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    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Facebook Page
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    Last week at his season-ending press conference University of Louisville men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino said that despite the anticipated loss of three starters from a team that just advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament he didn’t want to rebuild for next season.  

    "I want to reload," he said. 

    The Cardinals have begun that process. Tuesday UofL announced that it has added a fifth-year transfer - Trey Lewis, a 6-foot-2 guard from Cleveland State who lit up Louisville for 24 points back in November. Lewis, who averaged 16.2 points per game this past season for the Vikings, will able to suit up for the Cards next season after he completes his communication management degree at Cleveland State in May.

    “We are really excited to have Trey in our program,” Pitino said in a press release. “He is a talented young man with an incredible attitude and his leadership qualities fit perfectly for what we need. He’s a point guard who scores, does a good job of getting in the lane, and sets his teammates up well. Since we’ve played the last four years with two point guards it’s perfect to continue on that path with our running and pressing style.”

    If November 26 is any indication Lewis (No. 3 for CSU in the picture above) should be a perfect fit for UofL. That’s the night he tallied a game-high 24 points - 17 in the first half - in the Vikings’ 45-33 loss at the KFC Yum! Center. He was 9 for 20 from the field, including 4 of 10 from 3-point range, and 2 for 6 from the free throw line and drew plenty of praise after the game from Pitino.

    “It was unbelievable playing in the KFC Yum! Center in November,” Lewis said. “I had never played in front of such an electric crowd with loyal fans. I feed off that energy, whether the crowd is for me or against me. It will be great to play for the best fans in the nation now.”

    Lewis will enroll in graduate school at UofL after completing his undergrad course work at CSU.

    “I feel like Louisville is a place that I can thrive in my last year of college,” he said. “I had a list of schools that I was considering, but coach Pitino really expressed his want and need for me. He and his staff can really help me maximize my potential and I look forward to the development. There’s so much that I can learn.”

    Lewis, who is originally from Garfield Heights, Ohio, played his freshman season at Penn State before transferring to Cleveland State, where he became a standout.  

    “Another big part of my decision to come to Louisville was my time with the players while I was on my visit because I am big on relationships,” he said. “I think it’s a team with a great bond, they made me feel like I was part of the family already and they told me how much that they wanted me to be their teammate. There’s no one envious of others and I wanted them to know that I’m going to work my tail off to earn their trust.”

    With Terry Rozier entering the NBA Draft, Lewis will likely move into the starting backcourt alongside Quentin Snider and possibly incoming freshman Donovan Mitchell depending on if Pitino goes with a three-guard lineup.

    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Facebook Page

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