NOTEBOOK: Freshmen big men impressive

In this addition of the 'Notebook,' Terrence Williams and Andre McGee talk about freshmen big men Samardo Samuels and Terrence Jennings, the emergence of a consistently dominant Earl Clark, and why Williams believes the Cardinals have a chance to cut the nets down in Detroit.

McGee and fellow senior captain Terrence Williams expressed high hopes to InsideTheVille.com about Louisville's two talented freshmen big men – 6-foot-8 Samardo Samuels and 6-foot-10 Terrence Jennings. Samuels and Jennings are expected to carry the load in the post this season for the David Padgett-less Cardinals.

"Samardo..you can't really guard him. He's too strong," Williams said. "And he can hit the open 18 footer. Terrence Jennings is very athletic. He's got to learn some moves in the post and get his footwork right but once he learns that he'll be great. I already love to run pick and rolls with him because I just come off the screen and put the ball in the air and he dunks it. They both look good."

"I think they're going to be really good for us," added McGee. "But only time will tell when they get out on that court. They really have the potential to be great players. Terrence Jennings is not really a banger – he's more of a long guy. But he's a real athlete and he's able to block shots for us. So he's going to be a difference-maker for us on defense. Samardo is like a man-child. I didn't know he was that strong as a player. He's not really that tall but he has long arms and once he gets in there it's hard to stop him. He's going to be a matchup problem for a lot of teams and they're going to have to double team him because he's that strong of a man."

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And how about Inside The Ville's 2008-09 Basketball Preview Issue cover-boy, Earl Clark? McGee says the 6-foot-9 junior appears ready to put up big numbers on a consistent basis this season.

"It's his time to shine," McGee said. "He paid his dues his freshman year and last year was really his year to break out. So this year I think he'll be able to do a lot of things he didn't do last year from an offensive and defensive standpoint. He'll probably get some more playing time which will help also. He's everywhere on the court and a matchup problem for so many guys because he's tall and creates a lot of problems at his position. I think he's going to have a terrific season."

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Ranked in the preseason Top 5's of many respected basketball publications, Williams explains why Louisville, along with North Carolina and Connecticut, can think about winning a national championship this season:

"To compete with UConn and North Carolina and win a national championship you've got to have a very deep bench," explained Williams. "And our second unit is as good as our first. You've got to be nine or ten deep and that's what we have."


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