As me and my brother Joey and my friend Chris were hanging out this summer, we started to realize that both Basketball and Football season were right around the corner. This was the football season we had been waiting on for 4 seasons after suffering thru Krags tenure and then Charlies strong first year. (pun intended) We talked about that for awhile and then naturally after I said we had a chance to go undefeated and chris predicted his usual doom, we started looking ahead to basketball season. We started to go over the roster and then we got a little edgy. Who was gonna take over for Preston? Was it one of our fab freshman? It had to be Kuric if not,Chris Smith. We went thru every name we could think of but theres one name that was never uttered…..Russ Smith.
Did I just say Russ Smith? The new instant Offense at UL, or spark plug or our little energizer bunny as some people call him. Never in a million years would i have thought that he would be our go to guy. The evidence from his freshman year seemed to support our ommision of his name from our talk. I highly doubt that other than some family and friends that anyone in america had evr saw traces or flashes of greatness like we have this year. That anyone in the US had the confidence that Russ would ever become anything is just outlandish. OK thats going a little far, isnt it? When one of my best friends from College, Troy Jackson AKA Escalade (RIP) called me and said that he called up coach Mass and scheduled a meeting with him and Coach P so he could pitch a player to him should have been the exact minute i believed. Troy had an excellent eye for talent and i should have taken his words more serious when he called me that night from the Big East tournament. I should have believed..
Russ Smith however was the reason I didnt believe in Russ Smith. he had a freshman year filled with very little playing time and a broken foot that would have broken the spirit of most players. When he did get on the floor he just didnt feel like he belonged and did not play very well. The reason I didnt believe that Russ was ever gonna make it here however were the words that came out of his mouth at the end of the Basketball season. He told me on Facebook that he was leaving Louisville and he was gonna find another place to play basketball. I could tell his spirit was broken and that he was ready to give up. It didnt take too long before he gave me another reason I should have believed. About 10 minutes later he said to me that he couldnt let Coach P down like that,his family like that and most of all, he couldnt let himself down like that. It could have been real easy for him to give up considering his playing time issues, his broken foot at the begining of the season and most importantly the passing of our dear friend Troy. But he did not give up, much like he did not give up saturday against uk. So Russ when you read this just know that Card Nation is proud of you and very thankful that you are here and that you are preservering thru all of the adversity. Did I just write a blog about Russ Smith? Yes I did…..insert Cheesy Russ Grin…..