Red and White Scrimmage Team 105 Squad Goals


Red and White Scrimmage Team 105 Squad Goals

Coach Mack walked on campus and the players were ready. We have a great core group of guys. They are guys who want to be coached and they really bought in pretty quick. The physical transformations are very obvious. Nobody gonna just take the ball from this group. And you can just see the extra bounce in their game.

Jordan Nwora and VJ King will be the straw that stirs the drink this season. They are both bigtime guys and there won’t be too many better on the floor in any game this season. This coaching staff has given both of these guys an environment they can thrive in. They led the way Sunday. King scored 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting, including 3-of-4 from three, and snagged five rebounds. Nwora recorded a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

Really like what I see out of Christen Cunningham. He has a real nose for the lane and is really crafty off the dribble. He puts his head down and goes. He’s gonna force a lot of help situations this season. Nwora and McMahon will feed off those dump outs. He’s gonna run the offense but ”CC” is gonna score points. He led the Red team in scoring with 15, grabbed five rebounds and handed out four assists. Solid!

My sleeper for this season is Malik Williams. He is starting to realize that his game is in the post. I like that he has the versatility to step out and shoot that three but good things happen when he is jumping off of that block. He had a couple of really strong moves Sunday that were legit. He had a good scrimmage scoring 11 points and hauling in six rebounds.

Once he sheds the ring rust Steven Enoch is going to be big time. And he is a big dude. He already has a solid post presence but once he gains some confidence watch out. His goal should be to dunk the ball every time he gets it. We will see that beast eventually. Enoch pitched in 10 points and eight rebounds Sunday.

These are the guys that stood out at the scrimmage and I think you can expect them to stand out for most of this season. I will give an honorable mention to Dwayne Sutton. He has a blue collar game. Not gonna bust out on the stat sheet but is going to do all the little things and will have that one tempo changing play that stands out. He finished with seven points and four boards.

There is still a lot of talent and ability left on this roster folks. Ryan Mac left from that great 2015 Class. He has a lot of ability. VJ King the lone 2016 recruit is one of the most highly touted in the history of the program. He was a 5* Top 25 guy. It’s all there if the right buttons are pushed. The 2017 Class of Nwora, Williams, Perry and Thomas was top 10. All of these guys have upside for days. Thomas left the program but I think the other three are ready to step into their roles this season. Enoch is also an elite talent. Once he learns to put it all together. Say what you will about Rick but he didn’t leave our cupboard empty.

Not going to get too confident after an intrasquad scrimmage but you can feel the change and that’s exciting. If this team meets its squad goals then they could be a special group.

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Red & White Scrimmage ushers in another new Era



Twenty years ago we got to watch our Louisville Basketball teams play in early scrimmages against teams like EA Sports All-Stars, Premiere Athletes and Athletes In Action to quench our thirst for early hoops. On October 24th, 2010 The Cards’ hosted a public intrasquad scrimmage to open the new 22,000-seat KFC Yum! Center. A new platform for early season hoops had arrived and the Red and White scrimmage ushered in a new era that evening.

It was the day that every Louisville Cardinal fan had waited for. We would no longer play second fiddle to truck pulls, horse shows, and rodeos. And we would no longer have to watch as our arch rival Kentucky played a game on our home court. The University of Louisville Basketball team would finally have a home to call its own. Tickets were grabbed up fast by Cardinal fans and that first Red/white scrimmage was sold out in days. Louisville Fans weren’t going to pass up the chance to see their new digs.

A year later on Oct. 14, 2011 the Red and White Scrimmage would take the National stage when Louisville was one of 11 schools featured during “ESPNU Midnight Madness”. It was a four-hour program that did live cut in’s showcasing how some of the top programs in the country were starting their practices that year.

After that big night the Red and White scrimmage became a staple for the program and on Sunday afternoon it will usher in another new era of Louisville Basketball. Coach Mack hit the ground running when he was hired as the Louisville Basketball coach. That Louisville Brand everyone thought would take years to repair hasn’t missed a beat on the recruiting trail. It just goes to show you what happens when you get a young hungry guy like Coach Mack. He rolled his sleeves up and went to work. I really love his blue-collar approach.

He has also managed to fix the distance between alumni and current program. He has everyone feeling ownership again and Cardinal pride has never been stronger across the board. The way Coach Mack has attacked all of these challenges in just a short period of time is really impressive and don’t know of many who could have done it any better. I know this guy is a helluva basketball coach, but he is also a magician. He has made the blues disappear.

The team’s motto this season is Tough, Together, Unbreakable and in talking with these guys at media day they are living up to every word of that. These guys have transformed their bodies, are transforming their games and transformed their minds. I don’t think it’s going to be easy for anyone to break this teams will.

We owe it to this staff and to this roster of players to pack the Yum Center for Sunday’s Red and White Scrimmage just like we have in the past for big moments. Fans need to follow Coach Mack’s lead. Let’s show the College Basketball world that the NCAA didn’t slow us down. They only woke us up.
Stay woke…

L’s Up!

Media Day Interviews

Ryan McMahon

Darius Perry

Jordan Nwora

Khwan Fore

VJ King

Mlik Williams

Akoy Agau

Christen Cunningham

The Brohm Legacy Comes Full Circle: A College Gameday Story


It was another rough weekend for Cardinal Football fans. It was much of the same old same as Louisville football drops to 2-5 on the season 0-4 in conference play. It is the worst start to a season since 2009. There are a lot of similarities to that year including a win over Indiana State to hang our hat on and a hat rack for a coach.

I see the same type of apathy slowly seeping back into the program. The type of apathy that took years to get out. I never thought it would go this way for Coach Petrino. I pictured a celebrated retirement with him coming back to home games in his old man sweaters. This is not fun to watch. I have loyalty built up for this man thanks to many great years of his brand of football. But even I know it’s time for a change.

That decision is not up to me. That decision has to go thru many levels of very complicated folks. With an absurd buyout, I don’t know if those folks will see Coach Petrino’s only bad season the same way a lot of us do. They may decide to give him another year fan support be damned.

I like to play devil’s advocate. They might give Bobby 2.0 a mulligan this season. I expect it. But if Vince Tyra does end up with the decision on his desk this winter I’d like to paint a picture for him of what things could look like opening up the 2019 Football season against Notre Dame.

You have to figure that the Irish will be ranked in the Top 5 nationally to start the 2019 season. Now picture if you will a family born and raised just miles from Cardinal Stadium with Louisville Football flowing thru their veins. A family legacy like no other in college sports. A story that has College Gameday written all over it.

If your last name is Brohm you are born a football fan. They are arguably the first family of football in this hoops-crazy state of Kentucky and in the city of Louisville they are football royalty. The Brohm family, including mother, Donna, and sister, Kim, were recently inducted into the Louisville Catholic Sports Hall of Fame for their contributions to the game.

It all started with the patriarch of the Brohm family Oscar. Oscar Brohm was a Football standout at Flaget High School in Louisville during the 1962-65 seasons. An all-state performer he led Flaget to a 10-1 record and the Louisville City Championship in 1965 setting a Louisville city school record with 23 touchdowns. He was a passing QB when passing wasn’t cool. Oscar played QB for the Cardinals during the 1968 and 69 seasons.

He would pass his offensive prowess down to his sons and they all helped create a football dynasty at Trinity High School in Louisville and for the hometown Cardinals. Four Brohm family members are letterwinners at the University of Louisville, Oscar (quarterback 1966-69), Jeff (quarterback 1989-93) and brothers, Greg (wide receiver 1989-92) and Brian (quarterback 2004-07).

Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm had an outstanding career at Louisville from 1989 to 1993. He ranks among the Cardinals’ career leaders in touchdown passes. Jeff Brohm also served as an assistant coach at Louisville (quarterbacks coach in 2003-06, assistant head coach/passing game in 2007, and assistant head coach/offensive coordinator in 2008).

Greg Brohm is executive director of administration and operations at Purdue. He was the starting wide receiver during the Cardinals’ 1991 appearance in the Fiesta Bowl, catching passes from his brother, Jeff. Greg served as the director of football operations at Louisville from 2004 to 2008. He also worked in local media and served as an analyst for the Louisville Cardinals’ radio broadcasts.

Brian Brohm is the Co-Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks coach for Purdue… Before there was a Teddy and Lamar it was Brian who led the 2006-7 Cardinals to a 12-1 record, Orange Bowl championship, and a #5 final ranking in the Associated Press poll. His 30 touchdown passes that season is tied for second in school history with 2016 Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson, and one behind Minnesota Vikings’ 2014 first-round draft pick Teddy Bridgewater. Brian is the only Louisville QB to be so close to a National Championship. In my humble opinion, that team was a field goal away from playing for the Title. What could have been that season still haunts me.

During their three seasons together Jeff, Greg, Brian helped lead the Louisville program to 32 wins, Liberty Bowl win, Orange Bowl Championship, Conference USA and Big East championship and twice finished in the Associated Press top 10. And by popular opinion were a field goal away from a possible National Championship. There isn’t anyone who has had a bigger impact on the rise of the Louisville football program than the Brohms.

This family making their way back to the Louisville Football program would not only be the answer it would be the biggest sports story in 2019. I can hear Michael Rapaport narrating the story on College Gameday. If this blog post finds the right audience I hope they understand how big this could be.

The decision that Vince Tyra and the administration make this offseason regarding the current state of Louisville Football could offer up two very different extremes. Keep Coach Petrino and the apathy of this current staff around and open up 2019 in front of a stadium full of empty seats.

Or cut the losses now and go try to convince the first family of Louisville Football to come back home. Have Cardinal Stadium busting at the seams and the College Football World ready to watch how this great story plays out.

I read an article lately talking about how it’s not so much where Louisville Football is now but where it’s heading if things don’t change. It’s time to breath new life into Louisville Football. The same new life that the athletic department and Basketball program got this past year. New energy is good especially if there is a great legacy behind it. Our new AD Vince Tyra is a perfect example of that. I hope he can relate to what a Brohm hire could mean around here.

Of course, all of this is under the assumption that Jeff Brohm and his family would consider coming back to Louisville. I don’t know why they wouldn’t. I know that their hearts are still here. And they do have some unfinished business. If this program wins a National Title someday it would be much better doing it with family.

I’m ready for a change. This year Cardinal Stadium came full circle. Now its time for the Brohm family legacy to come full circle.

This is my plea…

Go Cards!

Season Reboot In The Cards?



Times like these are when I really gain a lot of respect for those guys/gals on the beat writing about college sports as their job. In good times and bad those folks have to meet the deadline. I’ve been struggling to find words since that horrible display of football last Friday night. Funny that it’s been over a week now but still feels like that drubbing just happened yesterday. Georgia Tech just scored again. Sorry!

It has been a long time since I’ve sat thru one like that. I had almost forgotten how bad things can get. As fans, we’ve come a long way since the “The Kragthorpe experiment”. Now if we get a whiff of that type of apathy we lose our minds. It really did scar us. Bobby Petrino is 77-31 as the Louisville head coach and has won over 71% of his games here. He’s 21-14 winning 69% of his ACC games since his return. He has a rough start to this season and we are calling for his head.

Are we jumping the gun here? Is it realistic to think that Bobby would only get one bad season before he was fired? If Ron Cooper and “The Kragthorpe experiment” got three seasons of horrible football isn’t the guy who had us on the doorstep of a National Title entitled to one bad season?

Like I mentioned above I’m scarred. I’m in the ”cut your losses now” camp. I just don’t see the same fire in Coach Petrino’s eyes anymore. He has been a great football coach for us but I’m feeling like it’s time for him to go hang with the grandkids. Move on gracefully. But that isn’t going to happen and I don’t think he’ll get fired either. Even if the Cards can’t get things turned around this season that’s just not in the Cards. His buyout is absurd and he will get a mulligan.

I’m willing to give him that mulligan but would like to see Coach Petrino and this team turn things around this season. The buzz has been good around the program considering. Players seem motivated to get things back on track and even talking a little smack this week with Tu-Tu Atwell calling Boston College’s defense slow. I love the moxie of this true Freshman and this team is full of young guys with this fiery attitude.

Maybe this cake is just taking a little longer to bake. We have just reached the midpoint of this season. Is a reboot in the Cards?

The offense is trending upwards outcome of the games be damned. After a slow start, the Cardinals are finding their stride in the last two weeks. They have averaged 452.0 yards per game in the last two losses. In dropping a game to Georgia Tech last week, the Cardinals totaled a season-best 483 yards, including 370 yards through the air. The Cardinals tied their season high for points with 31 equaling their output In the Indiana State game.

We’ve got some young offensive players trending upward as well. Tu-Tu Atwell is leading the team with an 18.8 yards per catch average the fourth-highest total among freshmen nationally. In the last two games, Atwell has caught six passes for 132 yards and two scores, averaging 22.0 yards per catch. He had a career-long 53-yard catch against Florida State. Hassan Hall totaled 194 all-purpose yards in the loss to Georgia Tech. That’s the most all purpose yards by a true freshman since Lamar Jackson had 226 all-purpose yards in the 2015 Music City Bowl. Hall carried the ball five times for 23 yards and caught a personal high four catches for 33 yards.

Puma has excelled in his last two starts, going 47 for 80 for 605 yards and four touchdowns. And he didn’t throw an interception for the first time this season in the last game. In the last three games, Dez Fitzpatrick has caught 13 passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 12.7 yards a reception. After catching eight passes in the first four games, Jaylen Smith is second on the team with 16 receptions for a team-high 266 yards and one score. He ranks 69th nationally with his 16.6 yards per catch average. Rodjay Burns has provided a spark in the return game. The Louisville native ranks ninth nationally and is second in the ACC in punt return average, posting a 16.4 yards per return mark.

The offense is showing some signs of life. It is the Louisville Defense that will have to get it together for this team to turn things around. The Yellow Jackets hung six rushing touchdowns on the Cards last Friday, averaging a whopping 8.3 yards per play. The defense has some hungry guys. P.J. Blue is starting to make an impact. In the last three games as a starter, Blue has been credited with 19 stops.
Khane Pass and Nick Okeke are both coming off of their best games of the season with 8 tackles each in the last outing.

We’ve got some guys to make plays on defense but they have to be put in the right situations for that to happen. This is where the disconnect is right now. Louisville has not recorded a sack in the last two games, and through six games, the Cardinals have only registered two interceptions in 131 pass attempts. Through six games, the Cardinals are -9 in turnover margin turning the ball over 14 times, while just causing four miscues.
Will VanGorder be able to close this gap?

Louisville fans are losing their minds right now. But here at the midway point, we all need to take a collective breath. A total of 14 freshmen have made their collegiate debuts this season and the Cardinals are playing the 2018 season with one of the nation’s smallest senior classes with just 11 dotting the roster. It’s not like we are playing with house money folks.

I think this season can still be salvaged and the reboot can start on Saturday in Boston.
Go Cards!

Blackout: A tale of two Bobby’s


About 12 years ago I hit a pretty good stride in my life. I had just met the girl who became my wife and got the job that I still hold to this day. 2006 was a great year for me and a year that played a big part in where I am today. There was another guy hitting his stride in 2006 and Bobby Petrino had my Louisville Cardinals Football team on the cusp of College Football greatness.

Sports writers found all kinds of creative ways to describe what was then (and might still be) the most hyped game in Louisville’s history. Even with the Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs, Louisville football was the biggest story in town that week. I remember some of the local news guys doing live feeds from inside an empty (then) Papa Johns Cardinal Stadium on that cold November 2nd morning before the game.

By nighttime, a crowd of over 43,000 fans packed the stands, (a record crowd at that time) most of them were wearing black to take part in what Louisville Football promoted as a “blackout.” First Blackout promotion of Bobby Petrino’s career. He really hit peak Bobby Petrino that night when his team beat #3 WVU ending their 14 game win streak and propelling the Cardinals into BCS Title Talk.

“We keep track of our run-pass ratio. We wanted to stay aggressive and our players like to play that brand of football.”

“If we only score 28 points, we feel like we’re struggling. Our guys are very motivated to be No. 1 in the nation in total offense.”

These are few of Coach Petrino’s quotes from that game… Man those were the days. He was a coach that wanted to beat you and wanted to score a hundred points doing it. I loved watching that brand of Louisville football. After that first Blackout game, the Cardinals were 8-0 celebrating the biggest win in school history. A win that vaulted the Cardinals into the heart of the national championship race that year.

We all know the story too well on how that season ended… Looking back at it now everything really started to unravel for Bobby Petrino after that November night in 2006. His BCS Championship hopes vanished in New Jersey. He left Louisville on the first train out of town to the NFL after that season. An experiment that didn’t end very well for him. Then he got his shot coaching in the mighty SEC only to have his infatuation with SEX ruin that coaching stop.

But everyone loves a good comeback story and at the Blackout game on Labor Day in 2014, it looked like we were all going to have a front row seat to one. Our Cardinals beat Miami on that Monday night 31 to 13. The victory provided a successful Atlantic Coast Conference debut for the Cardinals and to Bobby Petrino’s second coaching stint at the school.

There was a lot of similarity to his first Blackout game at Louisville that night. The hype and all… The Cardinals took the field under the lights in all-black uniforms with matching chrome helmets to thunderous cheers from a record crowd of 55,428, all but a few dressed in black. 31 points! That Bobby offense was back. The hype was back.

Maybe the Louisville Football program and Coach Petrino are trying to recapture some of that Blackout game magic announcing the promotion this week. But the hype is gone. Sports writers are just trying to find the motivation to write about this game. There won’t be any live feeds from an empty Cardinal Stadium on Friday morning. The stadium might be empty at game time Friday night. A Blackout game in Louisville used to be the hottest ticket in town. Even eclipsing horse racing royalty one time. This week I’ve got alerts every day from a ticket app on my I-phone about ticket prices being slashed.

The Cards won’t be playing Friday night to be in the conversation of College Football’s elite. Instead, the loser of this one will be considered one of College Football’s worst. A harsh reminder for this College sports fan that things can change quickly and boy things have changed around here quickly. But hey I’m still a sucker for a good comeback story. Maybe there is some magic left in those Black uniforms.

“If we win out, there’s no way they should leave us out.”

Running back Kolby Smith said that after a program-changing win in that first Blackout game in 2006. Now he is the Louisville Running Backs coach. I’d love to see his group come to life on Friday night. Freshman RB Hassan Hall looked like a younger version of his coach in the game against Florida State. And I’d love to see WR’s Jaylen Smith and Dez Fitzpatrick channel some of that Mario Urrutia and Harry Douglas magic of Blackout old. Maybe Puma can channel some of that Will Gardner swagger from that game in 2014.

2006 was a good year for Bobby Petrino and it is the reason he is where he is today. Brought back in and given an ironclad contract by Tom Jurich. I’m sure he thought he’d see Coach Petrino recapture some of that fire. He wasn’t ready to throw in the towel on an old friend and I’m not ready to throw in the towel folks. But we need to see some signs of life from that guy who used to want to score a hundred points. I am a sucker for a good comeback story. I want this team to succeed and will be cheering my ass off for them on Friday night.

Go Cards!

(photos in this story courtesy GoCards.com)

GAMEDAY: The rain stopped, but will clouds remain over Cardinal Stadium


There are a lot of good vibes circulating thru the Cardinal faithful after an unbelievable night down at 4th Street Live. I would like to see some of that mojo passed along to the Louisville Football team on Saturday afternoon. It seems like it has rained for weeks but the skies have finally cleared. There is still a cloud of doubt looming over Cardinal Stadium.

Coach Petrino said in his weekly press conference: ”we went back and watched the Alabama game and we played harder and faster versus Alabama than we did at Virginia.”
I think they played harder and faster in that Alabama game than in any game they ’ve played this season. This Louisville Football team landed in Orlando world Beaters and I think it was too much too fast for the Psych of this young and rather inexperienced group.

I think this Coaching staff believed and I think this team believed in themselves. I’d never seen a more confident group in my six years doing Media Day. Taking the loss the way they did to Alabama not only derailed this team it also derailed this coaching staff. This is one of those times when playing a Goliath right out of the gate backfired.

This team would have benefited from opening up against an FCS program like Indiana State. This team needed to ease their way into the season but they were thrust head-on into a steamroller. I’m not making excuses for them. I really believe this. Bama broke us… The question now is what is the coaching staff going to do to fix us. Can they fix it?

The Cardinals have also had their fair share of bad luck with key guys going down with injuries on both sides of the ball. Three of the best defensive players have missed time. And the running backs have been banged up. Just when Dae Wiliams started to show glimpses of being that dominant player everyone was clamoring over at Spring practice a few years ago he suffered a deep thigh bruise. Another set back for a guy who has had a few of them.

There are reports of a coming to Jesus moment this week in preparation for Florida State. Coach Summers believes his O-Line has figured things out again, and there was word of a team meeting. I think it’s important for this team to get their mind right but they’ll also have to figure out how to score with just 17 points in the two losses. The Louisville defense hasn’t been great but they haven’t been horrible all things considered. If the offense could give them a little run support who knows.

Florida State’s season has gone pretty much the same way. They have had key injuries on both sides of the ball. Their offensive line has really suffered. And it shows in the win/loss column. The Seminoles’ two losses have come against good team defense in Syracuse and Virginia Tech, which might explain why they only put up 10 points between the pair of outings.

There are so many resources in Tallahassee and they have a young guy in Willie Taggart who is going to figure it out pretty quick. I just hope it’s another few weeks before he does. I look for him to use those tight end sets and try to pound the ball against a banged up Louisville Defensive front. Cam Akers led the rush attack last week for them with 22 carries for 64 yards and a TD. We might get Robert Hicks and Dorian Ethridge back. But will they be 100%?

Who knows what the Louisville offense will look like on Saturday. The weather in Louisville has been more consistent than Coach Petrino’s playbook. If things start to go south we could see all 3 Louisville QB’s. I wouldn’t mind seeing Jordan Travis get a shot if Puma doesn’t find his groove. Who knows when we will ever see the Louisville receivers show up again. I think those Bama DB’s pulled some mortal combat shit and stole their souls.

I’m ready to rally around the Louisville Football team. I’ve been ready to rally around them. They have to throw us a bone on Saturday. A fan base usually has a pretty weak Psyche as well. I don’t know how much more Louisville Football fans can take. Lose this game and things could officially go off the rails. But come out and beat a quality program in FSU and it could be just what the Dr. Ordered to get this team back on track.

Louisville tradition thrives at 4th Street Live



I just got home from the Louisville Basketball event at 4th Street Live. I can tell you after being in the middle of an estimated 7000 screaming Cardinal fans that Louisville Basketball is still very much alive.

I had my 6-year-old son with me tonight. In his six years on this earth, we have celebrated some great milestones at 4th Street Live. Together we’ve not only had our own tradition thrive there but have also watched the University of Louisville athletic program thrive.

The ACC Celebration, the 2013 National Championship celebration and six years ago the Final Four celebration. My son had just been born and I had him in a frenzy of Cardinal fans that day. I had never seen Louisville Basketball more alive. Seven months ago I thought it would be a long time before I’d ever see it that alive again.

Enter a young, hungry and passionate coach from Cincinnati Ohio. A guy with a blue-collar work ethic and a heart to match. So much of what I do is for my son. I want to leave that legacy and pass on my passion for Louisville Sports and the tradition of it all. I believe much of what Chris Mack does is for his family. And all that adds up to one special Coach.

Louisville Celebrations down at 4th Street Live are kind of a tradition for me and my son now. Again tonight I had him in a frenzy of Louisville fans down there. I felt that excitement in the air. I haven’t seen this much or felt this much excitement in a long time.

Coach Mack immediately embraced the tradition of Louisville Basketball and he has revived the spirit of Louisville Basketball. I hope he understands what that means to folks around here. I hope he knows what that means to me. Tonight I felt that passion for Louisville Basketball again. It felt very much like that day back in April of 2012. The Sports tradition I share with my son thrives and the Tradition of Louisville Basketball will continue to thrive.

It was a great night at the Louisville Live event. I think we ushered in what will be an exciting time for the Basketball program. Kudos to the Sports Marketing folks for putting this thing together. I can only imagine how much bigger it will be next time.

Go Cards!


Me and my family at the Final Four Celebration in 2012


Me and My main man tonight at Louisville Live

GameDay… Next man Up.


Next man up has kinda been the theme of this young football season for our Louisville Cardinals. Guys stepping up on the offense and defensive side of the ball when called on. You might feel like this Louisville team is struggling and in some aspects they are. But the young guys on this football team are flourishing.

With 129 yards rushing in the last game Malik Cunningham had one of the highest single-game rushing totals ever by a Louisville QB. In his first career start at linebacker, Robert Hicks led the Cardinals in tackles with 11 against WKU. He is the first Cardinal to do that since Dorian Ethridge last season. While freshman defensive end Jarrett Jackson had three tackles and the game-winning sack. He showed a lot of promise for a second straight week.

When these young Cardinals ran off the field last Saturday night they carried a lot of enthusiasm into the locker room. Even tho it was only a win over Western Kentucky they appeared to have some of that swagger back I had seen glimpses of on the field in Orlando. It’s going to take another big effort from these young guys on Saturday afternoon in Charlottesville.

The Cardinals open up their 5th season against a Virginia team that is currently 2-1 as well, with a loss to Indiana 20-16 sandwiched in between wins over Richmond 42-13 and Ohio 45-31. In that Ohio game, Virginia QB Bryce Perkins had a solid outing with 379 yards and three scores, while Jordan Ellis posted three more scores and 171 yards on the ground. Olamide Zaccheaus went off for 247 yards and two TDs to lead the Cavs in receiving.

The Virginia offense has another dimension to it this season with the ability of Perkins to make plays with his legs. But make no mistake about it this guy can also do some damage with his arm. Louisville 85th in total defense, 94th in rushing defense and 56th in passing defense will have a special challenge ahead of them in week four. They need to be aggressive enough to keep this offense in front of them but not be too aggressive overrunning their coverage. If Louisville can keep Perkins in check on the ground, and CBs Rodjay Burns and P.J. Mbanasor both very fast and talented can keep this defense from getting beat on the outside I really like our chances. Virginia is 13th nationally in converting third downs. The Louisville defense has to get off the field on Saturday.

The mobile QB has been the Virginia Defense Kryptonite. And with a steady dose of Cunningham and Dae Williams I think this Louisville team will find the end zone a few times. And I’d like to see our WR’s come to life this week as I think they could pose a real challenge for the Virginia secondary. Virginia Coach Bronco Mendenhall said after their game against Ohio last week: “Our secondary is not playing consistently, but Bryce [Hall] and Darrius Bratton are,” “Our safety play is inconsistent. Our corner play is actually consistent.” If Cunningham and Williams can establish the run and force the Virginia secondary up into tight coverage I really like our chances of beating them with the deep ball. Dez Fitzpatrick, Seth Dawkins, sand Jaylen Smith can sure talk a mean game. Now its time to play one.

I’m really hoping to see an inspired team performance on Saturday afternoon. With conference play getting started its gut check time for both the veterans and rookies on this Louisville football team. If they answer the call in the conference opener it could give them some great momentum moving forward. If not it could be a long season. Can’t wait for another exciting day of College football. L’s Up and go cards…

Out with the old, In with the new, and a little Déjà vu


Coach Petrino said after the game last night: “We didn’t play well at all. But the one thing that helped us at halftime is that we had some guys with good attitudes and they worked hard and found a way to win.”

You can be negative about the coaching and it’s ok to be upset that things appear to be in some disarray with Louisville Football. Just remember that there are young men busting their ass every day and who busted their ass last night to make sure the Cardinals didn’t lose this game against WKU.

I’m not happy things aren’t working out like we had all expected them to all offseason. I had very high hopes for this team and for this season. There are no more excuses and some of the things this team did last night are not what we have been used to. As fans, it’s time to put our big boy/girl pants on and support the players on this team who are trying their best under some obvious disarray.

If not for the guys in the locker room who gave it their all last night we’d be sitting here today with a loss to WKU. We’d be no better than Kentucky who got their tails whipped by the Hilltoppers a few seasons ago. And have a two-game losing streak to them. We’ll just leave that right there. I digress.

My point being. We got guys in that locker room busting their asses for this program, this team, and the fans. Guys like Jarrett Jackson who came in making big plays including the game-winning sack and Robert Hicks who led the team with 11 tackles last night. These young men were in high school last year folks. Our defense is banged up. These guys stepped up. That’s big for this team moving forward.

On the offensive end of the ball, things are really in disarray. Strange territory for Coach Petrino. But now he will pull out his book of tricks from the past two seasons and start game planning around a young and dynamic new starting QB. If you aren’t excited after watching Malik Cunningham the last two weekends there is no hope for you. There were moments on that field last night when I experienced Déjà vu. This young man is the real deal folks. Our season is not lost.

It was great seeing Dae Williams come back into his own last night. He’s a great athlete but an even better person. With 63 yards and 2 TDs he just took over in the 4th quarter and started running over guys. Back a few summers ago during practice and before he got hurt Dae Williams was such a presence and so dominating (just busting thru guys) that he had everyone’s attention. Haven’t seen media guys so giddy at a practice as that day. Dae Williams is for real folks. Our season is not lost.

We have a solid offensive line (they still have their moments), and two very athletic and physically superior athletes in our backfield. And I think our receivers finally come around with the leadership of Malik Cunningham. This gives Bobby something to work with. I’m optimistic he figures it out. We still get 8 wins and beat the Cayuts ass…

As a side note, I do feel really bad for Jawon Pass. I don’t know what’s going on with the young man and hope he figures things out. Card Nation has been super supportive to him and we need to continue that. I hope he keeps battling.

It was miserable at times but I managed to find some enjoyment in last night. I like watching young guys take advantage of an opportunity and the new stadium expansion is incredible. It adds a lot to the game day experience. Can’t wait for the Florida State game. Go Cards!

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First the Tide, Then a Tropical Storm first two weeks of Louisville Football have been a wash



First the Tide, Then a Tropical Storm the first two weeks of Louisville Football have been a wash.

We had such a build-up to the start of the Louisville Football season. So much build-up that the head coach was predicting a victory against college footballs best team. The players seemed confident and even started the game in Orlando with a little swagger in their step.

They were playing some good football. Puma looked poised, the Oline blocked, the running backs were running downhill, TE’s looked good, WR’s running crisp routes and even the defense made some good plays. Things seemed to be going as expected for about a quarter then the wheels started to fall off. So much so that the coaches were having gaffs.

After that game, I was able to put things into some perspective taking into account that they did play the first game of the season against the Tide. We did some things well, and it was a game to build on. Our young guys got hit in the jaw and didn’t respond well.

Heading into the Indiana State game I expected the monsoon rains and knew it would be a student body left, student body right kind of night. Not very entertaining but expected a solid win. I did not expect the breakdowns on offense, and I sure didn’t expect to see the Indiana State O-Line housing our D-Line at times. Knocking them off the ball.

I expected inconsistency with yet another new coaching change but come on… how are you controlling the line of scrimmage on downs against the likes of Alabama one week and losing that battle to an FCS school the next week. Doesn’t add up. Or does it all add up?

Did opening up the season against such a dominating opponent backfire? Did some of these young guys have that confidence tested too early? Did they completely put the last one behind them when heading into the game week with Indiana State? Did the torrential downpours affect the offense that much? To look that bad? Was the Louisville defensive front that beat up and did the weather affect their gameplay?

I’m willing to call it a wash.

That’s right… these last two weeks have been a blur. Louisville fans drove 13 hours to watch the season opener and then had to set thru a monsoon for the home opener. The expansion did not get the appreciation it deserved and we didn’t even get a Card March.

I don’t imagine that these first two weeks have been great for the players either. They did get knocked down to size pretty good in that first game. Confidence was shaken. Then they don’t get a Card March and have to sludge thru a monsoon all night against an FCS school in the home opener. Not much fun at all. They did enough to get the job done and did have some pep in their step to end a miserable night.

I’m excited about this weekend. I liked what I saw out of Malik Cunningham Saturday night. If you paid attention at the Spring Game you know his game is very Lamar’esque. Bobby will now have a few more options. And this could give Puma a little nudge. He has to be the leader of this team Tide or monsoon be damned… It’s good to know that there is someone ready to step up if he doesn’t. Don’t think we have a QB controversy yet. I like what Jeremy Smith brings to this team. He hasn’t missed a step.

Our defense is beaten up. The best player Jonathan Greenard is out indefinitely after injuring his wrist against Bama, and Dorian Etheridge suffered an ankle sprain against Indiana State. A lot of tackles here.

I’m beginning to worry that issues go much deeper than a few injuries on this side of the ball. Charlie Strong built a defensive culture so strong that it lasted up to Grantham’s last season. He was able to use Strong’s mojo for a few seasons. I’m worried about the current culture. Too much turnover and not enough consistency has left a big hole. Coach VanGorder is getting paid handsomely and he has some athletes so I’m not giving up hope yet.

This could be a week for guys to gain some confidence and more experience. Like Jarrett Jackson. This dude wears #8 and his last name is Jackson. He was No. 56 on ESPN’s Top 300 defensive linemen list and one of the top high school defensive lineman in Florida a season ago. Jackson has 7 assisted tackles this season. Guys like Amonte Caban and Tabarius Peterson. They both were trending upward at the end of last season.

Michael Boykin and Derek Dorsey could use another game before heading into the conference grind. Boykin is still adjusting to the speed of things. He was dominating in Juco last year. Dorsey has a mean streak about him but needs to be in right spot. GG Robinson has to step up and lead with Greenard out. GG can be a beast and has 7 solo tackles in the first two weeks. This defense is wet behind the ears and not from the rain last week.

I know that a hurricane is barreling up the east coast. But weather should not be an issue this Saturday night when the Cardinals play WKU. It should be an awesome night for a football game. I expect the tailgating lots to be packed early, I expect a great Card March, I expect the place to be packed, and I expect the expansion to get the crowd it deserves. I hope Louisville plays better and shows some promise. We will know a lot more about this team after Saturday night. Even though these last two weeks have been a wash I still have hope the season won’t be.

Go Cards!