Will the legend of the Puma come to Pass…


Things can change quickly in Fall camp but according to the current depth chart, it looks like Jawon Pass will get the first snap when the Cardinals take the field against the Irish on September 2nd. It won’t be the first time Pass has took the first snap of the season in a big game for the Cardinals. After waiting out a red-shirt year in 2016 and only playing sparingly in 2017 Pass got his first chance to shine during the 2018 season taking the first snap against Alabama.

Pass completed 20-of-39 passes for 252 yards and two touchdowns against the Crimson Tide and while that night wasn’t one to remember it looked like the Cardinals passing game was going to be on track as in previous seasons and folks still seemed optimistic about Pass. We all know now how that turned out. The season was abysmal and Pass who took the first snap wouldn’t even see the field against Kentucky in the final game of 2018.

This isn’t the way the legend of the Puma was supposed to end. And yes Jawon Pass had created quite a legend for himself as a High School athlete. With an impressive mix of height (6-4), size (209 pounds) and speed (4.50 40-yard dash time), Pass was rated the No. 5 dual-threat quarterback, No. 19 Georgia product and the 228th recruit overall in the 2016 ESPN 300. As a 4-star dual-threat quarterback, Pass had a number of potential suitors. That included all of the Big Boys. Alabama, Clemson, Auburn, Florida, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, Ole Miss and Texas A&M all recruited him along with others.

Pass committed to Louisville on July 16, 2015, but he kept his options open right until National Signing Day and entertained flipping to Alabama or Auburn as the the cycle came to an end. It was said that Nick Saban wanted Pass badly at Alabama and he even took a last minute trip to Bama before making a decision. By this time Louisville fans were in a frenzy about what could be. So much so that hundreds of the Cardinals faithful made their way over to Creekside High School in Atlanta the night before the Auburn game in 2015 to watch Pass’s Carver High School team play. I made that trip with my family to show our love for the young Puma.

Highly regarded and one of the most anticipated recruits to make their way to Louisville the legend of Puma has to have a better ending than that debacle last year. I seen a scouting report on Pass that read like this:

“Pass is like a ball of clay that needs to be molded. There is a lot to work with here talent-wise, but also a lot of technical work to be done. Must continue to develop knowledge of the game so that he can become a passer who is also an athlete as opposed to an athlete playing quarterback. Coaches will like his upside and rightly so. Is a good player that has a very high ceiling for development.”

Bobby Petrino took that ball of clay and instead of turning it into a work of art left it looking like the ash trey I made in my home economics class my senior year in high school. As a Fourth-year performer Jawon has passed for 2,198 yards and 10 touchdowns in 16 career games completing only 55.5 percent of his throws with 12 interceptions.

I don’t know about molding clay but the skinny on Coach Satterfield is that he knows how to mold a college QB and he knows how to develop a football players talents. There’s been and will continue to be plenty of chatter about a potential turnaround for Pass, but ultimately I think it will be up to Pass to realize his potential and make himself relevant again.

There couldn’t be a bigger support system for Jawon Pass and the legend of the Puma than the Cardinal Nation. A lot of us were on board from the beginning and want to see this thing have a happy ending. I will continue to be a strong supporter in Pass and still believe he can be what everyone thought he could be back in 2016. Now he just has to believe in himself again. I sure hope the legend of the Puma will come to Pass.

L’s Up!

College Football back this week… Kinda.



This week marks the unofficial start of the college football season for us here in the ACC and others across the country. It’s a lean time of the year for college sports but conference media days is a thirst-quenching event for all avid fans. Coach Satterfield will have WR Seth Dawkins and LB Dorian Etheridge with him at the 2019 ACC Football Kickoff, July 17-18, at The Westin Charlotte in Charlotte, North Carolina. Two players that will have to play a major role in the Cardinals 6th season in the ACC.

Louisville enters year six in the ACC with a winning record. At 21-19 the Cardinals have established some ground in the conference. We took our licks last year for sure (0-8) but have been competitive overall. The Cardinals have added a few new trophies to the case since being ACC members and have taken it right to the blue blood of the conference.

This year a new challenge. Louisville has never headed into a season in a Power 5 conference with a losing record from the previous season. To add to this challenge a complete overhaul of the coaching staff. The last time things were this bad in Louisville the Cardinals were coming off a 15-21 record in three years under Kragthorpe and the schedule was a little more forgiving for the first-year head coach Strong.

Coach Satterfield was named the 23rd head coach to lead the Cardinals back in December. He had a remarkable 51-24 record at App State including a 38-10 conference mark in six seasons with the Mountaineers. His conference record of 34-6 in five Sun Belt seasons is the best in the league over that span. The winning recipe has arrived in Louisville but will there be enough ingredients in the mix for a successful year in the ACC.

With 19 returning starters the cupboard is far from bare for Satterfield and his staff heading into the 2019 campaign. With 7 starters on offense and 10 on defense returning to the line-up, I’d like to believe that the program can be competitive in conference play and string together enough wins to make it into a postseason Bowl game.

We got rid of what was supposed to be the problem. The only thing left from that 0-8 ACC debacle last season is these players. How will they respond? Could it be that some of them were the problem last year? There are a lot of questions for this team heading into another ACC Football season. We’ll get answers to some of the trivial stuff this week as Coach Satterfield and players make the rounds at media days but the real answers will come between those lines this fall.

Coach Satterfield and the players with him at ACC Media Day will be at the podium on Wednesday from 3:30pm to 4:00pm. You can catch all of the live video and coverage at ACC KICKOFF CENTRAL.

Coach Satterfield has faced Clemson, Miami and Wake Forest from the ACC going 0-3 in those games.

Rooftops, an RV & The Berm It’s June in Louisville



Dan McDonnell took over as head coach of the Louisville Baseball program in 2007 and has turned it into a perennial powerhouse. In fact, Louisville entered 2019 with the most wins of any Division I program from 2007-18 with 554.

The Cardinal 9 (as we call them affectionately) has become a household name nationally enjoying a historic run by remaining ranked in at least one major national poll every week since the release of the 2012 preseason rankings. It is longest such span in school history.

All of that success has equaled to a lot of fun for Cardinal fans and my family looks forward to our trips to Jim Patterson Stadium in June for postseason baseball. Louisville has hosted the NCAA regional round eight of the last 11 seasons. My son is 7 years old and that playground on the Berm has become a staple of his young summer life. I think he has a little click of dudes he sees every summer. It’s awesome.

My wife is not even a sports person and she enjoys our summer trips to Jim Patterson Stadium. I remember the first time she saw the rooftop renegades. She thought it was awesome that folks could sit on top of their house and cheer for their favorite team. Oh, yea we get on the rooftops for our Cardinals. Just one of the many unique and glorious things you’ll see at the University of Louisville’s baseball stadium in June.

I also love seeing fans sitting on the rooftops and that one group of Louisville fans that park their RV down the third base line. They tailgating like it’s September down there. What other ballparks in the NCAA will you see these things?

I’m no college Baseball aficionado. I follow the team loosely through the season getting most of my updates and Louisville Baseball news from @GeneralWasp on Twitter. I am a sucker for nostalgia. And I really look forward to going to Louisville Baseball games with my family in June.

It was awful missing out on our summer tradition in 2018, but the Cardinals are back in the friendly confines of Jim Patterson Stadium, where they have won 15 consecutive regional games. Win, lose or draw, ”Fullerton’s 11th inning always-bending line drive over the left-field wall in 2015”, ”the UC Santa Barbara walk-off home run off Zack Burdi in 2016”, ”that awesome dog pile after beating the Cayuts 6-2 in 2017” the good and the bad all part of the experiences. I have been there for them all.

With guys like Alex Binelas, Tyler Fitzgerald, Justin Lavey and Logan Wyatt leading the Louisville offense and guys like Reid Detmers and Michael McAvene controlling the mound our Cardinals are going to be a tough out at home where the Cardinals are 20-3 in regional games.

Its baseball and there are no guarantees on the outcome. We can only hope we have some guys this season who want to seize their moment. I can guarantee that it will be a great time being around all of the great pageantries that Louisville postseason baseball provides. Enjoy it Cardinal fans. I’ll see you at the Berm!

All Info on NCAA Regional from GoCards.com
Parking, Single Game Tickets, Will Call Info – 2019 NCAA Regional

Louisville Basketball gets a Fresh new commit


Spring has sprung and we have reached a point in the sports season where players are coming and going. A lot of guys have entered what the NCAA calls the transfer portal, some will test their luck in the NBA waters, and some will decide where they want to play their final season of College Basketball. Today graduate transfer Lamarr “Fresh” Kimble decided that he will use his final season of eligibility to play for the Cardinals.

Kimble says that the “Fresh” nickname has followed him around since he was younger. Lamarr says that the Fresh nickname was originally given to his father and he just adopted it over the years. He says that it has meant different things during his life and has been used to describe his skills with a basketball. I don’t know about fresh, but he has proven to be a winner throughout his basketball career and seems to have the character and leadership qualities we have grown accustomed to here at Louisville in regard to graduate transfers.

An all-state performer throughout high school he helped his teams win multiple state titles. He carried that ability with him to St. Joseph’s where he earned Atlantic 10 All-Rookie honors helping the Hawks win a conference Title coming off the bench his freshman season. He started to really find his groove averaging 15.5 points and 4.5 assist a game before injuring his foot. This injury would cause him to miss the final 7 games of his sophomore season and all but one game during his junior season.

Despite having to overcome yet another injury to his hand missing another 10 games Kimble had a great final season with the Hawks where he was the second leading scorer with 15.6 points per game…, and ranked second on the team in assists with 2.8 per game… A couple of times last season he had back to back 22-point games and even hung a career-high 31 points on #13 West Virginia.

In doing my research on Kimble two things stood out to me. 1. Is that this dude had 3 game winning shots during his time at St Joseph’s. That tells me that he is a game winner and wants the ball in his hands when it’s all on the line. You can’t have enough guys like this on a team. And 2. Kimble is the only player in St. Joseph’s school history to serve as a team captain for three years. Now that’s Fresh.

We have been very lucky to have some quality young men come into the Louisville program as graduate transfers. Guys with exceptional ability on the court and exceptional character off the court. By all accounts Kimble follows that mold. We have a great group of freshmen coming to campus next season. That group is going to need the kind of leadership and example that Lamarr can provide. Former St Joseph’s Coach Phil Martelli said: “[Kimble] is not a scoring machine but he is a leader.”

I couldn’t be more excited about the direction of the Louisville Basketball program. Most early prognosticators have them ranked in their Top 10’s to start the 2019-20 season. We needed to add a few more pieces for it to be a special one and Coach Mack is off to a good start here. Welcome “Fresh” Kimble.

Signing Day more than just numbers for Louisville Football


This is my first football post on the website since around October. Like most of you, I want to get excited about Louisville Football again. I attended my 7th straight Louisville Signing Day party on Wednesday night. I’ve sat thru a lot of great player footage at these events over the years and listened to some great Coaches describing their new players.

I still remember the Signing Day Party in 2015 and Coach McGee closing out that night talking about Lamar Jackson.


I think we all knew that he was going to be special. There was a buzz in the air and we all felt great about Louisville Football that night.

I felt a similar buzz in the Brown Williamson Club on Wednesday night. It wasn’t because we signed a future Heisman winner, and it wasn’t because we signed a highly ranked class. There was a buzz in the air because we signed guys who will be the foundation of a new Era of Louisville Football.

Coach Satterfield and his staff had 58 Days to shore up the 2019 Recruiting Class. They ended up inking 16 players in this Class. Four guys signed early and 12 guys signed on Wednesday afternoon.

The class includes five offensive linemen (most desperate position), four linebackers, two running backs, two tight ends, a cornerback, defensive end and quarterback. They were able to get some great guys in such a short amount of time including 4-star LB/DE Ja’Darien Boykin and 4-star LB/DE Zach Edwards.

This class was about much more than the number. The new Cardinals will play a big role in the culture change that the new staff is trying to instill in the Locker Room. Sure it was about trying to find guys that were good but this time it was just as important to find Good guys…

I think the new Louisville Football staff hit their mark. And you could see the roots of that culture change on Wednesday night listening to them describe their new players. It was also apparent in how the Coaching staff was interacting with each other. This is already a very tight-knit group. The excitement is real for them and you could see that.

Excitement is contagious and it made its way around the room on Wednesday night. Things are headed in the right direction and its the guys who signed in this class that will be the foundation going forward. I’m looking forward to Spring Practice and looking forward to getting the bad taste out of my mouth from last seasons debacle. I want to be excited about Louisville Football again.


Welcome to our new Cardinals:

OL Zach Williamson

CB Jamel Starks

LB Allen Smith

RB Aidan Robbins

TE Ean Pfeifer

LB Monty Montgomery

RB Jalen Mitchell

TE Dez Melton

OL TJ McCoy

LB Dorian Jones

OL Jackson Gregory

LB Zach Edwards

QB Evan Conley

OL Renato Brown

OL Joshua Black

DE Ja’Darien Boykin

(Graphics courtesy GoCards.com)

Fun Night at the Yum Center


It was all smiles on Wednesday night at the Yum Center. Coach Mack has his new team in midseason form. They have bought into his brand of tough basketball and seem to be enjoying playing it. The Cardinals didn’t miss a beat coming off two big wins in a row over Michigan State and Seton Hall. They showed that even in a 45 point rout that they are gonna give their new coach their best effort.

Jordan Nwora continues to lead this group on the offensive end of the floor. He had 21 points and what I really liked about his stat line is that he only had one turnover. When he takes care of the basketball he is one of the best players in the country…

Steven Enoch’s offensive prowess is starting to come around. He had a couple of nice little jumpers. You can see that confidence building in him. Once he realizes his potential he will be a stat sheet stuffer. Not only scoring points but rebounding, blocking shots and getting steals. He led the team with 9 boards on Wednesday night. Steven is a player trending upward.

He might not be the player you want him to be every time out but he is a player that wanted to be here and stayed committed thru the muck. That’s why I love when VJ King has a good game. He had 17 points, 6 boards, 4 assists, and 1 steal. And he had one of the most athletic moves I’ve seen all season with that putback dunk. VJ isn’t going to play the way you want him to every night. But he’s here playing. Be happy when he has a big night and respect him for that. He’s gonna have a lot of big nights.

We watched the physical transformation of this group back in the summer and are now seeing the transformation of this team on the court. When Coach Mack got here he knew what needed to be done and he has already turned the culture of the program around. What some said would take years has only taken a few months.

You take a young hungry motivated coach and give him the resources of a University of Louisville and that’s gonna be a winning recipe 9 times out of ten. Speaking of young hungry and motivated coaches New Football Coach Scott Satterfield was introduced to the Yum Center crowd on Wednesday night.

There is no doubt that our new football Coach has a big challenge ahead of him but I can see him having similar success with his group that Mack has had with the basketball program. Once he gets the culture back to where it needs to be I think you’ll see things start to really fall into place. Will it take years? I don’t think it will. I do think we will have a team that is playing hard and playing for each other again.

There is a ton of coverage and material out there on Scott Satterfield. This guy has been a part of building two programs from the ground up. He assisted with the task at FIU as the offensive coordinator for two seasons. All those teams did was win. Then he built his own program at App State. Winning seems to follow some coaches around. Winning follows Scott Satterfield around. Winning follows Coach Mack around.

Both of these guys know the X’s and O’s of their respective sports but the key to their success has just as much to do with knowing the Jimmys and Joes of their sport. Both guys understand winning has just as much to do with the culture of a program as it does the other stuff. It’s why Coach Mack was able to turn things around so quickly and I think it will be why Coach Satterfield turns the football program around.

We were all having fun in the Yum Center on Wednesday night. Everywhere you looked people were smiling, hugging and high fiving each other. I think we have an AD that knows his Jimmy’s and Joes pretty good too. A lot of good things ahead for the Cardinal Nation and gonna be a lot more nights like this. Enjoy the ride folks!

L’s Up!

Coach Satterfield introduced to Yum Center Crowd

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Coach Mack, VJ King & Christen Cunningham ACC Media Day


Coach Mack took the podium at his first ACC Media Days on Wednesday afternoon. He had team captain’s VJ King and Christen Cunningham with him in Charlotte. The guys sounded very positive and motivated about the season ahead. It really was a special day for Coach Mack who got to share it with his oldest daughter. He turned over his social media account to her and she documented the behind the scenes of the events.

V.J. King, Jr., Louisville
Started all 36 games for the Cardinals last season … ranked fourth on the team in scoring with 8.6 ppg and fifth in rebounding at 3.3 rpg … played 25.4 minutes per game.

Christen Cunningham, Gr., Louisville
Transfer from Samford … elected as a team captain for this season with V.J. King … ranks 13th on Samford’s all-time scoring list with 1,283 career points.

Here are the guys as they took center stage on Wednesday. I’m looking forward to another exciting ACC season.

Press Conference starts at the 4:00 mark.

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

It’s Howling Time… Kentucky Derby 144


Derby Week is the one time during the sports cycle that I feel completely out of place. This is the week that the Universty of Louisville and those who cover it go to the horses. The UofL band will play my Old Kentucky Home at the Derby for the 82nd time today, New Mens Basketball Coach Chris Mack called ”Riders Up” at Oaks and you’ll catch a glance at Cardinal Stadium as the horses come down the stretch.

The who’s who of Louisville Sports folks have spent all week on the backside at Churchill Downs covering the 4 legged athletes. Usually, I’d have an urge to be right in the mix but not this week. I don’t know anything about horse racing. Nothing! But I do enjoy watching and betting on the yearly event. And every year that leads me on a hunt for any advice I can get before my wager.

About 7 or 8 years ago that hunt landed me on Justin TV. Anyone remember that streaming site? I stumbled upon a guy who calls himself the Howling Wolf. He had an interactive horse racing show on Justin TV. There was always a room full of folks watching him pick winners and letting out a big Howl after doing so. Trust me folks this guy picks winners.

I have hit several pick 4’s over the years and cashed more than a few tickets with the Howling Wolf. I recently found my old friend again on Facebook. Feeling like the only Louisville Blogger that isn’t somehow connected to this week I asked the Howling Wolf if he’d write something for the Big Race. He was nice enough to share his Derby Picks with us.

KENTUCKY DERBY SELECTIONS:

TOP SELECTION :
#12 ENTICED 30/1- GOT BUMPED TWICE IN THE WOOD MEMORIAL BY VINO ROSSO. WILL BE STALKING THE PACE EARLY AND SHOULD START MOVING UP CLOSER TO THE PACE IN HALF WAY INTO THE RACE AND GIVE HIS BEST KICK DOWN THE STRETCH.
THE JOCKEY ALAVARADO STAYS ABOARD

2ND CHOICE :
#5 AUDIBLE- HAS FACE AND BEATEN SOME OF THE HORSES IN THE FIELD. GETTING CASTELLANO BACK ABOARD AND WITH HIM ABOARD HAS WON BY ALMOSE 16 LENGHTS ABOARD. LIKES TO STALK CLOSE TO PACE AND GETS TIRED LATE FROM THAT. ILL LIKE TO SEE HIM STALKING BUT NOT TOO CLOSE TO SEE HIM GIVE A BETTER LATE MOVE.

3RD CHOICE:

#16 MAGNUM MOON 6/1- IS 4 FOR 4 TRYING FOR THE 5 STRAIGHT TO STAY UNDEFEATED. WILL LIKE THE STRETCH OUT IN DISTANCE. SO GREAT WORKOUTS THE LAST ONE WAS 47.70 BREZING AT THE CHURCHILL DOWNS TRACK ON APRIL 29TH.

GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE!

There you go, folks! The Cardinals Beak finally gave you some Derby love. I really appreciate the Howling Wolf for his Derby Picks. If you are looking for a cheat sheet for the rest of the Derby Day slate please consider giving my friend a look. I hope you are Howling when the winners cross the finish line today. Good Luck!

Here’s the link to Howling Wolfs site:

HOWLING WOLF’S HORSE RACING PICKS

HAPPY DERBY DAY!

Photos & Post Game Thoughts Spring Game 2018



Pass’ Pass

Pass played well overall. I feel currently he is our guy. He had some turnovers that bother me but are fixable. He struck me as his nerves had a little bit of him. Hopefully this will get worked out. With him being a non-contact target, we didn’t get to see much oh him running minus a few scrambles to the Line of scrimmage. He is physically larger which makes me much more comfortable at the quarterback position, especially for a mobile QB. And I won’t get tired of hearing Pass’ pass no matter how annoying it is over and over ha-ha

Malik…. Malik Cunningham was the biggest surprise for me of the spring game. Malik played excellent. He ran the ball great and was almost dead on his passes. My eyes will be on him 10x more!

Dez Fitzpatrick – What else can you say but SPECTACULAR. He had some great catches, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him become a #1 target for Pass.

Kemari Averett…. HUGE. He stood out to me. It may have been his 6’6″ 265lbs stature… or the 5 catches for 37 yards… that doesn’t sound like much but after a season where a 6-yard pass seemed difficult at times this is huge for me.

I’m happy with defense. White team had a pick and a fumble recovery. Hopefully it carries over into takeaways into the season.

Was great to see so many former Cards players at the half time awards ceremony. Between Deion Branch signing his name and taking pictures along the sideline (took him 30 minutes to get 50 yards to leave) to Jaire Alexander coming into the stands forever to sign autographs and take pictures. A line formed in the stands on the home side and he happily seen all that he could…They showed the truth in #L1C4

And the new catch phrase….

PASS’ PASS…

Maxwell Bird
#L1C4

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