Justin Time for the Weekend: 10/3/14

Justin Time

On this week’s edition of “Justin Time,” I talk about two of the most beloved Louisville Cardinals of all time, Teddy Bridgewater and Russ Smith. Both guys are beginning that next chapter in their lives and careers, but they will always be Cards. I also talk a little bit about why this Syracuse football game is so much more exciting than it has ever been before, and a little bonus video at the end of the post.

Teddy Bridgewater: Pondering

Teddy Bridgewater

Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “ponder” as: to weigh in the mind; to think about, reflect on. Also to think or consider especially quietly, soberly, and deeply. While watching the Vikings play on Thursday night against the Packers, it was clear that Teddy Bridgewater was “Pondering” as Christian Ponder completed 22 of 44 passes for 222 yards with 0 touchdowns and 2 interceptions.

After Sunday’s 41-28 win over the Atlanta Falcons in which Teddy threw for 317 yards, he was forced to watch that performance from the sidelines last night. Much like “Tebowing,” where a pose turns into a verb, we can now say that with “Pondering.” We can also define it as: Watching a former first round pick embarrass himself on national TV while ensuring that there will be no QB controversy the rest of this season.

Russ Smith returning to the Yum!

At 7:30 on Saturday night, Russ Smith will make his return to the KFC Yum! Center. It will be weird, as Russ is now a member of the New Orleans Pelicans, and not the Louisville Cardinals. What’s ironic is that this NBA exhibition game between the Pelicans and Miami Heat was scheduled long before the NBA Draft. Russ just happened to be selected to be a Pelican, making this exhibition very exciting for local fans.

Adam Himmelsbach of the Courier-Journal spoke with Russ Smith about how he is feeling leading up to this weekend and his return to Louisville. Although he has already moved on and is on another team now, this will be a good chance for fans to say goodbye and wish Russ well, as he moves on to the next part of his basketball life. Fans of the NBA may be counting him out, but here in Louisville, we know better than that. Good luck Russ!

Learning about the Orange

I must say that this whole move to the ACC has changed how I feel about our conference opponents. In the past when we were in the Big East, an upcoming game against Syracuse didn’t really excite me all that much. I didn’t care to learn about their team, they were just another opponent. Things couldn’t be more different for me now. Just the fact that this is now an ACC game puts it on another level to me.

I find myself looking up press conference videos and notes from Syracuse just to learn more about their head coach and their players. I have reached out to their beat writer for Syracuse.com, who knows the team inside and out. He sent me some great insight into their team, which was a great way to learn for me.

Every game from here on out this season is huge. No game is an easy win. The Cards will either be small favorites or underdogs the rest of the season. So each week just has that “survive and advance” feel to it. Yes, it’s Syracuse and they may not be a football power, but this will be a tough game on the road. Just get the win and let’s get to 5-1 and 3-1 in the ACC.

Gone are the days of “Well our next 3 games are Memphis, Temple, and USF. So let’s win those three and then we have a big game against…” That isn’t how it works anymore, and I love it. I never thought I would care to learn a lot about Syracuse Orange football, but this ACC thing makes football season so much better for me.

And if you care to learn more about Syracuse, here are all of the links from this week in one spot for you.

So this happened last week…

Eric Church

Here is a little bonus section of Justin Time, where I stray away from sports for a bit. As you know if you follow me on twitter, facebook, or actually know me, I am a pretty big fan of Eric Church. Last Thursday at the KFC Yum! Center, I attended my 15th Eric Church show. Sounds crazy, I know. But honestly most of those shows were before he was a big name, so they were at smaller places and very cheap. I have been attending his concerts since 2007 when he was playing in bars like Coyote’s and places even smaller than that.

Needless to say, it was my WIFE that was lucky enough to get a meet and greet for the show last Thursday. In the e-mail they sent her, it asked her questions like how long she has been a fan, the furthest trip she has made to see him, and so on. So in her response, she told them all about how we have been supporters since 2007 and have pretty much been there from the start. She also mentioned the time we did get to meet him in Chattanooga 7 years ago before many people knew about him.

Apparently, that was a great response because of about 60 people at the meet and greet, they called out her name and had a surprise for her. They sent her to the back of the line so she would be last to meet Eric. So here is what she got: a hand written letter from him welcoming her to the show and telling her to pick out a song from a list of about 8 songs that they don’t really play anymore. It would be the only time on this tour that they play it. He told her not to tell him her choice at that time, but wait until he asked her at the show. Oh, and he also gave her pit passes for our entire group so we were right next to the stage all night!

This led to a hilarious moment. Her choice was “Ain’t Killed Me Yet,” a song that apparently they don’t play much anymore haha. Check out the video, shot by my friend Wil Grant. She makes her choice, and completely stumps the band for a little bit. Oh, and as he is walking over, he does point to me and say “Are you Justin?”

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