Scott County star Gilbert to walk on at Louisville

mfields@herald-leader.comApril 28, 2014 

Scott County basketball star Trent Gilbert is passing up several scholarship offers to be a preferred walk-on at Louisville next season.

Gilbert, who averaged 26 points for Scott County's Sweet Sixteen runners-up this season, knows the odds are against him getting playing time at Louisville, especially early on.

"It's a long shot, and it won't be an easy process." he said. "I'll have to work and earn it. But I'm going to take my chances and go for it."

Gilbert had scholarship offers from Marshall, Tennessee Tech, Winthrop, Kentucky Wesleyan and Georgetown College, along with a few other smaller schools. But he wanted to take a shot at the big time.

Gilbert was a shooting star at Scott County. He made 130 of 326 three-pointers (40 percent) this season, and 304 of 335 free throws (91 percent).

Gilbert said Cardinals Coach Rick Pitino told him, "If you can shoot, if you can put it in the hole, you can play anywhere."

Before making his decision to walk on at Louisville, Gilbert called Elisha Justice to get his input.

Justice, who won Mr. Basketball honors after leading Shelby Valley to the 2010 state title, committed to Louisville as a walk-on before his senior season. He wound up getting a scholarship from the Cards the next May. Justice saw limited action for two seasons before transferring to the University of Pikeville, mainly for family reasons.

"I asked Elisha about what it was like at Louisville, and whether he'd do it over if he had the chance," Gilbert said.

"He said it was a great opportunity and a great experience, and he'd go for it again if he could."

Gilbert didn't try out for the Kentucky All-Stars a few weeks ago. He said he played for the Kentucky All-Stars' junior team last year "and I just kind of didn't want to do it again."

Mike Fields: (859) 231-3337.Twitter: @MikeFieldsNotes.Blog: fieldsnotes.bloginky.com

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