Louisville Basketball 2020-21 Roster Outlook 3.0: The Final Piece Added
It has been over two months since we last did our follow up roster outlook for the 2020-21 Louisville Cardinals men's basketball season, and not a lot has changed to Team 107's overall makeup.
But now that the program has filled all available scholarship spots, we'll take another look at how this team will look when they open up next season against Western Kentucky, as well who could see action at what positions.
Departures and Arrivals
At this point, it's well documented who the Cardinals lost in this offseason. Lamarr "Fresh" Kimble, Keith Oddo, Steven Enoch, Dwayne Sutton and Ryan McMahon all graduated, Jordan Nwora declared for the NBA Draft (as did Class of 2020 signee Jay Scrubb), and Darius Perry committed to UCF as a graduate transfer.
On the contrary, head coach Chris Mack is also bringing in his fair share of talent to replace the players he lost. Graduate transfers Carlik Jones & Charles Minlend are coming over from Radford and San Francisco respectively, and JJ Traynor & D'Andre Davis are joining the program from the high school ranks.
That left the Cards with just a single scholarship left to fill, with head coach Chris Mack finally getting it filled this past week. On Tuesday, Class of 2021 center Gabe Wiznitzer committed to Louisville, and stated that he will reclassify to 2020.
Projected Depth Chart
Now that Louisville has a full assortment of scholarship players for 2020-21, let's take another look at what the depth chart could look like:
There shouldn't be much debate as to who will more often than not be PG1 next season. After surging in the latter half of his freshman season, David Johnson should take the majority of the reps at point guard. However, beyond him are some question marks. While Josh Nickelberry is more of an off-ball guard, he could wind up being the second string point guard. Carlik Jones could also see action here if both he and Charles Minlend are on the floor at the same time.
Speaking of Jones, he will more than likely be the starter at the two guard spot. While he doesn't have the size and length that Minlend does, he has a tad more ability from a scoring and ball distribution standpoint. Minlend however could see starting roles in instances where Louisville plays bigger teams (i.e. not Virginia Tech).
With Jordan Nwora heading to the NBA, this will make way for Samuell Williamson to have a more impactful role in the 2020-21 season. While the McDonald's All-American didn't have quite the freshman campaign he hoped for, he is confident that he will have a much better sophomore year. Combined with the physicality and scoring ability of D'Andre Davis and Minlend's abilities at the three spot, the Cards should get some solid play from the wing next season.
Like in every previous 2020-21 roster outlook we have done, the depth at the four spot remains unchanged and for good reason. Mack had already seemed to favor the instincts and athleticism of Withers, and he recently told Big Red Louie that Withers had grown an extra inch in the offseason and could easily see reps at the five spot. It's his spot to lose, with Quinn Slazinski & JJ Traynor competing for the backup four spot.
Finally we have the center position. While Gabe Wiznitzer is another piece for Mack to use in the post, he will most likely redshirt his freshman campaign. Malik Williams is the defensive heart & soul and almost a guarantee to be pencilled in as the five spot starter, but question marks still remain at the position. Aidan Igiehon will more than likely be the backup center, but it remains to be seen if he will make the adjustment to the college level.
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