Despite strong showing, Myles will redshirt

Despite a strong showing in Friday's intra-squad scrimmage, Ellis Myles will red-shirt the coming season. Coach Pitino explains why the 6'7 Compton, CA native will sit the 2003-04 season.

Despite a strong showing in last Friday's Red-White scrimmage, Coach Pitino reiterated Thursday afternoon that 6'7 forward Ellis Myles will red-shirt this season.

"Here's the situation with Ellis," Pitino explained. "Ellis realizes that he's not in the right shape right now from a body fat standpoint, [and] he's coming off injury. So academically [and] socially he wants to redshirt. So we're going to do what the young man wants not what we need."

With Myles on the shelf, Pitino's concern becomes frontcourt depth and he's already devising ways to compensate for his team's frontcourt shortcomings.

"We realize we have a glaring weakness," Pitino said. "Until you get depth...we truly can't get after it [on the press] because we have fear of foul trouble. We can't sacrifice our big men. So right now we're working on containing the ball [so we] don't have to play five guards at the end of a game."

And while depth up front is troubling, Pitino likes the numbers he has in the backcourt.

"We have good depth at the one, two and three spots," Pitino said. "We just don't have any frontcourt depth. Generally you need six players in the frontcourt and we've got four. But if we had Ellis we wouldn't have a major problem in the frontcourt right now. But we don't have Ellis"

After having the chance to evaluate his team for more than a week at practice, Pitino says his team can only be so good this season, but envisions big things with a healthy Ellis Myles next year.

"This is a rebuilding team for us," Pitino said. "That doesn't mean we can't have a terrific season, we can. But we can only be so good this year and I know that for a fact. Next year the sky's the limit with a healthy Ellis Myles."

It's appears Dean is the solid choice to start the season at the point and Pitino says freshmen Brandon Jenkins and Brad Gianiny will battle to be the backup, at least early on.

"It's either going to be Brandon or Brad Gianiny," Pitino said. "We're going to play Prelue at mostly two guard."

Louisville will open the season Monday night with an exhibition games against EA Sports in Freedom Hall. Former Michigan State standout Mike Chappell and Duke star Ricky Price headlinefor EA Sports.

Of note, the starting line-up for Monday night's exhibition includes Luke Whitehead and Francisco Garcia at forward. Taquan Dean and Nate Daniels at guard. And Kendall Dartez is penciled in at center.

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