Wayne Blackshear’s High School Coach Says He Made A Mistake Coming To Louisville

Wayne Blackshear

This may sound crazy to some Louisville fans, but when Wayne Blackshear verbally committed to Rick Pitino in 2009, it was a very big deal. Outside of Samardo Samuels, Blackshear was the highest rated prospect to commit to Louisville in Pitino’s tenure.

Because he committed so early, fans spent nearly two years salivating at the thought of a McDonalds All American scoring guard thriving in Rick Pitino’s offense. While Blackshear has had some bright moments in his career, as he heads into his senior season, he hasn’t come close to living up to the lofty expectations.

Rick Pitino was critical of Blackshear in his season ending press conference.

“The only player I’ve had that hasn’t had substantial improvement is Wayne Blackshear. And if you ask me to rate him on a 10-star scale as a person, I’d give you an 11,” Pitino said.

“I told Wayne yesterday you need to get yourself in this game. Now he’ll show up for practice and give you 100 percent. But that’s not what our players do here. The Luke Hancocks, the Russ Smiths, the Gorgui Diengs, they get in early, they stay late, they come after, they come in at nighttime, and you’re not doing that. So we’ve got to turn over a whole new leaf, and I told him I want him to text me every day what he has put into each day. Because he’s got to, for his own sake, understand that the world will pass him by if he doesn’t live in that gym. And he’s a great kid.”

“He deserves a great senior year. And I tried to use, I told him Wayne, I’ve seen it all. I’ve seen a young man come in here, and I thought I made a big mistake, he wasn’t this level. Sophomore year I saw a little improvement. He’s not big enough, doesn’t handle the ball well enough. Then he started changing his body, changing his game, and senior year, on Senior Night, I see them all chanting his name, “Larry,” while he’s scoring 30 points. I’m hoping that Wayne has the same senior year that Larry O’Bannon had.”

Blackshear’s former high school coach recently came out and said that he should have never even committed to Louisville.

“The only one of our guys that didn’t hold out for a while was Wayne Blackshear,” Morgan Park High School coach Nick Irvin said when discussing the recruitment of his current players.

“He made an early decision and it was a mistake. Just a terrible decision to go to Louisville. We told him that at the time. They shouldn’t have rushed it.”

Considering he hasn’t had much success in his first three years, you could argue that Irvin has a point. That said, I think Blackshear will be much more involved in the offense with Luke Hancock and Russ Smith gone.

About Cardinal Connect Staff

Cardinal Connect Staff


  1. A terrible decision to go to UL Mr. Irvin? So Wayne will leave UL with a National title and two final fours (possibly more) playing for a Hall of Fame Coach and a degree under his belt. All of this and at one of the top programs in the nation. That is a terrible decision? Wayne needs to own some of the responsibility with his lack of work ethic. This kid has all the talent in the world but it’s not just going to be handed to you. Look at the stories out there about Russ during the off-season. You know how much I’ve read about Wayne during his off-season?

  2. of course it was a terrible decision…Pitino does not prepare hisnplayers for anything beyond college bball, and everyone in the high school/aau ranks knows that. its why blue chip recruits dont generally look his way. he recruits the same guys K, Roy, Cal, etc do, but they know going to UL makes you a cog in the massive Pitino ego, nothing more. Sure its nice to get a title every 3 decades or so, but these guys have a lot of life to live after college, and Pitino is simply not interested in that fact.

    • Lol what a ridiculous comment.

    • You UK people need to learn history. Since you all like bringing up titles from 50 years ago how about Pitino getting your program where it is now. He took over a program that had been under serious penalties from cheating. Hmmm. Pitino got you all two championships. Tubby’s players were his guys too. Maybe thank the man instead of the drivel you all like to spew without facts. What else is new with you retards that couldn’t get into UK if your life depended on it.

      • jk could stand to review both schools records since the modern era of the NCAA tourney (expanded field), nearly identical. As for putting players into the next level? Cal isn’t making those kids better than they’d be elsewhere; in an earlier time some would have skipped college altogether, neither Coach is making pros out of mediocre players because it can’t be done.

    • Ask Gorgui Dieng if Pitino prepared him. He improved more than any player in college during his 4 years. He’s doing great for the timberwolves.

  3. That’s a bunch of bull!! UofL has stood by him the whole way wanting nothing but the best for him everytime he has stepped on the court. Its not ours or Ricks fault other players has passed him by like he was standing still!!! And to sayRick don’t care about his players life after Bb is the stupidest thing I think I ever heard b4!!!!”

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