U of L's Johnson 'different' than Harrell

University of Louisville sophomore Jaylen Johnson is expected to step into the role left by Montrezl Harrell with the Cardinals next season. Johnson said he's up to the task but noted that he's a "very different" player than the All-American Harrell.

The University of Louisville has a major hole to fill next season with the loss of Montrezl Harrell, who left after his junior season to put his name into the NBA Draft.

U of L coach Rick Pitino believes Jaylen Johnson can fill that void.

And Johnson, a 6-foot-9 sophomore from Ypislanti, Mich., is confident in his abilities.

"I feel like I came a long way last year," Johnson said. "I think I went from a player who came in late to one that coach knew he could put into the game and trust to get the job done. I came a long way.

"A lot of that was because of Trez and how he made me work."

Johnson said he's like Harrell in that he "wants to dunk everything," but he also wanted to make sure folks know that he's not going to be the same type of player that Harrell was at U of L.

"I feel like I'm ready to get in there," Johnson said. "I'm different than Trez. I have a motor and I want to dunk everything, but I can do other things as well on the perimeter. I just want to use what I learned last year and come out better."

Johnson got a late start last year because of eligibility issues but came on late in the season.

He said he was in better shape and by the NCAA Tournament was able to be put in and make plays. He averaged 4.7 points a game in 24 games for the Cardinals as a freshman.

"I'm ready to do more," Johnson said. "I'm excited."


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