Louisville offers Ball; Decision looms

Good things come to those who wait. Tuesday, Stephon Ball, a 6'5, 215-pound tight end from Cincinnati, picked up an offer he had been waiting for from Louisville. Ball, who has narrowed his options to hometown Cincinnati and UofL, plans to make a decision by early next week. How will a visit to Louisville this weekend influence his decision?

Good things come to those who wait. Tuesday, Stephon Ball, a 6'5, 215-pound tight end from Cincinnati, picked up an offer he had been waiting for from Louisville. Ball, who has narrowed his options to hometown Cincinnati and UofL, plans to make a decision by early next week.

Since helping lead Cincinnati St. Xavier to the Ohio state title last week, Ball, who also holds an offer from West Virginia, has become a hot regional commodity.

"Louisville offered me today," Ball said. "They called Coach Specht – my head coach – and told him. So when I was leaving school my coach called me and told me. And then Coach Brohm called me this evening and said they want to send me an offer."


Louisville offered Stephon Ball on Tuesday.

Louisville is looking for another tight end after four-star Iowa prospect Ben Cotton backed out of his commitment last week to follow his father to Nebraska. Realizing that Ball was close to picking Cincinnati, Louisville moved quickly this week to become a player for the Cincinnati standout.

"Coach Brohm came to school yesterday because he heard that I was close to committing to UC, so he drove up to talk to me and tell me just to wait for a little bit because Louisville was going to (offer)," Ball said. "So they offered today and he called me and told me that he wanted me to be a part of their offense. He said that I'd get the ball a lot and be a big part of the offense."

Ball will travel with his mother to Louisville this weekend for his official visit.

"I'm going to take my official visit to Louisville this weekend," Ball said. "I'm probably going to decide between UC and Louisville sometime next week. I'm trying to get my visit in so I can hurry up and make a decision."

Ball said he's shooting for Tuesday to make his decision. "I know UC is holding a scholarship for me. I think they are down to one player that they can take at my position and they are holding a scholarship for me. I told them I'd make my decision early next week so if I don't go there they can get someone else."

Ball camped at Louisville last summer and told InsideTheVille.com in July that the Cardinals were his "top choice." Does Ball still list Louisville as his favorite now that the Cardinals have made an offer?

"Not really. I'm torn between the two really," Ball said.

Here's what Ball had to say about his two favorites:

Louisville: "I like the coaches at Louisville mostly. Their coaching staff reminds me a lot of my coaching staff. Coach Kragthorpe is a real good guy. I've talked to him a lot over the phone and in person and he's really down to earth and has his head on straight. He has a good plan for the next couple of years. Once he gets the guys in that he wants he'll get everything going."

Cincinnati: "Cincinnati is one of the first schools that offered me. I have the best relationship with that school. They've been to my house and I've taken my official visit there and I've been on the phone with them every week. I know every coach on their staff by name and I've talked to them all. Relationship-wise I'm closer with UC right now."

Louisville already has a commitment from one of Ball's teammates – running back Darius Ashley. Ball and Ashley have been close friends for several years and that friendship could play a small role in Ball's decision.

"It's a little bit of a factor," Ball said. "He's been friend since we were young. But I'm not going to decide my college decision off of a friend. I need to do what is best for me. I sat down for two hours and talked with my parents last night. I just need to talk with my parents and see what's best for me."


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