It was announced a little while ago that Miami (FL) freshman forward Matt Cross would be transferring to Louisville. Today, that became official as he signed his financial aid agreement is now a Cardinal.
Cross is a 6’6 combo forward that will likely play the 3 and/or 4 for Coach Mack. Cross was a 4 Star prospect coming out of Brewster Academy, the same school that produced Donovan Mitchell. Cross chose the Hurricanes over Florida, Georgia Tech, Indiana, and Iowa, among others per 247sports.
Cross played in 14 games this season for Miami, starting in 9 of them with an average of around 26 minutes played per contest. He averaged 6.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game. Cross shot 44.9-percent from the field and 40-percent from the 3-point line per sports-reference.com.
Cross showed in his minutes to be a highly capable long-range shooter, something sorely lacking on the Cards roster this season. Had Louisville had a reliable outside shooter, it may have alleviated the pressure on Carlik Jones and David Johnson’s drives. The lane would’ve likely been easier to drive with a threat from the outside. Matt Cross can be that spot-up 3-point threat that our guards,whomever they may be, can penetrate and kick to for open shots.
For more on the newest member of Card Nation, see UofL’s press release below:
PRESS RELEASE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF LOUISVILLE ATHLETIC DEPARTMENT:
LOUISVILLE, Ky. –LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Matt Cross, a 6-7, 225-pound forward from Beverly, Mass., who played his freshman collegiate season this year at the University of Miami (Florida), has signed a financial aid agreement with the University of Louisville to play with the Cardinals.
As a transfer, Cross is the sixth newcomer joining the 2021-22 Louisville roster, adding to an impressive five-person class that signed with the Cardinals in November that is currently ranked as the No. 4 class in the nation by Rivals.com, No. 5 by 247Sports and 11th by ESPN.
“We are excited to add one of the best shooters in the country to our program,” said UofL Head Men’s Basketball Coach Chris Mack. “Matt Cross will help our team a lot next season and beyond. He is a tough kid, is more than a just shooter and has ACC experience from day one. Matt will arrive for summer school this June and provide some things our team was missing this past season. We can’t wait to get him here.”
In 14 games as a freshman with the Hurricanes including nine starts, Cross averaged 6.9 points, 3.5 rebounds and made 20-of-50 three-point goals (.400). Just the third freshman to start a season opener for Miami since 2004, Cross added 20 assists, 11 steals and seven blocked shots.
He matched a season high with 16 points against Louisville on Jan. 16, adding four rebounds and two assists while connecting on 4-of-6 three-point goals against the Cardinals. He also scored 16 points against then-No. 24 Virginia Tech, making 4-of-6 threes against the Hokies with five rebounds and three assists. He had four double-figure scoring efforts this season and grabbed four or more rebounds in eight games.
Cross pulled down a season-high eight rebounds against Jacksonville on Dec. 19 and handed out a season-best seven assists against Clemson on Jan. 2, the most for a Miami freshman in three years. He left the Miami team in late January.
Prior to his freshman year at Miami, Cross averaged 18.6 points, 10.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game as a senior in helping Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H. achieve a 37-3 record, a 2019-20 NEPSAC runner-up finish and a National Prep Championship title. Former UofL standout Donovan Mitchell was also a product of Brewster Academy.
Cross ranked among the top 100 high school student-athletes in his 2020 recruiting class, including No. 86 in the ESPN 100, No. 93 in the 247Sports composite rankings, and No. 99 by Rivals.com. He had initially chosen to attend Miami after also considering offers from Florida, Butler, Iowa, Indiana, South Carolina and Texas A&M.
Cross joins an incoming top five recruiting class as newcomers to the Louisville roster that includes El Ellis, a 6-3, 175-pound guard from Durham, N.C. and Tallahassee (Fla.) Community College; Mike James, a 6-6, 195-pound guard/forward from Oak Ridge High School in Orlando, Fla.; Bobby Pettiford, a 6-1, 175-pound guard from South Granville High School in Creedmoor, N.C.; Eric Van der Heijden, a 6-8, 205-pound guard/forward from Millbrook High School in Raleigh, N.C. and Roosevelt Wheeler, a 6-10, 240-pound forward/center from John Marshall High School in Richmond, Va.