Syracuse head football coach Scott Shafer met with the media for his weekly press conference to preview the Louisville game on Friday night.
Bobby Petrino said on the ACC teleconference today that freshman quarterback Reggie Bonnafon will get the start again on Friday night against Syracuse. He also noted that Will Gardner will be available, which is good news of course. Petrino said that there is still a little swelling on the knee of Gardner, but that he will practice again today.
In his first start on Saturday against Wake Forest, Bonnafon was 16/32 for 206 yards. He did not have a touchdown or an interception. He rushed for 46 yards on 14 carries.
On Tuesday, some of the Syracuse Orange players and coaches met with the media to talk a little about their game with Notre Dame and then preview Louisville…sort of. There isn’t too much mention of the Cards, but you can still learn a little bit about Syracuse. Here are those videos.
Defensive Coordinator Chuck Bullough
After practice on Monday, Bobby Petrino and Eli Rogers met with the media to talk about the team and preview Syracuse. Petrino talks about why Dominique Brown was benched, the status of Will Gardner, and how he thought Reggie Bonnafon did. When asked if there is concern about his team looking ahead to the Clemson game, Petrino laughs it off and says that there are enough players on this team that lost to Syracuse two years ago (45-26) and they have a chip on their shoulder from that.
Syracuse football head coach Scott Shafer recaps the game against Notre Dame and briefly talks about the Louisville game on Friday. It isn’t a whole lot, but it’s something.
Anytime I go to a UofL football game, I like to watch it back on DVR before typing up too much about it. It is easy to have initial thoughts and reactions while at the game, but you do notice a lot more when you watch it again on TV. So since I finally was able to do that and I just finished with it, I will close the book on the Wake Forest game with these few thoughts, before moving on to Syracuse.
*I believe that Reggie Bonnafon had a very good game. In my 3 quick hitters after the game, I mentioned this, but I have to expand on that after seeing the game again. If you just look at the stats, you would think he was average at best. He threw for 206 yards on 16/32 passing and did not throw for a touchdown. He also did not have an interception. He rushed for 46 yards on 14 carries. Two of those carries were on 3rd and long and he picked up the 1st down with big runs. Huge plays!
Speaking of 3rd and long, the rest of the offense did not do him any favors when it came to down and distance. In the first quarter, actually on the same drive, the offense for the Cards had two different penalties on 3rd down that backed them up to 3rd and long. On 3rd and 9, there was an illegal substitution that backed it up to 3rd and 14. Bonnafon would actually convert that into a 1st down with a great throw to Eli Rogers, but that kind of penalty just can’t happen. Then on 3rd and 4, the Cards were called for a chop block, backing them up to 3rd and 18. On the next play, Bonnafon was sacked. Before the chop block was called, Louisville had picked up that 1st down on 3rd and 4.
Small hands, skinny knees, small body frame, a bad pro day. None of those things would stop Teddy Bridgewater from having a remarkable game on Sunday for the Minnesota Vikings in his first start against the Atlanta Falcons. After all of the criticism that Teddy took in the off-season about those goofy things that I mentioned, I think Louisville fans were waiting for him to get his chance and prove the doubters wrong. We knew how good he would be, and he was just that.
So with the high powered offense of the Falcons coming to town, and Teddy not having Adrian Peterson or tight end Kyle Rudolph as safety nets, how would Bridgewater keep up and give the Vikings a chance to win? Just by throwing for 317 yards on 19/30 passing and not turning the ball over. He also ran 5 times for 27 yards and had a rushing touchdown and led the Vikings to a 41-28 win.
The new polls came out on Sunday for the college football season. The Louisville Cardinals still are not ranked, but find themselves in a better spot than last week by moving up in the “others receiving votes” category. We knew a win at home over Wake Forest wouldn’t vault the Cards into the top 25, but they are still hanging around and can make some noise in the next couple weeks with games on the road.
In the AP Poll, Louisville is the 10th team outside of the rankings, so pretty much ranked 35th. In the USA Today Coaches Poll, they are essentially ranked 33rd.
Photos by Tim Haag (@UofLBirdsNest)
Here are a couple videos from the ACC Digital Network. The first is highlights from the game, and the second is the awesome run by Brandon Radcliff, which was actually the offensive line just moving him forward and forward! I have never seen a pile move like that. You usually see the whistle blow before that ever happens!
It wasn’t the prettiest of games, but it was a win. Here are three quick observations from the game yesterday.
The defense had another great game
Some things are obvious, but it has to be said. This defense picked up the slack for the offense once again this game. Gerod Holliman continues to impress as he got his 6th interception of the season and had a great return that almost went for a touchdown. He also had a huge hit on a Wake Forest player that sent him out of the game and got the crowd very energized. He is clearly one of the fan favorites on this team.
For the game, the defense only gave up 3 points, and that was after a fumble by Reggie Bonnafon around midfield. They also only gave up 100 yards of offense from Wake Forest. Lorenzo Mauldin was in the backfield all game and came away with 3 sacks. Sheldon Rankins actually had an interception on what seemed like the 30th time that the Demon Deacons tried to run that shovel pass play up the middle.
Facing a freshman QB for the 3rd time in 5 games, the defense did exactly what they should have done, shut him down.
Recruiting is a crazy thing. Just a couple of weeks ago, the Cards had a commitment from 5-star Antonio Blakeney and had backed off of 6’6 combo guard Perry Dozier. You know the story: Blakeney decommits, and the Cards try to get back in the mix for Dozier. Rick Pitino and Kenny Johnson spent Wednesday evening giving Dozier an in home visit, and it certainly paid off. Dozier had 4 official visits lined up and had 1 more opening, and he will use that for a trip to UofL’s campus.
When the Cards take the field on Saturday against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, they will be facing a freshman quarterback. In fact, it will be the third time this season that the quarterback facing the defense for the Cards will be a freshman. The other two games were Miami and Florida International.
The starter for the Demon Deacons, John Wolford, is a 6’1 freshman from Jacksonville, Florida. This season he is 87/145 (60%) for 883 yards. He has thrown 6 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. His best game this season could also be called his worst game. In a 23-7 win against Gardner Webb, Wolford was 30/38 for 291 yards. He threw for 2 touchdowns but also had 3 interceptions. But you could also look at the season opener and call that his worst. In a 17-10 loss to Louisiana-Monroe, he was 12/22 for 97 yards with 0 touchdowns and 1 interception.
He was a 3-star quarterback coming out of high school. He also held offers from Mississippi State, Penn State, East Carolina, and more.
Wake Forest (2-2) had their weekly press conference on Tuesday to preview the Cards. Head coach Dave Clawson, wide receiver Matt James, and cornerback Kevin Johnson spoke. Below are the transcripts of what each of them said as well as links to the video on the Wake Forest site.
Head Coach Dave Clawson
“Wrapping up Army, I’m proud of the win, and not just because of the win, but how we won. To come back and win the fourth quarter the way we did, the way our defense played in the second half, there were certainly opportunities to not come back, and certainly things didn’t look good for 20 minutes of that game – late in the first half and the whole third quarter. I think our guys showed a lot of resiliency. Watching the tape, the physical effort that our guys are giving us – I’m really proud of it. We are not playing as many players as we would like. Sometimes when guys play more snaps than you’d like to, you may see lack of effort or guys taking plays off, and our guys are giving us such great physical effort. We’ve got to continue to develop and try to play more players. Heading into an eight-game ACC season, that’s going to have to happen. There were a lot of things (from Army): we took care of the football, their two turnovers really hurt them. We had a turnover late in the first half and our defense allowed us to survive that. After giving up three consecutive drives, to get a three-and-out before the half turned out to be a critical play. Offensively we did a nice job in the red zone. So a lot of positives to build on and obviously we have to build with who the opponent is this week.
In the Cardinal Catch Up, I bring you up to date on how the “other” sports at UofL are doing. You know, the ones not named football or men’s basketball. There are plenty of other teams having success, so it is nice to keep up with them. You don’t have to be die hard and follow them as closely if you don’t choose to, but this gives you options. You can just check out scores and records, or click on press releases to read more details. Check out how your teams at the University of Louisville are doing so far this fall.
In this Cardinal Catch Up, the Cards pick up wins over Kentucky and a #1 team in the country. Not too bad!
*The 11th ranked field hockey team (7-1) is off to a great start this season. On Saturday, they took down the #1 team in the nation, North Carolina, 3-2 at Trager Stadium. Senior Mallory Mason was named ACC Co-Player of the Week. On Tuesday they defeated Ohio State 6-3 to extend their home winning streak to 14 games. They will be back in action this Friday as they take on #16 Wake Forest on the road in a big ACC matchup.
Bobby Petrino met with the media on Monday to talk about the upcoming game against Wake Forest. He also recapped the FIU game and gave updates on Will Gardner and L.J. Scott. James Quick and Pio Vatuvei also spoke for a few minutes. These videos are from thecrunchzone.com.
At his weekly press conference, head coach Bobby Petrino updated the status of quarterback Will Gardner. Petrino says that Gardner is very sore and there is swelling. He is meeting with the doctors today. Right now he says he is day to day and they should have more answers possibly tomorrow. But other than that, he doesn’t know too much more than they knew on Saturday.
Teddy Bridgewater didn’t have to wait long to become the starter for the Minnesota Vikings. Unfortunately, it comes at the expense of Matt Cassel breaking bones in his foot. You wish it wouldn’t happen like that, but injuries happen in the NFL, and now it is Teddy’s time. Filling in for Cassel on Sunday against the Saints, Bridgewater went 12-20 for 150 yards and rushed for 27 yards.
Today Adidas unveiled the new Louisville Football uniform combination. The Cards will wear this new combo on Oct. 30th when they face FSU. I’m not saying this is the best uniform combo I have ever seen but I’m sure not saying it isn’t! #L1C4