Pitino burning up recruiting trail

Louisville coach Rick Pitino hit the recruiting trail hard last week, watching several of the Cardinals top commits and prospects. InsideTheVille.com has a run-down of the players Pitino hit the road to see last week.

Rick Pitino doesn't act like a guy planning to make a move to the NBA.

In fact, Pitino has been one of the most visible college coaches on the recruiting trail this season. Last week, Pitino was especially busy, catching at least six Louisville commits/prospects in action.

Last Tuesday, Pitino was in Indianapolis to watch his top 2011 recruiting target – Marquis Teague – score 25, 21 in the second half, in a loss to Hamilton Southeastern.

Louisville appears the favorite to land the five-star point guard, who canceled a visit to Kentucky last week. Pitino has been the most active coach in Teague's recruitment and the Cardinals have several other factors working in their favor. Teague is expected to announce his college decision after the high school season.

Pitino wasn't out on the recruiting trail last Wednesday but he had a good reason: Louisville was locked in a double-overtime game against Notre Dame at Freedom Hall.

A day after knocking off the Irish 91-89, Pitino was back on the road. Thursday, Pitino and West Virginia coach Bob Huggins were in Bowling Green to see Chane Behanan, a talented 2011 combo forward. Louisville hasn't offered yet but it was the second time this month Pitino has seen Behanan in action. The 6-7, 225-pound didn't disappoint. Behanan scored 18 points, including a pair of thunderous dunks, in a 74-54 win over Daviess County.

Pitino watched Gorgui Dieng Sunday at Boyd County HS.
Friday, Pitino was in Chicago to see 2011 Louisville commit Wayne Blackshear hit the game-winning shot in the Chicago PSL championship game against Marshall. Blackshear scored 21 points in the contest, including a short bank shot with 14 seconds remaining to give his team a 61-60 victory. Blackshear also had five rebounds.

After Louisville dispatched DePaul in Chicago Saturday afternoon, Pitino was back home to attend Jeffersontown's game against Shelby Valley and Elijah Justice. Justice, who will walk-on at Louisville next season, put on show, finishing with 31 points, seven assists, and three steals. Justice, the all-time steals leader in the state of Kentucky, is a candidate for Mr. Basketball honors. Justice is averaging 20.2 points, 6.4 assists and 4.3 steals this season and led his team to a second straight All 'A' Classic title.

Sunday, Pitino traveled to Ashland to see 2010 commit Justin Coleman and top 2010 recruit Gorgui Dieng play against Philadelphia's Rise Academy. Huntington led by just six with six minutes left until Dieng and Coleman took over. Dieng had back to back dunks to push the margin to 10 before Coleman threw down a pair of dunks, including a 360-flush, to finish off a 77-65 win. Coleman finished with 18 points, while Dieng had 14 points, 12 boards and seven blocks.

Pitino, who recently landed a commitment from Coleman, has been working hard to get a commitment from Dieng, too. The Cardinals lead Marshall and others for Dieng's commitment. Marshall coach Donnie Jones was also in attendance for Sunday's game.

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