Hancock working out 'a little stress thing'

University of Louisville senior Luke Hancock missed the first Red-White scrimmage because of an ankle issue. Hancock said he's likely to make a return in a couple of weeks but said the injury is "fine." Cardinal Authority has the latest.

Luke Hancock, the Most Valuable Player of the Final Four, wasn't on the court for the University of Louisville in the Red-White scrimmage on Saturday.

But Hancock said he's not far from returning.

The 6-foot-6 senior has an ankle issue and said he's still about a week or two away from returning to practice. U of L coach Rick Pitino said, "he'll be fine, we just want to take our time and not rush him."

"It's been a little stress thing that happened over a while," Hancock said of the injury. "It's fine. But just so I'm 110 percent the entire year, (the coaches) want to keep me out another week or two. I will be back then."

Hancock said he "should be fine," this season but isn't expected to play in any of the three Red-White scrimmages. He could return on Oct. 29 in the Cardinals' first exhibition game of the season against Kentucky Wesleyan.

Hancock averaged 8.1 points a game last season for the Cardinals, scoring 20 in the NCAA Final Four win over Wichita State and then 22 in the national championship game win against Michigan.

A former transfer from George Mason, Hancock is one of the captains on the team this season and said he's staying in "very good shape," physically.

"I've been shooting a lot of jumps shots and working out," Hancock said. "I swam 7,000 yards in the pool, so I am in good shape. They're just holding me back.

"It's fine and right now the place I can be most useful is being a vocal leader. I'm trying to make sure guys are doing the right thing, being a leader."

Pitino said he was going to treat Hancock "like an old, veteran pitcher."

"I don't need him in there right now," Pitino said. "We want to make sure he's healthy in March and April, so we'll take our time with him."

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