LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Louisville forward Wayne Blackshear, just one game after moving into the University of Louisville's starting lineup at power forward, is out with a concussion and will not make the trip to Houston for the Cardinals' game Wednesday night, U of L coach Rick Pitino said today.
"We're big-time short-handed," Pitino said via text. He's scheduled to meet the media at his regular pregame news conference today at 2 p.m.
Blackshear has been inconsistent this season, but Pitino is hoping his move to an undersized power forward will allow him to take advantage of quickness to create more offensive opportunity.
The junior from Chicago has averaged 9.7 points and 3.4 rebounds, but struggled with foul trouble and eventually lost his starting spot at small forward in favor of Luke Hancock, who has played better as his health has improved.
Blackshear's last game against Houston, in the KFC Yum! Center on Jan. 16, was his best of the season. He scored 23 points in 29 minutes, making 8 of 10 shots from the field and 5 of 6 from three-point range in a 91-52 victory.
Without him, the Cards will go back to a more traditional rotation with Mangok Mathiang and Stephan Van Treese at the center spot. The return of Chris Jones also gives Pitino the option of going with three guards at times.
"You have so many more offensive weapons with Wayne at the four, just like Kyle Kuric was the four," Pitino said after U of L's 87-70 win over Central Florida Saturday. "We've just got to get him to know the plays."