David Hale of ESPN.com was asked to make some fearless predictions this week. He came up with his top 10 for the ACC. To many outside of Louisville, Will Gardner will be a shock and an absolute treat to watch. His full story can be seen here. Here’s my fearless prediction for Will, 3500 yards passing. It would put him in 6th place all-time for a single season right behind my old teammate Chris Redman’s Sr campaign of 3,647. That’s about as fearless as I can get this season. It also may be due to the fact we are so close to football I can taste it and am being really generous. On that note Dom Brown will rush for 2000 yards and Lozo will have 21 sacks. OK…I have calmed down a little but I will stick with my Gardner prediction. Gardner will be magnificent this year. I Can’t wait to utter the words…The Gardner did it!
In a move that is not a big surprise, Bobby Petrino officially announced that sophomore Will Gardner will be the starting quarterback for the Louisville Cardinals. Although it was expected, it is still news that it is official, and it just means that we are so close to the season starting!
Al Golden, head coach of the Miami Hurricanes, announced that true freshman Brad Kaaya will be the starting quarterback for the ‘Canes when they take the field on September 1 against the Louisville Cardinals. Kaaya beat out senior Jake Heaps, who has also played for BYU and Kansas in his career.
Kaaya is 6’4 and around 206 pounds from West Hills, California. Both Rivals and 247 Sports listed him as a 4-star prospect coming out of high school, so the kid can play. The following excerpt comes from USAToday.com:
Bobby Petrino spoke at media day on Saturday morning for about 40 minutes. He talked about how the team has looked in practice, who some play-makers are, how he makes his opening script for a game, and more. Here are some of the key things he talked about…
*Will Gardner – Petrino said that Gardner is doing a good job and that the staff is throwing a lot at him. He said that Will probably feels like he isn’t executing like he was in the Spring, and he isn’t, but it just takes time.
*Reggie Bonnafon – Petrino has done nothing but rave about the freshman from Trinity since he got to campus. From his athleticism to his ability to make plays, you can really tell that Petrino likes Reggie. This past week, Bonnafon moved up to the veterans practice, and Kyle Bolin moved to the newcomers practice. Petrino talked about Bonnafon’s ability to run and makes plays with his feet. He says he hasn’t had a guy who could do that since Stefan LeFors.
It’s getting to be that time where the national publications release their preseason college football polls. There will be many different ones of course. This one is from Lindy’s, who have the Cards at #31 on their countdown. I would expect this to be about where most magazines and other media outlets have the Cards, somewhere around that #25 mark. Many factors will contribute to that. Yes there is a lot of talent back, but the uncertainty of a new QB, replacing 3 first round NFL Draft picks, and everything you already know about.
Here is what Lindy’s says about the Cards in 2014…(They mention Robert Clark, but of course he has transferred to Samford.)
Bobby Petrino met with members of the media on Thursday afternoon to give an update on the team, much like Rick Pitino did just a week or so ago. There may not have been any breaking news at this press conference, but I love knowing that the season is now less than 7 weeks away! Just hearing Petrino talk about the players and the scheme and the schedule, it has to get you fired up! Ok, it doesn’t have to, but that would be nice so I am not the only one.
You can check out the video here from thecrunchzone.com. As always, we appreciate their coverage of these things. Below that I have listed some of the key points in case you don’t have time to watch the whole video.
*Petrino is excited about the gains that the team has made in the weight room. He says it will be exciting in a couple weeks when they do their testing to see how much stronger they are and what type of shape they are in.
*He is very excited about the attitudes and work ethic of the players.
ESPN.com blogger Andrea Adelson recently was able to interview Louisville tight end Gerald Christian, and she posted that on the ACC blog on Monday. Christian looks to have a big season under Bobby Petrino, and I couldn’t agree more. While I think every player on offense will have their best season so far, Christian will be a mismatch for nearly anyone that tries to cover him. He should thrive this season.
Here is the interview posted on ESPN.com…
How much more will you be used in the Louisville pass game this year?
A: Coach Petrino, he’s known for using his tight ends and he’s a great coach. I like how he takes his personnel and utilizes their strengths. He’s going to take me and put me in position to be one-on-one against a linebacker and one-on-one against a safety, where he targets me to have mismatches to exploit the defense. Last year, the offense was just learning plays, whereas Coach Petrino takes his playmakers and targets them more to make plays.
Phil Steele released his Preseason All-ACC teams today, and there were plenty of Louisville Cardinals getting some recognition. DeVante Parker and Jake Smith were the only players to make the first team, although he has Smith as a center. Smith moved to guard in spring practice. On the second team, you will see Lorenzo Mauldin as a defensive end, even though he will basically be a linebacker/defense end hybrid this season. But it’s whatever. In all, 12 different Cards made the list. Charles Gaines is on it twice because he runs with animals.
Of the 12 players on the 1st Team Offense, Florida State has 6 of them. So they will probably be pretty good this season.
Here are the teams. What do you think?
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.
With Friday’s spring football game quickly approaching, I thought it would be a good idea to give you a few players to watch. Surely, you all know about guys like DeVante Parker, Dominique Brown, Eli Rogers, and others that have made a name for themselves already. But this list will be guys who maybe haven’t gotten much playing time to this point because they were playing behind someone else, or maybe because they were in high school last year!
So while you are at the game on Friday night, and some guys are making plays and you look at your roster to see who it was, you can say “Hey I read about this guy on Cardinal Sports Zone!” Ok maybe that’s just my goal for 1 person to do that, but we will see.
ESPN.com’s Andrea Adelson was recently in Louisville to take in spring practice and talk to head coach Bobby Petrino. In her article, she talks about how different things are now with Petrino and staff back in charge. At the bottom of this post, there is a link to the original post on ESPN.com that also has the video interview with Petrino. Here is some of Adelson’s article…
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – It is hard to miss the giant poster of Teddy Bridgewater hanging in the lobby of the Louisville football complex, celebrating the Cardinals’ momentous win over Florida in the Allstate Sugar Bowl two years ago.
Bridgewater’s rise was concurrent to the football program’s latest ascent to national prominence, but the truth is he was the most notable player on a defensive-minded football team led by a defensive-minded coach who stressed a physical, ball-control style of football that did not always showcase its talented quarterback.
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.
Head coach Bobby Petrino spoke to the media after Saturday’s scrimmage at the Trager Indoor Practice Facility. He talks about Will Gardner, DeVante Parker, and wraps up the first week of spring practice.
Quarterback Will Gardner, linebacker Keith Kelsey, and defensive lineman Sheldon Rankins also spoke to the media after practice.
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.
This article was posted Monday morning on ESPN.com by Andrea Adelson. She talks about the many challenges that Bobby Petrino will face in his first season back at UofL where he will have to replace a lot of really good players.
By Andrea Adelson:
There are universal challenges every first-year coach must face, whether he is a veteran or a newbie: getting to know new players, implementing schemes, setting a foundation, making sure there is buy-in across the locker room.
Then there is the challenge facing Bobby Petrino at Louisville. As he embarks on his second stint with the Cardinals, he has to go through all these getting-to-know you moments while also:
Here are the main points that Petrino made…
*When asked about the status of Sharieff Rhaheed-Muhammad, Petrino said “Well we’re well aware of it. It’s something that was shocking and concerning. But you have to let the court system play out. And it’s one of those things where you don’t make a decision until you have to.”
*About DeVante Parker: “Yeah he’s really impressive. He puts a smile on my face. And the thoughts of how we can use him and utilize him and get him the ball…I think he can run all the routes. He does a great job getting in and out of his breaks. He can catch the ball away from his body. He works hard and he’s been very coach-able. That was something that I was very happy to see. Obviously we know he can elevate and go up and catch the ball when it’s high in the air. He should have a great year for us. He needs to learn and get better just like everybody else.”
Here is the official press release from UofL about Teddy Bridgewater declaring for the 2014 NFL Draft. We posted earlier this afternoon that he was doing that, but this includes quotes from Teddy.
LOUISVILLE, Ky.- University of Louisville junior quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has decided to forgo his final year of collegiate eligibility, and make himself available for the 2014 NFL Draft.
In our first position breakdown for the 2013 football season, we will take a look at the Quarterback position for the Louisville Cardinals. I thought about just putting a picture of Teddy and that would be the whole post. But since you are taking the time to check out the site (appreciated by the way), I will return the favor by giving just a little bit more information than just that. And no, I would not have really just put a picture for this post.
6’3 196 lbs