Jennings waiting his turn

Terrence Jennings, Louisville's 6-foot-10 freshman center, started the season out slowly. Jennings understands that if he's patient his time, specifically more court time, will come.

At 6-foot-10, freshman center Terrence Jennings came to the University of Louisville men's basketball team with high expectations. Jennings, from Sacramento, Calif., was ranked No. 18 nationally (the No. 5 power forward) by in the Class of 2008 coming out of Notre Dame Prep.

But his Cardinal career has gotten off to a slow start.

TJ, as he's known around the UofL locker room, scored 18 points, grabbed five rebounds and had a game-high four steals in the annual Red-White scrimmage was was plagued by a nagging turf toe injury in the preseason.

That's when fellow freshman George Goode beat Jennings out for the role of backup center. TJ saw limited action in UofL's first exhibition game against Georgetown College, but he didn't see any action in the Cards' second exhibition at Northern Kentucky, or in either of their first two regular-season games.

Jennings saw his first action of the season in UofL's upset loss to Western Kentucky in Nashville. He scored two points, grabbed two rebounds and dished out an assist in only three minutes of action.

He saw more action once the Cards returned home for the Marques Maybin Classic, and also began to show flashes of the ability that made him a top recruit and the reason why Pitino brought him to Louisville.

Jennings went scoreless in 11 minutes against Indiana State, but did grab three rebounds and block two shots. The next night he scored six points, on 3-for-4 shooting, grabbed two rebounds, dished out two assists and recorded one steal in only seven minutes in UofL's 91-56 win over Ohio. Then he scored six points on 3 for 4 shooting, grabbed four rebounds and blocked one shot in nine minutes in the Cards' 78-56 win over Lamar. caught up with Jennings after a recent game:

Q: How has this season been for you so far?

A: "It's been a learning experience really. I'm just learning about playing hard and when I get out there just trying to showcase my talent."

Q: Did you think of transferring?

A: "No, not really. I came here to play basketball and to learn and to win basketball games."

Q: How has it been playing for coach Pitino?

A: "Coach P is going to teach you the game, he's going to make you better, and that's all I want to do is get better."

Q: Do you feel like you've come around the last couple of games?

A: "I've just trying to pick my game up, trying to work hard and get better."

Q: What is your goal when you get out there?

A: "Every time I get in I try to do something good, try to make something happen, try to go hard and make plays on offense."

Q: How did it feel get out there and hear the crowd cheer for you and have them get behind you?

A: "I love this crowd. Any time I get out there it makes it that much more fun. We want to get out there and work hard for them. It always feels good when you get out there and make a good play and hear their reaction."

Q: What is your mindset right now?

A: "Everybody knows I've got talent, playing time is going to come, I've just got to be patient."

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