Louisville keep up with top JUCO prospect

University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino and his staff are searching for a few inside players to add to the Class of 2014. The Cardinals are in the mix with a bunch of the top high school players in the country and are also looking at a few of the top junior college players in the country.

A three-star prospect out of high school, Cinmeon Bowers was a top player from the state of Wisconsin and participated on the Playground Elite AAU team.

But he had to go the junior-college route as a result of not taking some of the correct courses during high school.

Bowers would have been a member of the Class of 2012 but is spending two years at Chipola, Fla., Junior College and has now become one of the nations top junior-college recruits for this recruiting class.

"It's all worked out for me," Bowers said. "I toned up a lot, I've been working hard with my trainer and have just gotten a lot better."

Bowers, who had some interest during high school, is now getting attention from a bunch of the top schools all across the country.

The 6-foot-7, 260-pound Bowers said Memphis and Florida State have been on him the longest, but schools like Louisville, DePaul, Pittsburgh, Connecticut and a bunch of others have called to try and get into the mix.

"I'm wide open right now and it's been fun," Bowers said. "It's been kind of cool to do (the recruiting thing) again because I'm a better player now."

Bowers was solid last week at the Mullen's Top 100 JUCO Camp in St. Charles, Mo., in front of U of L assistant coach Mike Balado. He said he received a call from U of L coach Rick Pitino on Monday night.

"He said he was excited about me," Bowers said. "He asked if I was interested in Louisville and said he wanted to get me there for a visit."

When asked if Louisville was a school that intrigued him, Bowers responded by saying: "Yes, big time."

Bowers has been compared to current U of L payer Chane Behanan, except with a little more skill, and Chipola coach Patrick Blake – a former manager at U of L for Pitino – said he "would agree with that assessment."

"Coach Pitino is an aggressive coach, I can't find the right word now for him," Bowers said. "But I like that. I want a coach who is going to push me.

"I'm wide open right now."

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