Friday night at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium was everything you wanted to be as a fan. Gorgeous weather, free admission, free parking, activities for the kids, $2 beers, and Louisville football with Bobby Petrino back at the helm.
I am just going to give you some quick hitters with stats or things I noticed. You also have the option of reading the full recap on UofL’s site.
*I know it is just the spring game, and you are playing against your defense, so maybe this isn’t always good…but the yards, points, and fun that you remember are back. The red team had 21 points after the 1st quarter. I remember plenty of times last year when we were in the 4th quarter with about 21-24 points hanging on for the win against teams like Memphis or Houston. The offense is back folks.
*Will Gardner looked great. He completed 32-37 passes for 542 yards and 4 touchdowns. He did throw 1 interception that clearly was a bad decision and looked forced. But other than that 1 mistake, he looked good.
The details have been announced for this year’s Spring Football game. Check them out below…
*Friday April 11 at 7:30 p.m. ET
*Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium
*Stadium games open at 6:00 p.m.
*Activities outside the stadium start at 4:00 p.m.
*Live music in the Street Fest area with food, $2 beers, and carnival rides
*$2 beer during the game on the Norton Party Deck
*Concessions open on the concourse
*Cardinal Authentic Store open in Street Fest with sales up to 70% off
*After the game, players signing autographs for 45 minutes. Some players will be available for pictures.
There are many more than just five reasons to attend a Louisville spring football practice. But for the sake of your time and attention, I have narrowed it down for you. So far, there have been 8 practices for the fans to attend. There are 6 more before the Spring Game on Friday April 11 at 7:30. So in case you need any motivation, here are 5 reasons why you should attend a spring practice before it’s too late…
1) Because you finally can!
We all appreciate what Charlie Strong and his staff did here, that’s a given. But when it came to stuff like this, you would think that the Louisville football team was Fort Knox. There would usually be one or two open practices for the fans, and that was it. So if you couldn’t make one of those two, you were out of luck. This year has been completely different. All 14 spring practices are open to the public. That gives you so many chances to go see the team, so take advantage of this opportunity. We know what it’s like to feel shutout from seeing our own team out there on the practice fields. This is a real treat.
I attended the open football practice on Wednesday afternoon at the Trager Indoor Practice Facility. Like most spring practices without the full pads on, it is hard to tell too much from what you see. But since I did go and saw more than those who were not there, I can at least come up with some quick hitting notes, so this should be better than nothing for those who could not make it out there. If you want to see the full spring schedule, click here.
*Teddy Bridgewater is not walking through that door unfortunately.
*In all seriousness, I am fully confident that by the time practice starts in the fall, Bobby Petrino will have his quarterback groomed and ready to go. Things are just shaky right now. Will Gardner looks good at times, but then average at times. Kyle Bolin is usually Mr. Accuracy, but he wasn’t today. He also had a couple of fumbles. The overall quarterback play for me was average at best today.
Check out these videos from Tuesday’s practice taken by scout.com’s Michael McCammon.
ESPN’s Mark Schlabach released another way-too-early Top 25 for the 2014 college football season. In the last one, the Cards were included. But since the hiring of Bobby Petrino, Louisville has found a way back in at #25. Of course this does not mean much now. It is just something to talk about and give you an idea of where we may begin the season.
Say what you want about new Louisville coach Bobby Petrino, but the guy usually puts a winning team on the field. His first season back at Louisville shouldn’t be any different in the Cardinals’ first season in the ACC. The Cardinals have to find a replacement for departing junior Teddy Bridgewater, who might be the first quarterback taken in the NFL draft. Rising sophomores Will Gardner and Kyle Bolin will battle for the job, and they’ll be surrounded by a lot of proven playmakers. Tailback Dominique Brown is coming back after running for 825 yards this past season, and Auburn transfer Michael Dyer might get new life under Petrino. The Cardinals also bring back seven players who caught at least 15 passes in 2013. Defensively, the Cardinals might bring back only four starters, after losing junior safety Calvin Pryor to the NFL draft. The ACC schedule makers gave the Cardinals a break; they’ll play conference road games at Boston College, Clemson, Syracuse and Virginia.
In a day filled with not-so-exciting college football games, the Louisville Cardinals did not intend for this game to be close and filled with drama. After last week’s 14 point win at Kentucky, where a lot of people said our national title hopes and Teddy Bridgewater’s Heisman hopes took a hit, the Cards needed to come out and make a statement and be dominant. I would say they did just that, leaving no doubt in this game. If you are a top 10 team and you play a team that is this bad, you have to put on a performance like this and not struggle to have control of the game.
For the third year in a row, the Governor’s Cup will reside in Louisville. On Saturday afternoon, the Louisville Cardinals defeated the Kentucky Wildcats 27-13 at Commonwealth Stadium. The 7th ranked Cards moved to 3-0 on the season while Kentucky dropped to 1-2. It was a slow start offensively for both teams, and was much closer at half than most people expected. The offense for the Cards began to click in the 3rd quarter, and that was where the game was won.
That about sums up my prediction for how the kitty cats will feel on Saturday afternoon. So you can take that and move on, or read on if you care to. Sometimes with this blog, I just report the facts and keep everything professional. This time? Not so much. I am going into 100% fan-mode here, because that is what I am first and foremost.
Previous position breakdowns:
Today we continue our position breakdowns for the 2013 football season and focus on the Running Backs. Of course the big news recently was the addition of Michael Dyer to the team. Adding Dyer to an already solid group is big. Let’s take a look at who the Cards have at running back for this season.
6’2 216 lbs
If you remember, Dominique Brown actually came to UofL as a quarterback. As a freshman in 2010, he was mainly just used as our “Wildcard” quarterback. So basically he would get the snap and run. He did throw 1 pass, and that was an interception. He had 20 rushes for 59 yards that season.
As some of you may know, I lived in Auburn, Alabama from August 2008-April 2012. So I was down there for the 2010 National Championship and got to see Michael Dyer live and in person. So I have been very excited about the possibility of Dyer joining the Cards. Others may have just seen his numbers and knew he was a good player, but being somewhere where football talk happens 24/7, 365 days a year, you get to know a lot about the players.
ESPN own College Football Analyst had plenty to say about the addition of Michael Dyer to Louisville including quotes from Dyer himself:
By Daryl Foust:
I wouldn’t say it was a ‘dire situation’ (pun intended) to add Michael Dyer to the Louisville roster this upcoming season. Louisville has just been voted the conference favorite to win the AAC for what I like to call a buffer year until we pack our bags in 2014. Don’t get me wrong, like Teddy said on ESPN First Take with Stephen A Smith, teams aren’t going to lay down for the Cards. But I think it is unanimous that the Sugar Bowl champs have a very weak schedule ahead of them until they head to the ACC, where we will call home for what I hope is a good while.
There has been a lot of chatter recently, but now it is finally official: Michael Dyer has joined the Louisville Cardinals! Dyer was the MVP of the 2011 BCS National Championship game for the Auburn Tigers when they defeated the Oregon Ducks 22-19. He rushed for 143 yards on 22 carries and had the most memorable play of the game when this happened to set up the game winning field goal.