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Louisville’s Russ Smith Returning for Senior Season, Cardinals Are a Title Contender Once Again

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Despite the fact that the NCAA Basketball Championship happened more than two weeks ago, rabid college hoops fans still have plenty over which to salivate here in the heart of spring.

Like, for example, the looming April 28th NBA draft declaration deadline. At that point, those players who’ve declared either have to stay in the draft or pull out. Well, Louisville fans won’t have to wait that long to hear great news they were hoping they’d be hearing.

Junior guard Russ Smith, who’d said he was leaving for the NBA right after the Cardinals won the title on April 8th, has changed his mind and will return to the ‘Ville for his senior season.

This immediately makes Louisville a national title contender once again. Yes, they absolutely could repeat as champs.

Smith–the Cards’ leading scorer at 18.7 points per game–will be joined by returnees Luke Hancock (this year’s Final Four Most Outstanding Player), Wayne Blackshear, Chane Behanan, Montrezl Harrell (he of this monster dunk in the championship game), Stephan Van Treese, and Kevin Ware.

This news coupled with the ridiculously talented class coming to Kentucky to join three key upperclassmen who are coming back, as well, and basketball in the Bluegrass State is going to red (and blue) hot!

Yes, I am an equal opportunity fan, and I cannot wait!

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