Now that a few hours have passed since the game ended, I feel like sitting down to write about it. I have gotten much better over the years as to how I take losses. I do realize that I have no impact on the game whatsoever, and it is just that, a game. It is entertainment and a distraction from everyday life and real problems. So realizing that helps move on from losses. However, getting back to being the huge fan that I am, this one hurt!
In every game, there are good things and bad things that happen. This game seemed to be full of both. I would normally get on here and write about how things are just fine and this team will be ok, and no worries. That is just how I am now, Mr. Optimistic. The proof of that is that a few minutes after the game ended, a text came in that started with “I know you are the positive fan but…”
But I won’t be 100% positive talk here. I will address the problems that stuck out to me, no need to hide from them. So I will look at things from both sides. And since I am the positive one, I would prefer to end my post on the good things, so let’s go ahead and get the bad stuff out of the way. Before my negativity starts, just know that I still 100% support this team, including coaches and players. I love my Cards and one halfway critical post does not change that.
If you were able to catch the podcast that I was on the other night, you also got to hear a lot of ACC knowledge from Mr. Jeff Fann. Jeff runs the site AllSportsDiscussion.com, which focuses on the ACC but just as the name says, will also talk about anything in sports.
Besides knowing about all of the teams in the ACC, there was another reason I wanted to do a quick Q&A with Jeff about the game on Saturday. That reason? He is a Clemson graduate. So if there is any team he can talk about more and have a real passion for them, it has to be the Tigers. So here we go!
1) What is the biggest advantage that each team has over the other in this game?
Louisville’s offensive and defensive coordinators, Garrick McGee an Todd Grantham (respectively), met with the media over the last couple of days to discuss the upcoming game against Clemson. They also talked about their own team a little bit. The links to the videos are provided, as well as summaries of key notes they talked about.
-Practice was good. The kids were spirited. Not everything was perfect but it’s like that on Tuesdays because you are installing a new game plan, playing against a new defensive structure, but the spirit was there.
-Clemson has a really good defensive scheme. They have powerful guys in the middle. They have one of the top pash rushers in the country (Vic Beasley). They have three really good linebackers. They have length at safety. “I think #20 is 6’4.” So they present plenty of challenges for us.
On Monday afternoon, Bobby Petrino met with the media for his weekly press conference. He talked about Syracuse, previewed Clemson, and said that “there’s a good chance” that DeVante Parker will play on Saturday. Check out the video from thecrunchzone.com or just read the transcript below. Or do both, that is also an option.
Looking back on the Syracuse game, it was a big win for us. It was a good win for us. Again our defense played extremely well. They not only stopped the run and hit the quarterback, but they scored four points. We watched the video. We saw improvement. We hurt ourselves in the first half with penalties and we turned the ball over. There definitely was improvement in the second half.
The other thing I’m excited about is that you can see the competitive spirit and the players competing extremely hard to compete and win the games.
Unless you are subscribed to our e-mail list, which sends you an e-mail every time a new post is made on CardinalSportsZone.com, there may be some things you miss during the week. By the way, getting on that e-mail list is a GREAT idea, not to mention easy. On that column there on the right (on the full site), there is a section called “Follow CSZ via email.” Just click “follow” and get signed up. It is a great way to keep up if you can’t always check out the site to see if there are new articles.
Now back to this. If you missed things during the week, or even if you didn’t but want a page with all of the links about Louisville-Syracuse from the week that we posted, here it is for you. This way you don’t have to go search if you want to see things like the depth chart or the video of Bobby Petrino talking about Syracuse. It is all listed below. If anything else gets posted today about the game, I will add it on here too. Hope this makes things easier for you. Go Cards!
Here are the depth charts listed on each team’s website for Friday night’s game between Louisville and Syracuse. For Louisville, although it does say “Will Gardner or Reggie Bonnafon,” we know that Coach Petrino has announced that Reggie Bonnafon will start the game. It does list Matt Milton as a starter at wide receiver. Personally, I am STILL waiting for him to break onto the scene. I feel like I have been hyping him up for 3 years now.
The offensive line still has the “or” word used at center and right guard. Another interesting note is that James Quick is not listed as the first or second punt returner. Sticking with special teams, Brandon Radcliff is not listed as a starting kick returner, possibly indicating that he will continue to get more carries from the running back position.
11 Will Gardner 6-5 226 So.
or 7 Reggie Bonnafon 6-3 206 Fr.
12 Brett Nelson 6-4 220 Sr.
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.
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.
This week on 55……….
We talk Cardinal Camo…….YES…..Cardinal Camo. We go over huge upsets and letdown. We go over the wet, wet, win in South Florida and a slew of other great but random things that have happened this week. Glad to have 55 back for you guys after the hiatus last week. Without further adieu, here are the 55 greatest, most ridiculous or random things I have heard, had to debate, or just thought about this past week. This …..is……55.
1) First off I want to wish my mom a speedy recovery. She means the world to me and normally I don’t talk about personal issues on 55 but if you get a moment, say a prayer. I put her for #1 because she is my number 1….mushy I know (Don’t care)
2) Speaking of #1’s
4) On that shot by Becca Maddock, the #14 University of Louisville Field Hockey team defeated #1 UNC 3-2 Saturday. Congratulations for defending Trager!
5) Will be interesting to see where the Cards will be ranked when the new polls come out tomorrow…..
6) I got a tip a few weeks ago that we would be unveiling a new uni combo vs FSU in football. Me and Steve went through all the possible combos and ideas we could think of but nothing…..and the 55 means NOTHING could prepare us for this…………………….
8) First off, I’m sorry for referring to myself as the 55. Secondly may I say……….WOW! Here are a few more pics Adidas released this morning
10) Thank you Adidas for everything you do for us……
11) On Saturday the Football Cards defeated FIU 34-3 despite QB Will Gardner leaving the game with injury. The Cards O-Line looked very sloppy but this game was played on a sloppy field. The Cards line will have to improve if we want to have any shot at the big boys on our schedule.
12) A few highlights of the FIU game were Gerod Holliman taking the lead in INT’s in the country with 2 including this:
14) Once only thought of as a heavy hitter, Holliman has shown an evolution into a complete corner this year. It’s been a long time coming!
15) Also James Quick had this amazing catch:
17) Quick finished the day with 174 yards and 2 TD’s. Quick scored those 2 TD’s within :45 seconds. Amazing!
18) Also Keith Kelsey continued to impress after a 4 tackle day that included a sack for a 24 yard loss
19) I still think this should have counted
21) Oh well….I am sure we will plenty of Keith Kelsey highlights this season
22) It still should have counted!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
23) Moving on….
24) Speaking of our beloved Football Cardinals, UL is a 21 point favorite this week vs Wake Forest
25) I didn’t notice it during the Virginia game but did anyone else see Burgess hit their RB so hard his sweat exploded?
26) I wish I could’ve found that video….I tried but it kept taking me to clips that made me sad
27) I want to send out my condolences to the Bonnafon family since I was unable to last week…
28) When Reggie comes back there is no doubt in my mind that he will be starting for the time being. He is a tremendous talent and will thrive in Coach Petrino’s system. If that O line doesn’t improve we could put Jameis back there and it wouldn’t matter
29) Jameis get off that table! never mind….you know what I’m saying though
31) Ahhhhhh……….he stiff-armed him right in the….helmet
32) Glad we don’t have any more distractions like that at UL anymore (Insert Chane Smiley face)
33) On a different note, This weekend CSZ surpassed the 1 Million view mark lifetime. We want to thank each and every one of you for supporting this little thing we do. On my part I would like to say we were blessed to have such an amazing team. I want to thank Justin and Steve for everything they do let them know I appreciate them and we are lucky to have such a great team. We have some great Part timers too…Shout out to the princess of CSZ and her hat, Daryl Foust
34) Yesterday Matt Cassel broke some bones in his foot or something which prompted the Minnesota Vikings head coach to name him the starter going forward! Congrats to Teddy time and here’s hoping you show them what you showed us at the Ville!
36) Great, great moment….Class Act right there
37) Lets go to the week in review for Cardinal Athletics!
38) Women’s Golf won the Cardinal Cup on Tuesday! great start to the season by the ladies. Emily Haas finished the day at -1 for a 4th place finish overall. The Women travel to Colorado for the GolfWeek Challenge which starts today
39) The Men’s golf team helped take the victory for the ACC in the ACC/SEC challenge. The Cards did fall to Georgia in match play but J.D. Lehman and Robin Sciot-Siegrist picked up singles victories. The team is off until next Monday
40) Louisville Volleyball traveled to Texas for the Rice Invitational this past weekend. The Cards did not drop one set the entire weekend (3-0) and improved to 8-4 overall. Janelle Jenkins, Maya McClendon and Tess Clark were named to the All Tourney team with Jenkins landing MVP honors.
42) The Cards kick off their ACC Conference slate at home with games Friday vs BC at 7p and Sunday vs Georgia Tech at 2p. Get out and support our Cards!
43) The #9 Men’s Soccer team had a tough battle this week as they traveled to BC and escaped with a 3-2 victory in OT. Nolan Moore hit the game winner. The Cards travel to Lexington Tuesday for a game vs uk. I wish I was making this up but uk is holding an ABE-Out…..This will explain it all. SMH
46) Trying to move past that, the Cards host PITT on Friday at the LYNN……
47) Women’s Soccer went 2-0 this week at home after wins over Kent State and Syracuse! This week they will travel to FSU and Miami…. I suddenly hate them
48) From GoCards.com: University of Louisville junior Jeffrey Brown claimed the Indiana University Hoosier Classic Singles title Sunday afternoon. Coach Rex Ecarma is doing a phenominal job, Here are the full results
Louisville Men’s Tennis Results
IU Hoosier Classic
Sept. 21, 2014
Jeffrey Brown (UL) d. Matthew McCoy (IU) 7-6, 6-4
Brown d. Carsten fisher 6-4, 6-3
Santiago Salazar (UL) d. Baseem Mekawi (YSU) 6-4, 7-6
Courtney Lock (UL) d. Freddy Abunku (Xavier) 6-3,6-3
Remi Chancerel (Youngstown State) d. Pally Ray (UL) 6-3, 6-0
49) Other than knocking off little ol #1 UNC, the Filed Hockey team was in chill mode last week. This week they have 3 games! They host Ohio State tomorrow then travel to Wake on Friday then will play at Liberty on Sunday
Good job girls…good job!
50) Guessing with the de-commitment from Blakeney that the CSZ recruiting notebook will make a return soon…IMO it’s Dozier or bust for the last slot in this class. Here’s what Steve thinks..
51) Looks like the PGA is going to have a nice pair of Cards in the mix….I’m sorry for the pun
52) Gorgui Deing is predicted to have a breakout year this year in the NBA because….well because he’s great and our Gorgui!
54) Jeff Walz is on fire as if I even needed to tell you. Check out his loaded class here and let me know who you want to see as the final piece. Tweet me at @Jeremy_CSZ and let your voice be heard! My vote is for Arike Ogunbowale….
55) Finally, Thank goodness that Brock Lesnar left the arena with the title last night and my Steelers smoked the Panthers. at least one little guy I know wasn’t too sad last night. I wont say any names though. Matt Wesley. Until next time CardNation, this was 55………
You can find all previous episodes of 55 by typing 55 in thesearch bar and clicking search
P.S.-Here are videos of the Men’s basketball coaches that are excellent, enjoy!
P.S.S.- here’s the Football Intro
*some info taken from press releases, most from CSZ and my brain
**none taken from other people’s thoughts, NONE
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.
It wasn’t the prettiest game, or even very pretty at all, but the Louisville Cardinals went on the road and defeated Florida International 34-3. The Cards improved to 3-1 on the season, but this win was costly, as quarterback Will Gardner and running back L.J. Scott both left the game injured and did not return.
Gardner was hurt after linebacker Treyvon Williams hit him in his surgically repaired left knee. Looking at the replays, it looked like a cheap shot. Gardner had already thrown the ball and Williams dove low. It didn’t look very clean. I won’t speculate on the injury, but Gardner looked to be in pain as he was dragging himself on the turf. As someone who has also torn this ACL, I certainly hope it was just something minor and that he did not return because the game was in hand.
After starting the 2014 season 2-0, the Cards stumbled last week in Charlottesville as Virginia beat Louisville 23-21. Today, Bobby Petrino and the Cards will try to get back to their winning ways as they face Florida International in Miami. The perfect medicine for a team that struggled so much last week could be a game against the Panthers, who Louisville beat 72-0 last season at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium.
Can the offense get going?
The main thing that people will pay attention to today will be the offense. Louisville turned the ball over 4 times this week and only managed 282 yards of offense. Virginia leads the country with 13 takeaways so their defense is good, but we just aren’t used to that kind of performance from a Bobby Petrino offense. Will Gardner only completed 14/34 passes for 164 yards and about 7 of those passes were batted down at the line of scrimmage.
Well maybe this one isn’t in time for the whole weekend, since it’s late Friday night. But hey, life happens, and posts are sometimes difficult to get published in a timely manner. But this is still Justin Time for Saturday and Sunday at least.
Cards getting FIU at the perfect time
I will try to do an expanded prediction piece of the FIU game on Saturday morning, so I will keep this fairly brief. I think the perfect medicine for the Louisville football team following a loss at Virginia, is this game against FIU. Louisville beat this team 72-0 last season, and while some people say this FIU team has improved, that was a Charlie Strong coached team that scored 72 points. FIU will start a freshman quarterback who I think will be very overwhelmed by the speed of the Louisville defense. He and the head coach both talked about how their last opponent, Pittsburgh, was built to be big and strong and kind of slow. But Louisville is completely different and very fast. I don’t think even they realize how fast the defense is.
It seems like it is taking forever for the next game to get here. Anytime your team loses, you just want them to get back on the field as soon as possible to get the nasty taste of defeat out of your mouth. Florida International just happens to be that unfortunate team that has to play the Cards on Saturday. Although there is nothing they can do to get the win back at Virginia, you can bet that Bobby Petrino and the Louisville Cardinals will come out and play like they are trying to win two games on Saturday, not just one.
According to quarterback Will Gardner, and offensive coordinator Garrick McGee, Tuesday’s practice, the first since that loss, was a solid start to the week of preparation for FIU. “We had a really great practice,” Gardner said. “The guys were flying around making plays. I was very accurate. Things were going great today. The offensive line was finishing blocks. It was a great practice out there today.”
After taking a 23-21 loss to Virginia the Cards have dropped in a few of this weeks bowl projections. With that said the Cards still have many goals still in tact. One thing is for sure, being in the ACC should provide #CardNation with some intriguing possibilities come bowl season regardless of record.
Music City Bowl (Dec. 30) vs Missouri
Sun Bowl (Dec. 27) vs Washington
Belk Bowl (Dec. 30) vs Tennessee
TaxSlayer Bowl (Jan. 2) vs Florida
The ACC announced today that the Cards September 27th game against Wake Forest will kickoff at 3:30 pm ET. The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU. We all called for no noon home kickoffs so get those tailgates ready!!
Well Saturday was just an ugly game, there is no other way to put it. Turnovers left and right by both teams, no real rhythm, just a weird game. After the first drive by UofL, you thought that things were good and we were going to roll to an easy victory. And then the rest of the 1st quarter happened, along with the 2nd and 3rd quarters.
I was at the game, and I haven’t watched it on DVR yet, which always shows some things that you miss while at the game. So I can only go off of things that I saw from the upper level and gathered by talking to other people about the game.
First off, man it’s rough being at a road game and losing. I packed 5 shirts for the trip, all Louisville. So after the game, and on Sunday while still there for a little bit, and the trip home that takes you through West Virginia, I would be in a Louisville shirt. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Honestly the Virginia fans didn’t really say too much. They were more excited for their own team than worrying about disrespecting Louisville fans. At least that is what I saw. Their excitement doubled when they learned that Virginia Tech lost to East Carolina. So overall, they had a pretty good day.
The Louisville-Miami game ended about 2 days ago at the time I am typing this. So too much time has passed to write about that game, right? Time to move on to the next game? Nah, not just yet. A game of this magnitude can be celebrated and talked about just a little bit longer than normal games. I started going to UofL football games as early in my life that I can remember, and the games were played on astroturf on a baseball field, not too far from horse manure. Big names like Texas and Penn State came in to play, but still, Louisville was far from a big-time program.
The Cards moved into Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium beginning in the 1998 season. It was definitely a new era of Cardinal football. At the time, we were a program that was nothing more than decent, and in Conference USA. Fast forward to Monday night, and you have seen the Cards in the Big East and the American Athletic Conference. But Monday night, you saw the Cards take on the Miami Hurricanes as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Not just members, but a program that is ready to compete right away.
I remember when you could go to a gas station and get free tickets for UofL football games. I remember the smell of the Kentucky Fair and Expo Center as you are walking into old Cardinal Stadium. I remember watching Ron Cooper lead us to a 1-10 season. I think it is quite alright to let Monday’s huge game/moment last just a little bit longer than usual.
So after watching the game from my new seats in section 224, and finally watching it on DVR to catch anything I may have missed, there are some things that surprised me and some things that didn’t surprise me. I will attempt to outline them now…
My first game with Louisville as a member of the ACC was magnificent. It started out with the best CardMarch I have ever been to. It didn’t seem like I tailgated since 3pm either. I know some were out longer but that’s the earliest I could get out. Walking through the sea of CardNation after the CardMarch was amazing too. Walked by Luke Hancock, the entire UofL Basketball Team and even seen Miss Rose Bridgewater. It was a great time. Then we took the long walk to Section 9 Row GG to our seats. I thought I was gonna die. I sat down and did not move until the clock hit 0:00. (unlike 20% of the crowd) But I understood this time, Late night game, work and school tomorrow, I will give you some slack. I will not however give the 15,000 people who decided to spend the 2nd half on the party deck any slack. lol. They really should make those standing room only seats. It would increase capacity too!. The game was what I expected from a “Rookie” QB. Will Gardner did have a rough night but he didn’t do anything wrong that coaching and a nice game vs Murray State won’t fix. 3rd most yards in a opener under Petrino at QB isn’t too shabby either. Dom Brown and the entire receiving core impressed me. We said multiple people would have to step up to cover DP being out and boy did they ever. The entire Defense was amazing too. Lozo, Rankins, Kelsey AKA Mr 55 (cheap pop), Floyd, Sample, Holliman, Brown, Burgess and whoever else I forgot just made me glow.