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Griffin signs with U of L

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By Sam Draut

South Oldham senior Jo Griffin signed with the University of Louisville Thursday afternoon to continue to his academic and athletic career collegiately. Griffin accepted a walk-on spot in late February with the U of L men’s basketball team.

Griffin, who averaged 21.3 points and 4.5 rebounds as a senior, finished his career at South Oldham as the program’s second leading scorer and played in the Sweet 16 tournament as a junior.

U of L men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino was originally hinted to Griffin after David Levitch and Donovan Mitchell, two basketball players on U of L’s 2016-17 team, watched Griffin play against North Oldham in late January.

From there, Pitino attended a South Oldham basketball game the following week and Griffin scored 32 points in the game against Eminence. Griffin visited U of L on Feb. 11 as the Cardinals played the University of Miami at the KFC YUM! Center.

He accepted a preferred walk-on spot two weeks later.

Griffin said his father and South Oldham coach Steve Simpson communicated with Pitino and the U of L coaching staff early on as interest grew.

Griffin, who shot 42.3 percent from behind the arc as a senior, said playing for U of L has been a dream of his.

“I have been a Louisville fan my entire life so it was an easy decision,” Griffin said.

Griffin was also drawn to U of L because the program gives walk-ons an opportunity to play.

Several of Louisville’s walk-ons from 2016-17 won’t be returning next season, which could potentially spell playing time for Griffin. Levitch graduated while fellow walk-ons Jay Henderson and Tyler Sharpe decided to transfer from the program.

“It opens up a lot of opportunities for me, you never know what can arise,” Griffin said.

Griffin will move into Billy Minardi Hall, the men’s basketball on campus dorm, and begin taking classes in several weeks.