For the first time all season, the Louisville offense appeared out of sorts in the first quarter. Lamar started the game missing receivers, forcing passes, and the running game was never really there for the speedy quarterback. Once the offense settled down, we saw the nation’s top ranked offense do what we’ve become accustomed to, put a lot of points on the scoreboard.
Louisville’s offense recorded a season low 7 points in the first quarter. Then the second quarter began. Lamar found his tight end, Cole Hikutini in the end zone twice, ran for a score, and then found Reggie Bonnafon in the end zone to close out a 28 point second quarter to go into halftime up 35-7. The announcers were not shy in their disappointment in the Louisville offense early on. It seemed as though no matter what the offense did right, there was always something they could’ve been doing better. As a fan, I’ve never experienced a team being so critiqued while building an insurmountable lead but that’s where we are now in the program which is a great thing.
Welcome back to another edition of Around the Bases, where we look at what a spectacular week it was for the Cardinals.
It began on April 12th, when the Cardinals traveled to Lexington and beat rival Kentucky 9-6 for their fifth straight win in the rivalry.
Welcome back to another edition of Around the Bases, and this is possibly the biggest week for Louisville baseball all season.
Last weekend was very tumultuous for the Cardinals team. After having the game at Kentucky postponed due to rain, they immediately traveled to Tallahassee to face Florida State. The Cardinals lost the series (7-12 Fri., 7-1 Sat., 5-16 Sun.), making it their second series defeat in the ACC this season. The Cardinals did not lose any series against ACC opponents last season, and the Cardinals dropped to 3-6 against Top 25 opponents on the road in 2016. The Cardinals returned home yesterday and thumped Western Kentucky 14-2, improving to a 20-1 record at home.
Welcome back to Around the Bases, which has not been rained out today.
Last weekend was business as usual for Louisville, as the Cardinals swept the Hokies. With wins of 8-4 (Fri.), 13-0 (Sat.) and 9-3 (Sun.), the Cardinals have a six-game winning streak heading into another big weekend at Florida State. Florida State currently holds a two-game lead over Louisville in the ACC Atlantic Division, and a series win could be big in clinching back-to-back division titles for the Cardinals.
Andrea Adelson published her way-too-early 2016 ACC football rankings on ESPN.com. To no surprise, Clemson and Florida State still top the list, with Louisville right behind them. The Cards return a lot of talent and should be good, but we can’t act like those two teams are suddenly going to fall off. 2016 should be a fun year for sure. Here is what she had to say about the top 3 teams.
I am going to enjoy the heck out of typing this post about college football. By the way, is this the WORST time ever as a Louisville fan to have a bye week in football? Either way, there are some important games that Cards fans can keep up with tomorrow that could have a lot of say in the ACC race, which Louisville is still in by the way.
BOBBY PETRINO: Well, we’re coming off a tough loss at home against Clemson, a very good football team where our players competed extremely hard and got into position in the fourth quarter where we had an opportunity to win the game and just weren’t able to do it. We had a good practice yesterday, and our guys are working hard, and we’re anxious to get back on the field and play another game on Saturday.
Q. Kyle Bolin and Lamar Jackson you’ve used in the last couple of games on kind of that quarterback carousel, seeing which one is going to get things going. How do you look at it going forward with these two guys and what you’ve seen so far? Is it a two-quarterback system? Does one guy kind of show more than the other at this point?
There are so many story lines from Thursday night’s Clemson game. There have been big moments in all three games for the Louisville Cardinals this season. This post is not about second guessing play calls, timeouts, or anything else. This isn’t a post to say how the Cards have lost all three games by a combined 13 points, so things could easily be much different. We all know that. There are other posts designed for that information. This post is to simply pose the question:
Didn’t we sign up for football schedules like this?
Transcript of Bobby Petrino’s comments:
A new tradition has started this season. The Red Rage Tailgate and Cardinal Sports Zone are awarding a trophy at each home game to what we see as the Tailgate of the Week. When this idea started, it was assumed that it would go to a UofL tailgate every single time, no questions asked.
Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. tonight between the Louisville Cardinals and the Clemson Tigers. The home fans are encouraged to wear black. The team will be wearing black uniforms. The atmosphere in Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium should be electric. It’s Thursday night, and Louisville fans seem to get way more jacked up for these games than any other games.
By the time the game ends around 11:00 or so, this season will look completely different than it does when the game kicks off tonight. With a win, the Cards are 1-0 in the ACC and would have just beaten the preseason conference favorite. They would now be in the driver’s seat in the division, and an ACC Championship is absolutely within grasp. A loss drops this team to 0-3, with over a week until the next game for every player, coach, and decision to be second guessed by every “coach” in social media land. So what is on the line tonight? The driver’s seat in the ACC, or 0-3. This truly is a fork in the road for the season.
I must admit that I do love Clemson’s youtube channel. So many videos of players and coaches during the week talking about the next game. A lot of great access. Maybe we will get there one day. Here are some videos to help you pass the time until 7:30 on Thursday night!
DABO SWINNEY: We’re looking forward to traveling up to Louisville here in just a little while today, and excited about having the opportunity to play on Thursday night. Louisville has got an excellent football team loaded with good personnel, and for us, this is our first road trip with a bunch of young guys, so anxious to see how they play and how they respond to that challenge. As far as our health of our team, I think we’re in pretty good shape. We did lose Ryan Norton for this game, but hopefully Jay Guillermo will step in and do a great job for us. But we’ve got a lot of respect for Louisville. This is a game last year that went down to literally the last play, and don’t expect it to be any different this week. They present a lot of challenges on both sides of the ball and in the kicking game, and obviously they’re well-coached, and then this is the first ACC game division game for us. Both of us have the same goals and that’s to win this division so we have a chance to compete for this conference. So big game tomorrow night, and looking forward to seeing our team compete and play.
Q. The relationship between quarterback Deshaun Watson and wide receiver Charone Peake, just obviously what you can say last game, they showed that, but what you’ve seen from them as they’ve grown together on the team?
BOBBY PETRINO: We’re working hard on our preparation for Clemson. It’s been a short week, so we came in and practiced Sunday night, had a good practice there. Our players have had a very good attitude and worked extremely hard, came back and practiced physical on Monday, and then yesterday was a Thursday for us. So with the short week of preparation, I’ve been happy with our attitude and our work ethic. We know we’re facing a very, very good football team, and it’s going to be a big challenge for us.
Q. Starting off 0-2 in 2015, obviously the games have been close. Now when you look back on film and you’ve had some time to kind of digest the two, what are some of the biggest takeaways you have right now on some of those key areas that you want to try and minimize those issues?
Louisville head coach Bobby Petrino met with the media on Monday evening after practice to talk about Thursday’s game against Clemson. He recaps the Houston game a little bit, talks about the quarterback situation, the disappointment of the defense, and more.
Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney previewed the Cards in his weekly press conference. A lot of good stuff here. He talks about how the 0-2 record for Louisville doesn’t matter, how his team is excited for a big road game, the height of the receivers for the Cards, and much more.
I don’t need a video to get hyped for this Thursday’s game…but this certainly doesn’t hurt either. Still don’t know how James Quick got caught. *sigh*
It doesn’t matter how many times you hear it or tell people, there will always be some that don’t know. Hopefully this reaches a few of those people. This Thursday’s game against Clemson is, in fact, a blackout. What does that mean? The team will be wearing black, and you should be too. Just do it. It looks cool when everybody does it. If you don’t, you aren’t that rebel or funny person that doesn’t. You are the one that everybody points at as the guy (or gal) that ruined it or somehow just didn’t know. So spread the word…blackout Thursday!