New Card Chris Jones National Junior College POY!

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

 photo 085B52B7-90D4-4E81-905B-04446F0F37EE-3795-00000479BF9C2E1A_zpsfb088421.jpg

Junior college basketball is on the rise and is proving to be a valuable vehicle to gain experience, get more exposure and get things in order academically. Future Card Chris Jones has got everything he wanted and more from his time at Northwest Florida State College. He had a staff that had plenty of Division I experience, some of the best facilities in the country and national notoriety. In his first season Jones helped guide Northwest Florida State to a 29-1 regular-season record and a National Runner-Up finish in the NJCAA DI National Tournament. Along the way, he averaged 18 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists per game and garnered Florida Panhandle Conference Player of the Year honors.

The future Cards point guard was second in the nation in scoring this season averaging 22.7 points per game. He had another incredible year and led his NWF State team to its second straight trip to the NJCAA National Tournament in Hutchinson, Kansas and earned his second Florida Panhandle Conference Player of the Year award. Jones led Northwest Florida State to a 62-6 record in his two years and he has won many accolades during his time on the Juco level including being unanimously chosen as the #1 overall Juco player in the country by several months ago. Today he added another honor to those accolades by being named the 2012-13 NABC National Junior College Player of the Year.

NWF’s Head Coach Steve Forbes: “He is the ‘straw that stirs the drink”. “He’s been a facilitator for others and has made big baskets for our team throughout the year. His passion and his will to win has rubbed off on the rest of our team. It’s always a blessing when your best player is your hardest worker and he is our hardest worker.” “He never lost a home game while he was playing here. I think that pretty much sums up what kind of player he really is. He’s a winner.”

I wrote an article a few days ago about how I thought that Terry Rozier would play an important role on the team next year in their bid to repeat as National Champions. I don’t think he will be alone in those efforts as I look for Chris Jones to be a major contributor during his first year in a Cardinal uniform. This guy will have a huge impact on the already veteran Louisville team.

“Teddy QB” A Top Pick In 2014 Draft?

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Last week Teddy Bridgewater made news when he landed on an early prestigious list for Heisman candidates. Today he is making news again for being at the top of another list. Several folks came out today with their 2014 NFL Draft predictions. And our guy Teddy QB was considered the first pick on two of those list and the eighth pick on the other. It’s obvious by all of the pre-season hype that Teddy made a giant leap in status from his freshman to sophomore year and if he continues on that path of improvement there’s no question that next year in NYC we will be hearing his name called first. Below are Teddy’s spots on the list and what the analyst had to say about him.

-2014 NFL Draft: Top 30 college football players to watch this fall
Bucky Brooks
Analyst, and NFL Network

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

You can read the entire article here at

-2014 NFL mock draft: Teddy Bridgewater, Jadeveon Clowney lead the way
By Dan Kadar “SBNation”

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

You can read the entire article here at

-Early 2014 NFL Draft Rankings
Braden Gall Athlon Sports

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

You can read the rest of the article here at

Offensive coordinator Shawn Watson has five areas where he thinks his QB can improve next season and these things could also help his draft status.
Reach at least 70 percent completion percentage, become the No. 1 team in America in red zone efficiency, convert at least 50 percent on third down, work on becoming an even better game manager and work on becoming a more vocal leader. I know I’m getting excited to see Teddy this season and have no doubt in my mind that he will improve in those areas and take his game to an even more elite level.

Pitino Presser, Pre-Season Polls, And More…

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

 photo 853BE115-6DAB-452D-98D4-574F2E4F4170-2537-0000037625E5F3C7_zps8b6fa998.jpg

Today was a busy news day for Louisville athletics and it started off with the Rick Pitino press conference where he introduced his new assistant coach Mike Balado. Rick talked about how it was important to keep the chemistry as well as the consistency of his coaching staff going forward, and said that it was a well thought out process hiring a new assistant. Coach Balado is fluent in the Spanish language and he hopes to be able to connect with recruits on the international stage that want to play in the United States. I think it is great that the coaching staff is thinking outside of the box, and hope to keep getting guys like Fransico Garcia and Edgar Sosa.

Coach Pitino on new assistant: “We’ve had great chemistry the last three years with our staff. We took our time hiring with this position.”

Coach Pitino: “By hiring Mike, who worked for Richard, I happened to watch Mike work on a number of occasions…It was an easy hire for me.”

Coach Pitino: “Mike is also fluent in Spanish…We’re already recruiting some Hispanic ball players.”

Assistant Coach Balado: “A lot of young kids on the international stage want to come to the United States. I’m excited to give them that opportunity.”

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Coach Pitino also mentioned at his press conference that Luke Hancock and Russ Smith will be team captains next season and talked about a few of the guys and mentioned what he thought their roles on the team will be next season. I found it interesting that he mentioned how Montrezl Harrell was the one he has seen in the gym the most. I think that kid is gonna take his game to a whole new level and will end up being one of the best players on the floor next season. Coach also talked about how recruiting had always been a little challenging because of the competition he had on the team but says that with the recent success of the program that recruiting has gotten much easier and feels like kids are more attracted to Louisville now. The schedule was mentioned in the press conference and Coach Pitino talked about how we would be in some limbo next year due to us having to play in a make shift league before entering the ACC in 2014. We do have UK, UNC and it was hinted that IU may also be on next years slate.

Coach Pitino: “Luke Hancock and Russ Smith will be captains next year.”

Coach Pitino: “Chane is kind of the Pied Piper on the basketball team…Chane’s the guy that rallies the troops.”

Coach Pitino: “To accomplish our goals we needed Russ to score. And now Russ knows we don’t need that anymore.”

Coach Pitino: “Montrezl has probably been the player in the gym the most right now. These guys are very hungry.”

Coach Pitino: “Recruiting for us is never easy because of the competition we have. But it’s become easier because of our brand & success we’ve had.”

Coach Pitino: “Next year will be in limbo a little bit…but it will still be a very very competitive league.”

Coach Pitino: “The schedule going forward is great for our fans…It’s going to be really great for other sports as well joining the ACC.”

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Coach Pitino ended his press conference today talking about how great the last three years has been for the basketball program and how he hoped that the run can continue into the future. With it being Derby week Coach had to talk about his horses and the run for the roses this weekend. He also mentioned that we might be hearing about a horse being named for another popular basketball player “Three Point Luke.” I do like that name a lot!

Coach Pitino on what this week is like for him: “I haven’t experienced the horse part yet…I’m hoping to get out there Wednesday morning.”

Coach Pitino on horse Siva: “Siva is going to run Wednesday.”

Coach Pitino on the Derby: “The Derby is a lot of traffic. And sometimes the best horses don’t win the Derby. The horse in the least amount of trouble wins.”

Coach Pitino ends press conference by welcoming Mike Balado. He also thanks media: “It’s been a fun 3 years and we hope it can continue for long time.”

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

 photo 5AF8EDA1-F557-41AA-85B9-EB0250B784C7-5528-000004DE46845486_zpsb1d4851e-1_zpsa1c7ff82.jpg

Coach Pitino mentioned in his press conference today that the Cards would face UNC next year. Louisville and North Carolina will headline the 2013 Hall of Fame Tip-Off tournament. The tournament is put on by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and will be played for the third season at the Mohegan Sun arena in Connecticut. The tournament also will include Fairfield, Hartford, Richmond, Holy Cross, Hofstra, and Belmont. The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame’s Tip-Off Tournament features college basketball’s top programs. For twenty-five years, the Tip-Off Classic was the inaguaral start of the college hoops season. For the past several years, the Tip-Off Tournament, delivers top ranked basketball in November. Last year No. 3 Ohio State beat Washington in the championship game of the season’s tournament. The 2011 tournament was won by eventual national champion Kentucky.

For more information on the 2013 Hall of Fame Tip Off visit website here:

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Today and came out with their early pre-season college basketball polls for next year. I usually don’t get too excited about these early polls but when they have The University of Kentucky ranked #1 and The University of Louisville ranked #2 that will get a rise. I had a dermatology appointment today and even the Doctor and I shared a little fan fodder about the looming 2014 basketball season. He was a UK fan and I’m just glad he was gentle. I don’t agree that a group of untested AAU studs should be ranked ahead of a group of grizzled veterans but do agree that both teams do deserve to be in the top 5 entering next season. Just hard to imagine any media members not having the defending champs at the top to start the season. I just don’t understand the logic behind it not being like that. But who knows maybe they will see the light and change their minds as the summer wears on.

Here is our ranking and what they had to say:

 photo 63BF2B2E-BED6-499A-BDFB-8185A078B419-2537-000003764D7F2079_zps5be4bf9c.jpg

 photo BFBF1D0A-C638-4C21-8296-CBB2E3346205-2537-0000037637192754_zpsd5ca5351.jpg

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

There was also another pre-season poll that came out today and unlike the basketball poll the school down the road isn’t in this conversation. released their early top 25 football poll today and our Louisville Cards are ranked 4th. This is great news especailly if the polls end up looking like this to start the season. Even with the weak schedule one has to think that if the football team goes undefeated starting the season in the top 5 that they will get the shot to play in the main Bowl Game. How awesome would it be to play in that game? Below is the ranking and what they had to say about our upcoming football season.

 photo 6BA6658D-3D0D-4CE6-A4C8-C43CEB797F6C-2537-000003763EE85DC5_zps8db2318a.jpg

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Like I said earlier Cards fans, it was a pretty busy day in the Cardinal Nation. It is great to share in the enjoyment and excitement of one of the greatest athletic programs in the country. And I’m looking forward to another exciting sports year to get under way. GO CARDS!


Kevin Ware’s Night On The Town

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

 photo 47124C54-8413-45E8-B7E2-650F25AE4DE4-1936-0000028FA0A53115_zpsd7e5de46.jpg

In the wake of his terrible injury, Kevin Ware has had an outpouring of support from people in all walks of life. And this past weekend he got to meet some of those folks as he was invited to the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Ware received his invite to the dinner from CNN. He got to hang out with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, congressional leaders, some of the nation’s top news-makers and members of the Washington press corps. Kevin was dressed for success and he represented Louisville very well. This was a great opportunity for him and if anyone deserves it, he does. If Kevin doesn’t end up making his living playing basketball I don’t think he would have any trouble finding a job and Senator Kevin Ware does have a nice ring to it. Way to go Kevin, you make us all very proud.

 photo BD8E3F74-0604-4DC3-8BFC-94C5EF8A2721-1936-0000028F960D5EAC_zps14745b26.jpg

 photo 9C5A4BAD-A38D-4DCC-A1B6-B18B0C8BE8A1-1936-0000028F8ED18A2B_zps0dcfcb64.jpg

 photo 7308A68D-5E3B-4E50-83EA-EA201C39BF14-1936-0000028F83664618_zps72d6fd54.jpg

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

 photo DAC5F523-07FA-4064-875E-2A5D95EB2E8C-1936-0000028F7035BD97_zpscc89958f.jpg

 photo 1A20AB93-DAF8-4633-BDA8-DC88E153AA93-1936-0000029C6C7B1F21_zpsdd1affac.jpg

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Future Card Turning Heads At EYBL

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

I knew that when Shaqquan Aaron committed to play for the Cards back in February that we had landed a very solid early recruit for the class of 2014. Aaron finished up his high school season a few months ago by leading Seattle Rainier Beach High School to win the Washington Class 3-A state championship. That is the same school that produced NBA players Doug Christie, Jamal Crawford, Nate Robinson and former Cardinal Terrence Williams, to name a few.

Now that his high school season is over Aaron has hit the AAU circuit and played this past weekend in the Nike Elite Youth Basketball stop at the Boo Williams Sportsplex. He was creating some buzz among the scouts that were there watching the game, and among those watching Aaron this weekend was his future coach Rick Pitino. On Saturday, Aaron’s team the Seattle Rotary club lost both its games, but he played well showing off his skill and versatility. He had 17 points in the morning session with Pitino present for the entire game. He had 16 points in the evening session where he showed off his long range skills hitting four 3-pointers.

Shaqquan is one of the most talented and versatile 2014 prospects on the West Coast and in the nation as a whole. He is ranked #34 by Scout, #15 by 247sports, #31 by Rivals and #51 by ESPN. He spent his first year at Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei. He was home-schooled as a sophomore and did not play high school basketball. He just did transfer to Rainier Beach for this basketball season and when head coach Mike Bethea had the chance to see him play for the first time only one word came to mind “Wow.” I think Aaron had a lot of folks going wow this past weekend and I look forward to many wow moments from him in a Cardinal uniform.

Reggie Rankin of ESPN WRITES:
Aaron brings versatility to Louisville
“Aaron is an extra long and lean guard/forward. He excels in transition by getting to the rim or spotting up for the open 3-pointer. In the half-court set Aaron has the length to shoot over small defenders with range to the arc. He also can go by his defender with quick first-step slashes and pull-up jumpers. He finishes with length as opposed to strength at this stage of his game. He can rebound and ignite the break with his ability to bust out dribble and is a tip-in threat on the offensive class. Aaron is also a very capable multiple-position perimeter defender. He will need to continue to add strength but his versatility and upside are tremendous.”

Alex Kline of gave the Cardinals Beak this exclusive comment: “Rick Pitino continues to dominate the Pacfic West Coast. He’s landed Terrance Williams and Peyton Siva in the past. Both were success stories for the Cardinals. Shaqquan Aaron should be the same with his versatility, scoring ability and court vision. He should create great mismatches.”

Here is some video of Shaqquan Aaron:

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos


Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

The 2013 HeismanPundit/ Heisman Trophy Watch List (post-spring edition) was released today and as many expected our very own Teddy Bridgewater is on the list of candidates for the prestigious award. This prestigious annual list gives football fans an early glimpse at the great crop of Heisman contenders for the coming season. This year’s post-spring watch contains 28 players.

Last season Bridgewater spiked statistically in virtually every measurable way, matching the sport’s elite players. In terms of stats, he ranked eighth in yards per attempt and QB rating. He went from throwing an interception every 24.7 passes to one every 52.4 throws, his TD-to-INT ratio going from 14-to-12 to 27-to-8. Suddenly, the word efficiency was something that became synonymous with Bridgewater’s play. In his non-conference games against two SEC opponents Kentucky and Florida and future ACC rival North Carolina, Bridgewater completed 62 of 81 passes for 777 yards, with five touchdowns and one pick. -(ESPN)

Bridgewater’s results: a 160.0 QB rating, 13 yards per completion and a 70.4 completion percentage.

The Heisman Trophy, presented annually since 1935, is the most prestigious award in sports. It is named after famed college football coach John W. Heisman. The 2013 winner will be announced in New York on Saturday, Dec. 14.

Here’s the first list of candidates:

Ameer Abdullah, Jr., RB, Nebraska

David Ash, Jr., QB, Texas

Blake Bell, Jr., QB, Oklahoma

Tajh Boyd, Sr., QB, Clemson

Teddy Bridgewater, Jr., QB, Louisiville

Ka’deem Carey, Jr., RB, Arizona

Derek Carr, Sr., QB, Fresno State

Jadeveon Clowney, Jr., DE, South Carolina

Stefon Diggs, So., WR, Maryland

Cody Fajardo, Jr., QB, Nevada

David Fales, Sr., QB, San Jose State

Devin Gardner, Jr., QB, Michigan

Everett Golson, So., QB, Notre Dame

Todd Gurley, So., RB, Georgia

Kevin Hogan, So., QB, Stanford

Brett Hundley, So., QB, UCLA

Duke Johnson, So., RB, Miami

Marqise Lee, Jr., WR, USC

Jordan Lynch, Sr., QB, Northern Illinois

Johnny Manziel, So., QB, Texas A&M

Marcus Mariota, So., QB, Oregon

Venric Mark, Sr., RB, Northwestern

Taylor Martinez, Sr., QB, Nebraska

AJ McCarron, Sr., QB, Alabama

Aaron Murray, Sr., QB, Georgia

Braxton Miller, Jr., QB, Ohio State

Lache Seastrunk, Jr., RB, Baylor

De’Anthony Thomas, Jr., RB, Oregon

TJ Yeldon, So., RB, Alabama

You can read more about the Heisman here and keep up with the updates through the season.


Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

 photo Untitled-41-1-1-1-1-2-7-3_zps322fbe341111_zps42c0a104.jpg

Tonight is wasn’t about basketball and Luke Hancock and Stephan Van Treese were shooting for another goal. Tonight it was about saving lives and helping others.

It is always very refreshing to see people band together for something greater than themselves or to try to do something to change the world we live in. Especially in this what have you done for me lately society. Cancer has affected the lives of many people in this world and often takes the ones we love. I dream of a world with a cure and hope that someday I will get to see it. Tonight some very special young men gave their time and their beards to help make that dream a reality. Luke Hancock and Stephan Van Treese both took their turns tonight in the barber chair and the facial hair turned to gold as they help raise over eight thousand dollars for the American Cancer Society. That money will help them keep the research for a cure alive. I would like to personally thank Luke, Stephan and all the Cardinal athletes that helped with this as well as the members of Card Nation that donated the money.

 photo 6B84F26B-956F-4AF6-8EEB-2195C2D15192-11322-00000AA49CAB2C25_zpsca2109df.jpg

If you still want to donate to this worthy cause there is still time to do so and you can click here to find out how you can make a difference.

You can also check out the video of the event below.


Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

 photo Russsss_zps5422e46e.jpg

Russ watch 2013 has come to an end today as Card Nation found out that the dynamic and energetic player will return to Louisville for his senior season. I’m very happy that he decided to come back and think he will really benefit from staying another year in college. Russ has been a pleasure to watch and to write about over the last couple of seasons. He played a big part in our back-to-back final four runs and his relentless effort on the basketball court along with his freestyle form of play will give the Cards a very good chance of reaching the last weekend again in 2014. It will be a long time before we ever see another personality this big in a Cardinal uniform so I’m going to enjoy every second of “Russdiculousness” next season.

What about next season?

I know it’s not easy for a college basketball team to win back-to-back championships but with the return of Smith it does make that task very attainable in my opinion. We are losing two really good players and two guys that were leaders in Peyton and Gorgui. But are gaining some very good replacements. Terry Rozier, Chris Jones and Anton Gill will share time in the back-court rotation and with the return of Russ it will give these guys time to develop into their roles on the team. And we already have an established back-up in place up front in Montrezl Harrell along with Stephan VanTreese and newcomers Akoy Agau will join them, as will big man Mangok Mathiang.

So with the pieces in place to make up for the production lost and key players returning in Kevin Ware, Luke Hancock, Chane Behanan, Wayne Blackshear and now Russ Smith this Louisville team will once again be loaded. There’s no reason to doubt that they couldn’t do what that Florida team did in 06/07 and repeat as National Champs.

FULL PRESS CONFERENCE: Russ Smith Stays At Louisville 4-24-2013:

Have the “CARDS” finally found a permanent home?

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App


I became an avid Louisville fan in 1980 when I was 9 yrs old. I remember as if it was yesterday watching that title game on my parent’s old console. Those were the good old days. I wasn’t concerned with conference alignment and it was something that never even crossed my mind. The only thing that mattered was if my Cards were going to win or lose. Since 1980, I have watched the Cards play in three conferences (Basketball). In total, they have played in six different leagues (Basketball). They have belonged to the Big East Conference since the 2005–06 seasons. Before that, they belonged to the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference from the 1925–26 to 1947–48 seasons, the Ohio Valley Conference for the 1948–49 season, the Missouri Valley Conference from 1964–65 to 1974–75, the Metro Conference from 1975–76 to 1994-95, and Conference USA from 1995-96 to 2004-05. They played as an independent school from 1911-12 to 1924-25 and from 1949-50 to 1963-64 (29 total seasons). Note: Football has belonged to three of these leagues. The Missouri Valley Conference, Conference USA, and Big East

I don’t know about the rest of you but I thought once we got into the Big East that it was going to be for the long haul. I remember how excited I was to hear we were joining the league. But things started to change and the Big East slowly started to fall apart. Now all that is left is a group of Catholic Basketball Schools. The Louisville program will now spend a year in the make shift American Athletic Conference before moving to the ACC in 2014. Thanks to our superior athletic programs and our great Athletic Director, we seem to have found a new home again. This time it looks like it may actually be for the long hall as news broke today that – the Atlantic Coast Conference presidents approved a grant of media rights for the league through 2026-27, effectively halting the exodus of any schools to other conferences. The move solidifies the future of the ACC, which had several teams that had been speculated as targets of the Big Ten and possibly the Big 12. The ACC’s grant of rights makes it untenable financially for a school to leave, guaranteeing in the 14 years of the deal that a school’s media rights, including revenue, for all home games would remain with the ACC regardless of the school’s affiliation. With this move the ACC becomes the fourth league with a grant of rights, along with the Big Ten, Pac-12 and Big 12. The SEC is the only conference among the “power five” leagues that does not have a grant of rights.(ESPN)

Like 8 years ago, when we got the news about our membership to the Big East I will be very happy to join the ACC. But that happiness will now come with much more optimism. The move taken by the ACC today will hopefully give us conference stability and that’s something I have never seen as a Cardinal fan. I had always hoped that one day we would find our place in the shuffle and I’m just glad that it finally appears that has happened. Now all any of us can do as fans is the same thing I have done since I was 9 years old. Look forward to that next Cardinal victory. Louisville first Cards Forever!


Four Future Cards in Derby Festival Basketball Classic

Uploaded from the Photobucket <br />
iPhone App

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Four Louisville signees Akoy Agau, Anton Gill, Dillon Avare and David Levitch will play in tonight’s Derby Festival Classic in Louisville’s Freedom Hall.
Three of the Four finalist for the 3-point contest will include 3 of the Louisville guys Akoy Agau, Dillon Avare and David Levitch. Anton Gill is also in the finals of the dunk contest.

The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. and tickets are available for $11 and $16 through and at the Freedom Hall Box Office.

Here are the rosters for each team. All of the Louisville guys will play on the white team.

White team: Akoy Agau (Louisville), Conner Frankamp (Kansas), Keith Frazier (SMU), Anton Gill (Louisville), Jarell Martin (LSU), Jordan Mickey (LSU), Robert Hubbs (Tennessee), Jajaun Johnson (Marquette), Rysheed Jordan (undecided), Austin Nichols (Memphis), Dillon Avare (Louisville), David Levitch (Louisville).

Black team: Stevie Clark (Oklahoma State), Devin Davis (Indiana), Tyler Ennis (Syracuse), Luke Fischer (Indiana), Collin Hartman (Indiana), Dominique Hawkins (Kentucky), Zak Irvin (Michigan), Sindarius Thornwell (South Carolina), Rusty Troutman (Bellarmine), Stanford Robinson (Indiana), Troy Williams (Indiana), Derek Willis (Kentucky).

First held in 1973, the Classic is the oldest high school all-star game in the nation and is known for showcasing players who’ve moved on to stardom at the collegiate and professional levels. Former players include Jamal Mashburn, Moses Malone, Rex Chapman, Pervis Ellison, Isiah Thomas, Dominique Wilkins, Darrell Griffith, Derek Anderson, Anfernee Hardaway and Michael Beasley.