U of L media day: Notebook

The University of Louisville basketball team held a media day on Saturday at the KFC Yum! Center and the Cardinal Authority staff was in attendance. Here is a notebook full of items from the interviews.


Freshman guard Terry Rozier said he became a fan of the University of Louisville in the sixth grade when he watched a movie.

"Sebastian Telfair's documentary," Rozier said with a smile. "It was great. I loved the movie and everything about the college.

"I followed Louisville from then on. The more I learned about coach Pitino and I was getting older, I felt like I really wanted to play for this guy."

Telfair signed but didn't end up at U of L because he opted to turn pro out of high school, but Rozier's happy he made a movie.

"It's great how it all worked out," he said. "Red, black and white are my three favorite colors and everything. I just love it."


Rozier should have been a freshman on last year's NCAA title team, but after high school had to go to prep school for a year because of academics.

While he said watching on TV was not the same, Rozier said he's better because of attending a prep school for a year.

"Everybody said, ‘You could have had a ring'," Rozier said. "But you can't say that because things could have gone differently. It was great watching and I was really happy for the guys and just couldn't wait to get here.

"Maybe we'll get another one."


U of L senior Tim Henderson made two of the biggest shots of the championship run, three-pointers with the Cardinals trailing Wichita State in the semifinals.

The little-used Henderson was in the game because Kevin Ware was sidelined with his injury and the Cardinals were in foul trouble.

The former standout at Christian Academy said he has watched a replay of the two shots "quite a few times" in the offseason.

"Sometimes I will be in class and just pull out my phone and go to Youtube and watch those two shots," he said. "I still get chills seeing it.

"I want to do that again. It just makes me feel hungry."


One of the themes from the returning members of the 2012-13 NCAA Champions is that the new look Cardinals will be even better this season.

While still early in the preseason, fifth year center Stephan Van Treese said that the team has more more depth and athleticism.

"I think we'll be better than last year," Van Treese said.

The addition of guards Chris Jones, Terry Rozier and Anton Gill, along with the presence of redshirt freshman Mangok Mathiang and freshman Akoy Agau has created a group that expects to play an even more fast-paced tempo this season.

"We're more athletic and we'll move the ball around more. I think we'll have more fast breaks. We're deeper, so I think we'll have more people playing and I think our first group will be even better than last year. We have to replace to two pros, but we have great attitudes and very good leadership."


The departure of Peyton Siva and Gorgui Dieng to the NBA not only means that the team will need to replace 20 points, 13 rebounds and 8 assists a game, it also means that new squad will need to find additional leadership.

An on the floor leader last season, Russ Smith continues to fill the role. The senior immediately began working with the new trio of guards as soon as they arrived on campus.

"Russ will call us up to watch some video at any time," said freshman Terry Rozier. "I was very happy when he decided to come back. I'm learning a lot from Russ."

Fellow seniors Stephan Van Treese and Luke Hancock have also taken on the role.

"I'd say myself, Russ and Luke," Van Treese said. "All the guys listen to us on the court. It's been a learning process for the young guys learning the offense and how things work in our system."


Junior college transfer Chris Jones is from Memphis and had been recruited by the Tigers when he was a sophomore at Melrose High School.

Now Kentucky coach John Calipari was the Memphis coach then.

"Calipari recruited me my sophomore year," he said. "But then he left. I always wanted to go to Memphis, but Josh Pastner didn't recruit me. He recruited me for Calipari, then didn't recruit me like he did at first.

"So, I never thought about going to Memphis again."

Jones will get to play against Pastner and Memphis twice this season, including a homecoming on March 1.

"I can't wait," Jones said with a smile.


Freshman Anton Gill was asked who would be the biggest surprise player on the team this season:

"I don't want to say me, but I hope it's going to be me," he said with a smile.

Cardinal Authority Top Stories