Pitino hopes Myles can help Caracter

Rick Pitino hired Ellis Myles as an assistant strength coach for the men's basketball team on Tuesday. But barbells and dumbbells apparently won't be the 25 year-old Myles' main job description.

Rick Pitino hired Ellis Myles as an assistant strength coach for the men's basketball team on Tuesday. But barbells and dumbbells apparently won't be the 25 year-old Myles' main job description.

Instead, Myles top priority will be to help mega-talented freshman Derrick Caracter get back on the court for the Cardinals. Myles returned to Louisville full-time in November after a knee injury put his professional career on hold. Since returning, he's seen nearly every game this season and he's well aware that he's got his work cut out for him.

"To join the staff is something real big," Myles said. "For me to pretty much chaperone D.C. will be a pretty big challenge for me. But I'm up for it. D.C. just needs to understand that if he does the right thing everything else will take care of itself."

Pitino believes Myles could be just what the doctor order for Caracter.

"I think he'll be very good for (Derrick)," Pitino said. "I think Ellis is a very good motivator and he's going to be around so we're going to utilize his skills."

Myles got to know Caracter over the summer while the two played in pick up games. Recently, Myles has been "mentoring" the benched rookie in an unofficial capacity.

"I like D.C. a whole lot. He reminds me a whole lot of me. He's very immature and hopefully I can get through to him because I think he can help the team. We talk a lot, but it's going to be a big challenge for me," Myles said. "Hopefully I can fulfill it."

Myles blamed immaturity for Caracter's current struggles off the court.

"I guess he's a little immature. Everything was given to him in high school and everything came easy for him," Myles said. "I guess he thought everything was going to be easy here, but nothing is easy when you play for coach (Pitino). I don't think he realized that."


Rick Pitino hopes Ellis Myles can help
Derrick Caracter get back on the court.

With Caracter out of the lineup, Louisville's stock has risen on the court. The Cardinals have won 10 of their last 12 games, while Caracter has watched nearly all of them from the bench – or his dorm room.

"With the team winning, he can see that the team doesn't need him," Myles said. "Just talking to him I can see that he really wants to be a part of the team and I'm going to try to help him."

Myles apparently will take a tough-love approach with Caracter. This move could also be a first step toward a coaching career for the former Louisville star, who said he's leaning toward not making a return to the court.

"We'll start back doing some cardio workouts to try to get his weight back down and I'll just try to push him like I tried to push everybody else when I was a senior," Myles said. "I'll be labeled as a coach, but I'll be like a player.

"It's going to be tough. I just hope he respects me on the court as much as he does off the court and we'll go from there. I feel I can really help guys because I really understand the game of basketball. I think I can really help young people out."


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