College Football News previews the Louisville Cardinals

Photo: Tim Haag/
Photo: Tim Haag/

College Football News has a good preview of the 2015 Louisville Cardinals. As we start July, any football preview is a good thing because the season can not get here soon enough. But this particular preview seems to actually be accurate about the team, which you don’t always get from national publications.

Here are a fer excerpts from the preview. You can read the full post by clicking the link above.

What to watch for on offense: Bonnafon’s job to lose. Louisville has three experienced quarterbacks vying for the job, four when Will Gardner returns this summer from a 2014 ACL tear. But despite not yet getting a full-throated endorsement from the staff, sophomore Reggie Bonnafon was the best-looking Cardinal hurler in the spring. A year after starting five games as a true freshman, he’s noticeably bigger, stronger and faster. And there’s been more zip on his passes and confidence in his step. Bonnafon is also by far the best athlete of the quartet, essential in a year that Louisville could struggle to win at the line of scrimmage.

What to watch for on defense: Devonte’s final second chance. Former TCU—and JUCO—star Devonte Fields is an immense talent, with the pass rushing skills to flourish as an outside linebacker with the Cardinals. But a checkered past has made for an uncertain future. Louisville under Bobby Petrino is quickly becoming a place where troubled youths descend to rehabilitate their images and redirect their football life. If Fields makes the most of this opportunity, NFL scouts will flock to Papa John’s, and the Card linebacker corps will be among the nastiest in the FBS.

The team will be far better if… it gets a better handle on the ball. While the Cardinals only threw 10 interceptions in 13 games last year, they consistently treated the ball as if it was a greased pigskin. They coughed it up 25 times, losing 16 to rank 116th in the country. Conversely, the Cards were 120th in the country with four fumble recoveries, underscoring the program’s struggles with turnover margin in 2014. Louisville dropped heartbreakers to Virginia, Clemson and Florida State that might have gone the other way if ball security wasn’t such a problem.

The Schedule: The Cardinals get their chance to make a massive national statement right away with the showdown against Auburn in Atlanta to kick off the season. Win that, and it’s Game On.
– UofL will know where it stands in the ACC Atlantic world by mid-October, hosting Clemson on a Thursday night and going to Florida State on October 17th. Win those two, and book tickets for the ACC title game. Split, and the ACC title is still a possibility.
– There are two nice runs, with three home games in a row early on, and a stretch of three home games in four with the road game at Wake Forest.
– With Auburn first and Kentucky last – both away from Louisville – the Samford scrimmage is more than okay in the middle of the season. However …
– WATCH OUT FOR … Houston. The Cougars should be front and center in the American Athletic race, and they should be just dangerous enough to pose a major challenge considering the Cardinals play Auburn a week earlier and Clemson five days after.

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