After a series of meetings with his family that went well into the night, Cardinal Mooney basketball sensation Ryan McMahon was pretty sure where he wanted to play college basketball.
So at noon Friday, McMahon called Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino and told him he was coming to be a member of his famed basketball program.
McMahon received a phone call from Pitino on Thursday night after he led the Cougars to an overtime victory over St. Petersburg Shorecrest in a region quarterfinal game.
He was still at the gym going over the game plan for next week's region semifinal, said his father Dave McMahon.
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“We had multiple conversations last night and got together as a family. Ryan slept on it, looked at his options and decided on Louisville,” Dave McMahon said. “He is going to be playing for the best coach in the country, and it’s going to be the biggest challenge of his life. Coach Pitino just told him to get ready to work.”
Ryan and his father made an official visit to Louisville several weeks ago and sat down to dinner with Pitino. Dave McMahon said Pitino told him he would help make Ryan the best basketball player he could be, but the 6-foot guard should be prepared for a lot of work.
“You don’t want to sit on an offer like that for too long because it might not be there forever,” Dave McMahon said. “I am happy for Ryan, and he is relieved. There are times people see things that you can’t see. I am no fool. There is a lot of work to do. As a father you have a lot of emotions of being proud with anxiety.
“Ryan has always been undervalued as a player, and he has never shied away from work. He has accepted the challenge to play for a great program and is relieved. Louisville does their homework. They just don’t throw out scholarships.”
McMahon is averaging 27 points per game this season and shooting a blistering 52 percent from beyond the arc. He scored 22 of his 32 points last night in the second half when Cardinal Mooney wiped out a 12-point deficit and won in overtime. He keyed a 14-point run, scoring 13 to get the Cougars back into the game.