Tello Palacios signs LOI

The University of Louisville basketball program held a news conference on Friday to announce that Tello Palacios has signed his Letter of Intent. <p> <b>UPDATED</b> Additional comments from U of L head coach Rick Pitino added.

At a news conference on Friday afternoon, U of L head coach Rick Pitino announced that 6-foot-8 Tello Palacios has signed his Letter of Intent.

"We're obviously very excited we got these papers back," U of L head coach Rick Pitino said in reference to Palacios' letter of intent. "It's not an easy thing to do to get a letter of intent from Colombia. So we're very excited.

"We are extremely excited to have Tello in our program," Pitino said. "At the high school level he reminds me of Jamal Mashburn in many ways. He has Jamal's basketball I.Q. and really makes people better with his understanding of the game. As a freshman, he will see significant minutes and be an impact player right away."

Pitino said the process and the competetion for Palacios' commitment and eventual signature was fierce and drawn out.

"It was a long battle recruiting him," Pitino said. "It was a long process and we're happy that he's joining us because he's much needed with our recent situations with Brian Johnson and Donta Smith."

With Johnson's pending knee surgery and Smith's decision to declare for the NBA Draft, Pitino is counting on all four of his current signees, and possibly one or two more spring recruits, to make an immediate impact next season.

"This is a very solid recruiting class," Pitino explained. "They're going to all have to play. Even Terrance [Farley] right now is going to have to have an extremely productive summer because we're going to need him."


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