Pitino remains optimistic about Amir Johnson

Louisville coach Rick Pitino updated the status of recruits Amir Johnson and Clarence Holloway Wednesday morning, and explained why he thinks a new arena won't be built while he's the coach at U of L. The Cardinals coach also expressed his doubts about the institution of an NBA age-restriction, and discussed Francisco Garcia's NBA Draft status.

Louisville coach Rick Pitino re-iterated Wednesday morning what he said during a local autograph stop last week about the status of his top recruit, 6-9 Amir Johnson.

"I think if he gets his grades he'll definitely be coming," Pitino said.

Pitino again didn't sound optimistic about the chances of 7-0 Clarence Holloway from Chicago being at U of L next season.

"Clarence I'm not too sure about," said Pitino. "He's got to battle grades as well as delusions."


Pitino said Holloway is battling
NBA delusions.
Those delusions, of course, are of the NBA variety. Apparently those close to Holloway, who scored just two points in the Kentucky Derby Festival Basketball Classic last month, have provided unrealistic expectations to the Harlan Academy star that he might be selected in this summer's NBA draft.

Pitino not optimistic about NBA age-limit Pitino didn't sound optimistic about the NBA's chances of instituting any significant age restrictions in the league's new collective bargaining agreement this summer.

"I personally don't think it will ever be put in," Pitino said of an NBA age-limit. "Just speaking with agents, they're going to fight it big-time, and so is the players association."

However, Pitino did seem to indicate his belief that some sort of age-limit will be agreed upon, even though it's effectiveness in getting top high school players onto college campuses in the future will be minimal.

"I think they may settle on age 19, which will have young people go to prep school for a year," added Pitino. "So it doesn't accomplish much."

Workouts important for Garcia Pitino said that Francisco Garcia's upcoming workouts with NBA teams will be important to solidify his NBA Draft stock this summer.

"Everything I read is that he'll go in the mid-to-late 20's," said Pitino. "If he has good workouts, he could move up, and if he doesn't he'll go the other way."

Pitino confirmed that Garcia has hired representation, who according to sources is San Francisco sports-agent Aaron Goodwin.

Pitino doesn't expect new arena in near future Pitino said he doesn't expect to be coaching the Cardinals by the time a new arena is agreed to, and constructed.

"My own feeling is that I'll be doing what you guys (media) are doing by the time it's built," said Pitino.

Why does Pitino think the process will move slowly?

"I think the way things move, and the way they argue their points and don't understand the primary goal of all of this," Pitino said. "I think people have too many agendas, and by the time it's settled on I'll be Kenny Klein's assistant."


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