Louisville basketball lands big man in Class of 2021's Roosevelt Wheeler
Roosevelt Wheeler picked Louisville’s men’s basketball program Monday afternoon and completed the Cardinals' five-man Class of 2021.
The 6-foot-10, 220-pound center brings frontcourt power to a class that rocketed up the rankings with his commitment. Louisville's quintet checked in at 10th nationally (from 22nd) and second in the ACC (from fourth) by 247Sports.com after his decision. Rivals.com upgraded the Cards' 2021 Class to sixth nationally and third in the ACC.
Wheeler joins four other Cards commits in the early signing period: 6-foot-6 guard/forward Michael James, 6-3 guard El Ellis, 6-1 guard Bobby Pettiford and 6-8 guard/forward Eric Van Der Heijden. The first four prospects made their pledges official last week.
Wheeler, a four-star player from Richmond, Virginia, is Louisville's most highly ranked commit in the 2021 Class, per 247Sports and Rivals. He's 60th in the 247Sports Composite and 42nd nationally per Rivals' Top 150. Wheeler also is considered by 247Sports to be second best player coming out of Virginia this year behind Trevor Keels of Fairfax.
Wheeler narrowed his list of potential destinations to five schools about two weeks ago. He chose the Cardinals over LSU, NC State, VCU and Hampton.
He's a key addition to a Louisville frontcourt that was set to lose senior Malik Williams after the year. The NCAA approved a blanket waiver for winter sports athletes in October, granting players an extra season of eligibility due to COVID-19, so Williams may choose to return for another season.
Wheeler could have an opportunity to work with Williams in addition to the Cards' other frontcourt players while adjusting to the college game.
The last month hasn't been easy for Wheeler, who tore his Achilles during a club basketball game, according to the Richmond Post-Dispatch.
The senior and two-time state champ averaged 15.8 points,11.9 rebounds and 4.3 blocks as a John Marshall High School junior and helped the Justices win a 2A State Championship title last March. He scored 11 points with nine rebounds and three blocks in John Marshall's 75-57 title game victory over Gate City.
Wheeler was named First Team, All-State after the season.
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