Rick Pitino reported on his website - RickPitino.com - Thursday that freshman guard Kevin Ware “still has not been cleared to play.”
Though Pitino included the news about Ware last in his review of the team after the first three days of individual instruction, it’s definitely big news for the Cardinals, who are counting on the 6’4 Conyers, Ga., native to provide relief for starting point guard Peyton Siva this season.
Ware did not join Louisville on their exhibition tour to the Bahamas this month because he was finishing up core coursework that he needed to be eligible to play this season.
A Scout.com Top 100 prospect, Ware also was the subject of a New York Times expose that focused on shady recruiting tactics at UCF. Ware verbally committed to UCF last spring, but backed out after the Times story was published.
Though Pitino didn’t elaborate on Ware’s status, Kenny Klein, UofL Sports Information Director, told InsideTheVille.com Thursday afternoon that, “His issues are academic in nature.”
Ware, according to Klein, is not enrolled in classes at UofL as the school, "awaits paperwork."
Last week, Pitino told InsideTheVille.com that he hoped Ware would play a key role for the Cardinals this season.
“Kevin is going to have to play a little bit out of position because I don’t think he’s a natural point (guard),” said Pitino. “But we’re going to play him some at the point, even though he’s a natural two and three. He’s a type of athlete like T-Will is. We need him to play some back up point and if he can his length would be a tremendous asset to our basketball team.”
In addition to the news about Ware’s status, Pitino also reported on his website that shooting guard Chris Smith is, “working on his passing skills as he may need to play some back up point.” Pitino experimented with the 6’3 Smith playing point guard in the Bahamas.
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