Man, what a wild ride this season was.
The 2016 season for the Louisville Football Cardinals was certainly a memorable one, although at times, it was for both the right and wrong reasons. Now that the dust has settled on one of the more noteworthy seasons in Cardinal Football history, its time to look back and ask ourselves: “Where are we now? Are we on the right track? What is the current state of the Louisville Football program?”
The piece was originally supposed to be a tag team live stream open discussion with Jeremy and I, following the Houston game. Prior to that game, Louisville was 9-1, and we had every reason to believe that we still had a legitimate shot to crack the top 4 in the College Football Playoff rankings. While we still needed help from other teams, we still had hope that with our Heisman candidate quarterback and our high-octane offense, that we could still find a way.
Tonight it was made official. Lamar Jackson was named a Heisman Trophy finalist. Lamar & 4 other athletes were invited to New York for the ceremony which will air live at 8pm on ESPN. Here is the official release and the presser via periscope.
Also here are a few graphics showing how impressive this year was overall:
(Click more for the rest of the story)
Lamar Jackson has been named a finalist for the Maxwell Award and the Davey O’Brien Award. The Maxwell Award is presented to the nation’s best player, and the Davey O’Brien Award goes to the nation’s top quarterback. Lamar is also considered to be the leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy. The Heisman is awarded annually to the most outstanding player in college football whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity. Winners epitomize great ability combined with diligence, perseverance, and hard work. Read the rest of this entry
Well, I put off writing this as long as I could but here it is. Even after a full day to let what took place on Thursday fully sink in, I still am dumbfounded at what I watched happen. In my lifetime as a Louisville fan, I have never seen a performance like the one on Thursday, regardless of sport. Everything was right there for this team to take and make an undeniable case for their inclusion in the College Football Playoff, and the lack of preparation, execution, and adjustment is just unacceptable. Lamar Jackson has every right to personally put the Offensive Line through sprints and I sincerely hope he voiced his frustrations (in a leadership way, of course). 11 sacks allowed (a school record for most allowed) against the most elusive quarterback in college football (possibly in the history of college football) is impressive for all the wrong reasons.
Sometimes it’s not how great you are but rather what year you are great. It’s my opinion that Lamar Jackson will easily win the Heisman trophy and if not for Lamar then Deshaun Watson would win. Sorry Deshaun, you were born in the wrong year. Another obstacle that hindered his chances were expectations. He had a great year last year and was third in the Heisman voting thus he was a preseason favorite for the Heisman. All eyes were on him from the first snap of the year. Lamar entered the season as a young quarterback on the rise but nobody expected this. Lamar held 100-1 Vegas odds to win the Heisman in May. He currently is at 1-30. Read the rest of this entry
Where to Watch: 8:00 ET Tonight, ESPN
Betting Line: LOU -14.5, O/U 68.5
Last Time: In a tight contest throughout, Houston forced four turnovers in the game and got a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to upset Louisville 34-31. Greg Ward had 334 total yards (236 passing, 98 rushing) and three touchdowns to lead the Cougars, while Lamar Jackson was benched in the fourth quarter for Kyle Bolin. Bolin led two fourth quarter touchdown drives but fell short in the end, as a game-tying 53-yard field goal was tipped and fell short.
The all-time series between the Cougars and Cardinals is tied at 8-8.
The odds that Lamar Jackson have gotten the past few weeks have been silly. There’s no way they get any more ridiculous. Is there?
Where to Watch: 7:00 p.m, ESPN2
Betting Line: LOU -35, O/U 55 (ESPN)
Last Time: Forcing five turnovers and holding Wake Forest to a completion under 33%, Louisville escaped Winston-Salem with a 20-19 win over the Demon Deacons. Lamar Jackson had a stellar night passing, going 19-for-26 for 207 yards and two touchdowns, both to Jamari Staples (10 rec., 133 yards). However, Jackson would leave the game early due to injury.
Louisville is undefeated in the series, holding a 3-0 record against Wake Forest (including the 2006 Orange Bowl).
About the Wake Forest Demon Deacons
Entering tomorrow night’s game at Louisville, the Demon Deacons are 6-3, making them bowl eligible for the first time since 2011. Wake Forest accomplished that by winning five of their first six games, including solid road wins against Duke and Indiana. Other than a 33-16 loss against NC State, WF has hung in there against every team, including a 17-6 loss at Florida State.
The fact that Wake Forest was able to hold FSU down to only 17 points on the road is a huge testament to their head coach, Dave Clawson. But they’ve also had a lot of close games, mostly due to a Wake offense that is 119th in the nation. Their defense, however, has kept the Deacons alive in almost every game up to this point, including a +8 in turnover margin (tied for 13th in the nation). You will always stay alive if you can put the ball back in your team’s hands, and that’s where Clawson’s defense has excelled up to this point.
Where to Watch: Noon on ESPN2
Odds: LOU -25, O/U 55
Last Time: Louisville grinded out a 17-14 win over Boston College, overcoming four turnovers to start a late-season surge where the Cardinals won six of their final eight games in 2015. Louisville’s defense played an outstanding game, holding a paltry Boston College offense to 79 total yards (-14 rushing). Lamar Jackson had 245 total yards (230 passing, 15 rushing) and a rushing touchdown, while Sheldon Rankins added a 46-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
Louisville leads the all-time series 5-3, with the Cardinals winning the last three since joining the ACC.
It wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t the way we pictured it, but the number 5 team in the nation got an important road win against Virginia. The Cavaliers always seem to give the Cards a hard time, even and especially when they are over-matched. Two years ago, the Cavaliers pulled off the stunning upset over the then top-25 ranked Cardinals, last year it was battle the whole game with a late score to put the game away, this year’s game followed the same script. The Cardinals found themselves down 10-7 at halftime, the lowest point total in a half this season. And with 1:57 left to play, Louisville found themselves in dangerous territory down 25-24, then Lamar pulled off maybe his most memorable Heisman moment yet.
After what many considered to be a sub par performance against Duke last week, the Louisville football team bounced back in impressive fashion. The Cardinals thumped the Wolfpack from the opening snap and never looked back. The final score read Louisville 54-N.C. State 13, and it could’ve been worse had it not been for a scoreless 3rd quarter from the Cards.
NFL.com posted this article compating Lamar’s touchdown pace with previous Heisman winners. Where does Lamar stand versus some of the best to ever play the game? You already know. Through 7 games Lamar has 34 touchdowns. Here is a list from the article of recent Heisman winner through 7 games… Read the rest of this entry
Lamar was remarkable today once again. A statement was made today and that statement was: give me the Heisman. Lamar Jackson accounted for 431 yards and 4 touchdowns and set the single season record for touchdowns in a season. (34). Here is a highlight video put together by the ACC Digital Network showcasing his gr8 day.
Before this football season started we as Louisville fans had high expectations. We heard Robert Patrick Petrino say the goal was to win a national championship and he wanted to get back to lighting up the scoreboard. Petrino’s words did nothing to temper expectations. Most realistic Louisville fans knew that winning a national championship was a long shot. Making the college football playoffs seemed like a long shot also but most believed that we had a better shot to make the playoffs than Kentucky had to make a bowl game. So you’re saying there’s a chance. Read the rest of this entry
We are halfway through the season and NFL.com has released their predictions for the various player awards. The Heisman, offensive & defensive player of the year awards to name a few. Spoiler Alert: A certain Card is on a few of the lists. You will never guess who. (sarcasm font)
In another great video from Jeff Fischel & the ACC Digital Network, they spotlight Lamar Jackson & his quest for the Heisman. A silver lining in the cloudy sky, this should make your day a little brighter.
First things first, wow. What happened inside Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium yesterday still hasn’t fully hit me yet. The No. 2 ranked Florida State Seminoles came to Louisville having beaten the Cardinals two times in a row since Louisville joined the ACC. For the first time ever, College Gameday was in town and the city, fans, and players in Louisville uniforms were electric.
Bovada sports book in Las Vegas updated their 2016 Heisman Trophy odds to win. Lamar was 100-1. He is now 50-1. Still a long shot but gaining more respect and only entering his sophomore year. Here is the full list,