for the challenge."

Blackshear appreciates the pressure of defending a title and he believes that it will only help the 2013-14 Cardinals to improve and be battle tested prior to the NCAA Tournament.

"It just makes it that much better for us as competitors," he said. "How we handle it will show how great of a team we are."


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