Farley will play key role against Tigers

Terrance Farley will play a key role for Louisville Monday night against 6-9 Clemson forward Akin Akingbala. Farley had 12 points and 6 rebounds against Delaware State, and the Cards will need another strong performance from the 6-10 sophomore.

Terrance Farley might very well be the key for Louisville when they face Clemson Monday night in the NIT second round.

Louisville has played well since the 6-10 sophomore replaced David Padgett in the starting lineup late last month. The Cardinals are 3-3 with Farley in the lineup, and his play against Clemson's Akin Akingbala, a talented 6-9 forward, will be critical for the Cardinals chances of success.

Akingbala averaged nearly 12 points per game this season, and led the Tigers past Louisiana Tech last week with a 16 point, 11 rebound effort.

"We're going to have some trouble there because he's like what you'd expect from Terrance Farley as a junior and senior," Pitino said. "He's got good offensive moves in the low-post and he rebounds well. He's somebody we're concerned about."

Farley enjoyed a solid outing last Friday in the Cardinals 71-54 win over Delaware State, finishing with 12 points and six boards in just 22 minutes of action. Still, Louisville coach Rick Pitino wasn't pleased that the defensive-minded Farley didn't make a huge impact with his ability to block shots.

"Terrance is still his own worst enemy," said Pitino. "The last game he didn't have a blocked shot and he should have had seven or eight. He's his own worst enemy because he doesn't play every possession to his strengths. That's something he just has to learn."

What are those strengths?

"His strength's shot blocking, dunking and running the floor," Pitino said.

With Padgett expected to return to the starting lineup next season, Farley likely will play a key role in 2006-07 off the bench. That's why Pitino said the experience of playing in the NIT against quality opponents is so important for Farley's continued development as a player.

"This (NIT) is invaluable to him," Pitino said. "I've always said Terrance Farley could be a good basketball player. Once he learns to just play every possession as significant and important he could (have) an impact on defense every time down the floor."

Senior guard Taquan Dean said he's noticed increased confidence in Farley since Padgett's season ended prematurely.

"With David being out, it's sort of been a blessing for Farley because he's been forced into a role that he's not used to playing," Dean said. "He's playing well and a lot of people wouldn't have expected that from him."

He's going to be good for years to come," Dean added. "It's just confidence. When a player gets confidence the sky is the limit. He's starting to see what hard work does for him."

In the Cardinals past six games, Farley has averaged more than 5 points. And while he's shown ability on the offensive end of the court, defense continues to be his bread and butter.

"He doesn't want to be an offensive basketball player," Pitino said. "He has the ability to play (offense), but his desire is to play (defense)."

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