Mangok Mathiang, a 6-10 freshman from Bradenton (FL) IMG Academy, is enrolled in classes at the University of Louisville but still hasn't been cleared to play this season by the NCAA, Rick Pitino told Drew Deener Wednesday morning on the Early Birds Radio Show.
Mathiang isn't the only freshman awaiting clearance from the NCAA as the 2012-13 season gets underway. UCLA's Shabazz Muhammad and Kentucky's Nerlens Noel are both on campus and enrolled in classes, just like Mathiang, but neither player has been cleared yet by the NCAA to play this season.
Even if the NCAA does provide clearance for Mathiang to play this year, Pitino told Deener he'll probably redshirt him anyway.
"He'll probably redshirt, he's not ready to play whether they admit him or not," Pitino said. "He's just like Gorgui [Dieng] when he came in as a freshman. We don't need him. We have Montrezl [Harrell]. We have Zach Price. And we have Stephen Van Treese. So it's in his best interest to work on his body.
"He's probably the fastest big man we have on our team. So he needs to be developed. We're going to have an unbelievable class coming next year and he'll be part of that class and it will be a much better situation for him. Even if he was cleared I would still redshirt him."