INDIANAPOLIS (WDRB) — Kevin Ware is leaving the University of Louisville basketball program.
Cardinals coach Rick Pitino confirmed this morning to ESPN.com. "We wish Kevin Godspeed," he said.
Ware was the focal point of college basketball one year ago in this city, after a gruesome broken leg he suffered in the first half of Louisville's win over Duke in the Elite Eight.
He received an outpouring of support from around the nation, and fan mail by the thousands.
He made a quicker-than-expected return, just 220 days after the injury, with a three-pointer in an exhibition victory on Nov. 6, and appeared on his way to a remarkable comeback when he came down on the injured leg wrong in a win over Missouri State on Dec. 17 and did not play again. He will seek a medical redshirt.
Sources say Ware likely will look for a destination closer to his family's home in Georgia, with Georgia state or Auburn among the possibilities. Bruce Pearl, who recruited Ware to Tennessee, just took the job at Auburn.
For Ware, celebrity was a difficult thing to handle. He was, on social media, among the most popular athletes in the nation for a time. When he received a speeding ticket over the summer, it received national attention.
After he re-injured his leg, Ware made an ensuing trip with the team on a trip to Florida, but without being able to practice drifted away from the group, though he was always appreciative of his team on social media, and expressed gratitude to coach Rick Pitino.
With U of L heading back to the scene of his accident, there were increased questions about his whereabouts. Pitino and U of L said that his status with the school and program remained unchanged, and he was included in the Cardinals' postseason media guide, but he was not in Indianapolis with the team, and was not involved in team activities for much of February.