Notebook: KDF Night of the Future Stars

The trio of University of Louisville signees participating in the Kentucky Derby Festival Night of the Future Stars didn't disappoint the Cardinal fans in attendance at Floyd Central High School on Thursday evening.

A trio of soon-to-be Cardinals – Quentin Snider, Jaylen Johnson and Chinanu Onuaku – provided plenty of entertainment for the predominately Louisville crowd at Floyd Central High School for the Kentucky Derby Festival Night of the Future Stars on Thursday evening.

Snider Shines

Kentucky's Mr. Basketball didn't disappoint in the two events that he participated in.

The Louisville Ballard point guard teamed up with Ohio State bound forward Keita Bates-Diop in the 2-on-2 contest and led the way for the pairing. The two won their first two matchups, both decided on game-winning baskets by Snider, before falling in the finals to the pairing of Tarik Black (Illinois) and Trevon Bluiett (Xavier).

"I've been playing against Keita in AAU ball, so I knew what he could," Snider said. "The 2-on-2 is very competitive. I got tired at the end."

Snider also participated in the three-point contest and advanced to the finals which will be held during halftime of the Kentucky Derby Basketball Classic at Freedom Hall on Friday night.

Joining Snider in the three-point contest will be Max Hoetzel (Indiana), Robert Johnson (Indiana) and Brandone Francis (Florida).

Teammates Help

Incoming Cardinal Jaylen Johnson, a four-star forward from Ypsilanti, Mich., advanced to the dunk finals on Friday night and he had some help getting there.

The 6-foot-9, 215-pound wing was joined by his two future teammates for his first dunk attempt. Onuaku started the routine by bouncing the ball backwards between his legs to Snider who tipped the ball into the air where Johnson grabbed it and threw down a powerful dunk. His first attempt drew a 29 of 30 points from the three judges.

On his second attempt, he requested help from his mother, Janetta Johnson. His mom, who played college basketball at Wisconsin, was asked to bounce the ball off the backboard, but the two were unable to connect in time. Instead, with time expiring, he threw down a one-handed jam that scored high enough to help him advance to the finals.

Johnson will be joined by Isaac Copeland (Georgetown) and Devin Robinson (Florida) in Friday's dunk finals.

Memories

Growing up a Louisville fan, Snider attended many Cardinal games in their former home at Freedom Hall and now he has the opportunity to play in the historic building.

"When I was a little kid I used to go to Freedom Hall to watch the games," he said. "It's going to bring back memories."

Tickets Available

Tickets for the Kentucky Derby Basketball Classic are still available. They can be purchased online through Ticketmaster or at the Freedom Hall ticket office.


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