We started doing this post last season during the week of the Spring Football game. We give you five offensive and five defensive players to watch at this Friday’s spring game. These are guys that you may have heard of, but they are not the obvious names that you surely know. For example, I did not put DeVante Parker on the list last year. Pretty sure you already knew who he was and that he was going to be a decent player for the Cards. Right?
So this is just to bring your attention to a few guys that may be under the radar, but that we expect that you will need to know by the time the season starts in September. Just as a reference, the five guys we highlighted last year on offense were:
1) Will Gardner – Was an obvious choice, but he was following Teddy. It couldn’t be ignored to watch him.
2) L.J. Scott – Had a phenomenal spring game. Didn’t see too much action during the season, but fans still knew who he was after that spring game and he should be in for a big sophomore campaign.
3) Matt Milton – Never did pan out as a big wide receiver threat in games, but I do remember him catching a touchdown in the spring game, so that made me feel good about including him.
4) Tobijah Hughley – I had never heard of him leading up to the spring game, but we included him anyway. He ended up starting 12 games at Center last season.
5) Keith Towbridge – Was only a backup in 2013, but played in all 13 games last season. Expected to be a big playmaker at tight end this season.
So what does all of that mean? Probably not much, unless you like to learn about players and then see them probably pan out as contributors during the season. You can be sitting there Friday at the game and tell your friends about these players that they don’t know about, and then you sound smart. And if these players don’t play well, then I will take the blame. Just tell them about that idiot on CardinalSportsZone.com.
So here are the five guys to watch for this Friday on offense. And the biggest one besides these five will be obvious: the Quarterback race between Reggie Bonnafon, Kyle Bolin, and Tyler Ferguson.
It is already that time of year again. Spring football begins today, and Bobby Petrino met with the media on Monday to talk about the state of the team. The Cards are in the Sweet 16 (men and women) and spring football is starting. This is a very fun time!
I’m excited to get started tomorrow. I’ve certainly been looking forward to this. It’s a new team. We have a lot of new working parts, so it will be a lot of fun to see how it all goes together, who wins competition for positions. The thing we always understand is that spring football is, number one, about our players getting better at their craft and working hard on their technique and fundamentals, working hard to become experts about what they do.
ESPN blogger Andrea Adelson says that “this could be the year of the quarterback in the ACC” since so many teams have starters returning. She also says that some teams will have a bit of intrigue at the quarterback spot this spring. Obviously, the Louisville Cardinals are one of the teams with some intrigue.
Here is her full article to get you caught up on the rest of the ACC teams and their quarterback spots. This is what she had to say about Louisville:
The following comes from Andrea Adelson, who covers the ACC for ESPN.com. She recently posted an article wrapping up the first season in the ACC for the Cards. It may not have ended how we wanted it to, but I agree that overall, it was a successful first season in our new league.
There is only one way to describe the story of Louisville’s first season in the ACC:
Especially when you consider what the Cardinals had to deal with throughout 2014. Forget about the new staff and schemes. Louisville had to go without its best player for seven games; played three different quarterbacks; and faced perhaps the toughest schedule in school history.
Video from ACC Digital Network. Looks like the Cards have made the most of their time in Charlotte so far.
Bobby Petrino did a short interview with the ACC Digital Network while at the Belk Bowl Press Conference on Wednesday. One thing that he was asked about was who would be lining up under center for the Cards. He says that Will Gardner will not be available, which we already knew. He then says that Reggie Bonnafon should be ready to go.
By now most of you have already heard but for those that have not the University of Louisville announced today that starting QB Will Gardner would miss the rest of the season due to injury. Gardner suffered an apparent knee injury in the Cards win over Boston College last Saturday. Bobby Petrino had this to say about the loss of Gardner:
“It is really unfortunate and disappointing for Will because of how hard he has worked and how respected he is in the locker room,” head coach Bobby Petrino said. “Will will continue to be an integral part of our program moving forward because of his leadership he has displayed and the respect he has in the locker room. “
Through seven games played Gardner threw for 1,669 yards and 12 touchdowns. Gardner did however have a message for CardNation via twitter
Bobby Petrino and Will Gardner met with the media on Monday afternoon to recap the loss at Clemson and preview the upcoming game against NC State. The videos are from thecrunchzone.com.
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)
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.