Louisville, KY — The Louisville Cardinals defeated the Miami Hurricanes in a hard fought battle 55-53. The Hurricanes controlled the contest for a majority of the afternoon; however, the Cardinals hung around and seized control when they needed it most. Leading the charge for the Cardinals was junior forward Montrezl Harrell, who contributed 21 points, 14 rebounds, three blocks, and three steals. Harrell is widely viewed as a potential lottery pick in this year’s NBA Draft.
Checking in at 6’8” and 240 pounds, Harrell is a physical athlete on both ends of the floor. He is as quick as most guards at the collegiate level and combines that quickness with his great power and physicality to attack the basket. He hasn’t developed a true post game, he utilizes both size and speed to try and beat his man. His shot looks as though he pushes the ball and doesn’t utilize his legs enough, leading to inconsistency. Harrell’s strongest skill on the offensive end is his activity pursing a rebound. When he has a chance to grab a rebound he is going over or through anyone in his way to get the ball. On the defensive end, Harrell is just as active. He has quick hands and loves to travel across the land to block or alter shots. He’s aggressive in Louisville’s full court press and routinely is looking to jump the passing lanes to steal the ball.
Overall, there is no doubt Harrell is going to be a first round pick and likely a lottery pick. His athleticism and power are on par with NBA level talent. Couple that with his aggression and motor and he is poised to be a serviceable power forward at the next level. The biggest question mark is going to be: can he control that aggression and attitude? This was spotlighted perfectly in the game today. In the first half Harrell threw the ball off of his opponent. While the most natural instinct for most players is to throw the ball off their opponent’s leg, Harrell threw the ball off of his opponent’s face and received a technical foul. Again, there is no doubt Harrell has the talent to compete in the NBA, the question will be, can he control his attitude and sustain a lengthy career?
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