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Five Stories to Watch in Spring Football

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Spring football is underway in Louisville, as Bobby Petrino looks to return with Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson and a bevvy of studs. A new defensive coordinator, depth at skill positions and offensive line play will headline the top stories of U of L’s spring football in 2017. Louisville will also have open practice for fans on March 24th, March 28th and April 4th, with the Spring Game set for April 15th.

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ICYMI: News & Notes From Petrino’s Spring Ball Press Conference

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Yesterday we got to hear from head coach Bobby Petrino for the first time since National Signing Day last month, and we came away with a few interesting tidbits thus far.

Cornerback Shaq Wiggins and offensive lineman Chandler Jones will both be transferring for the University of Louisville. It is unknown whete they will heading, but we wish them both the best of luck.

Cornerback Alphonso Carter has been suspended from the team. Last month, he was found to have a loaded gun in his possession with no license to carry after he was pulled over for running a red light.

Wide receiver Jaylen Smith and outside linebacker Jonathan Greenard will miss all of spring ball due to both of them in recovery from surgeries. Smith had surgery of stress fracture in his foot while Greenard had hip surgery.

On the positive side, Petrino announced that defensive end James Hearns has fully recovered from his surgery and is now a “full go”. Henry Famurewa is still in partial recovery, but will see some action on the practice field. Trevon Young will also see some work on the practice field after missing all of last season with a hip injury.

BucketHatism: Spring Practice

“ALL RISE!!! Court is now in session. The honorable Bucket Hat King LJ tha Fiasco presiding. Please be seated and come to order”

Please be seated, the BHK is back off his weekend bender of wings, basketball and busted brackets to announce that the joy that is football is back for the month of April.  Today Bobby Petrino held his presser to give us all a glimpse of what to expect and what the team will be working on.  I know I am not the only Card fan that still has a sour taste in my mouth from how last season ended. We went from the highs of curb stomping FSU, receiving a visit from College Gameday, and a prime-time game in Death Valley to seeing Lamar nearly decapitated in Houston, watching the Governor’s Cup get kidnapped, and watching LSU do the cha-cha slide in our backfield for 4 quarters………but I digress.

The thing is, as young as this team was last year they are back and more experienced. More importantly they are pissed off at how they ended the season after being 9-1 on the verge of the playoffs.  Lamar winning the Heisman salvaged the disappointing ending but you have to think the team is still very much hungry for redemption.  Here some things, and players that the BHK is interested to see in the Spring game.

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Recruit Spotlight: Russ Yeast

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Russ Yeast

@russ_yeast03

5′ 10″, 175lbs
Athlete (RB/WR/CB)
Greenwood, IN

A two-way star, Russ Yeast is a speedy and agile playmaker at the Wide Receiver, Running Back and Cornerback positions out of Center Grove HS in Greenwood, IN. His senior season, he helped lead Center Grove HS to a 12-2 record, and lead them all the way to the IHSAA 6A title game. That season while both an offensive and defensive specialist, his specialization was on the offensive side of the ball, where he averaged 8.2 yards per carry as well as 18.8 yards per catch. He totaled 2,127 offensive yards and 27 total offensive touchdowns. When matched up against Russ Yeast, you better be ready for a track meet, cause he will beat you with his speed and elusiveness on the gridiron. The son of former UK great Craig Yeast, Russ decided to pave his own path and commit with their in state rival. He cited his fondness for Louisville growing up and them being the best fit both academically and athletically for him as his main reason for committing to the University of Louisville.

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Nunnsense: Meanwhile, Over At The Football Complex…

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It’s March and all eyes are on the top 10 men’s basketball team, the top 12 women’s basketball team and the number 1 college baseball team. All three of those teams deserve every ounce of praise and respect that the get. They have earned it and we are all very proud of them.  Read the rest of this entry

Recruit Spotlight: CJ Avery

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CJ Avery

@Averyy_Sports

6’1″, 200 lbs
Strong Safety
Grenada, MS

An enforcer on the defensive side of the ball, CJ Avery is a hard-hitting safety out of Grenada HS in Grenada, MS. His senior season, he helped lead Grenada HS to a 9-3 overall record, as well as a berth in the Mississippi Class 5A state playoffs. That season, he made his presence known to opposing offenses, logging 57 solo tackles (61 total), averaging 5.1 tackles a game. He also forced 2 fumbles and recovering 1, as well as intercepting 2 passes with 1 being a pick six. Avery is defensive back who’s not afraid to line up in the box with the linebackers, pin his ears back and make the hard hit, having a specialty in stopping the run. Facing tremendous pressure to stay in state and attend either Ole Miss or Mississippi State, he made the gutsy decision to take his talents out-of-state, citing his love of the coaching staff and their involvement in the recruiting process, as well as calling Louisville “like home” on his official visit.

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Recruit Spotlight: Malik Cunningham

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Malik Cunningham

@MalikMalikc10

6’0″, 187 lbs
Quarterback
Montgomery, AL

One of the first recruits to commit for the class of 2017, Malik Cunningham is an explosive dual threat quarterback out of Park Crossing HS in Montgomery, Alabama. His senior year, he lead Park Crossing HS to a 13-1 record, with their lone loss coming in the state semifinal game. During that season, he threw for almost 3,000 yards while rushing for over 1,000 yards. Through the air, he threw 30 touchdowns to 8 interceptions, while on the ground he ran for 19 touchdowns while fumbling the ball only once. Essentially, if you need a touchdown, let Malik Cunningham work his magic. He is precisely the kind of explosive playmaker that Bobby Petrino loves, and has shades of Lamar Jackson in his game. Him and Tre’Sean Smith were very active and vocal during the recruiting cycle in getting fellow recruits to come check out Louisville.

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Louisville Among Top Offenses In 2017

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Bleacher Report released their top 20  list of college football offenses for the 2017. No surprise that the schools near the top have Heisman candidates on their teams. What do they think about Louisville? Here is some of what they said,” Last season’s late collapse by Louisville could go one of two ways: First, it could mean college defenses around the country are learning how to scheme star quarterback Lamar Jackson. Or, it could mean Jackson spent this offseason working on diversifying his skill set to improve.

If it’s option B, the rest of the college football world should be scared.”

I’m going with option B. Here is the full list in this tweet below  Read the rest of this entry

Nunnsense: 5 Defensive Newcomers That Can Make An Impact In 2017

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Photo: Courier-Journal

The defense last season was very good until the last 3 games. Ultimately, it may have cost Todd Grantham his job. With Grantham gone there will be a lot of changes on the defensive side of the ball. Losing the NFL talent of DeAngelo Brown, Keith Kelsey, Josh-Harvey Clemons and Devonte Fields is also another concern but can be an opportunity for some of the newcomers. Here are 5 guys that could make an immediate impact in the 2017 season. Read the rest of this entry

Former Tennessee RB Jalen Hurd To Visit UofL

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According to Scout.com, former leading Tennessee Volunteers rusher Jalen Hurd will be paying a visit to the University of Louisville this weekend.

Hurd has also paid visits to Ohio State and California. He was on pace to become Tennessee’s all time leading rusher, until a falling out with his coach Butch Davis spurned his decision to transfer schools. He is also looking to switch positions at wherever school he chooses.

7 UofL Players Receive Invites To NFL Combine

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According to the official list of 2017 NFL Combine participants, 7 Louisville players have received an invite to this year’s edition of the NFL’s predraft combine. Surprisingly, DeAngelo Brown was not one of the players invited. Those invited are listed down below:

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Spring Game Date Announced

 

Photo: nytimes.com

Photo: nytimes.com

Dates for Spring practices and Spring Game announced. Read the rest of this entry

A Tale Of Two Cultures

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Some people will do everything and ignore anything just to keep slandering your name.

Like most Louisville fans and supporters, I’ve reached a point where I’ve just grown tired of constantly hearing about UK fan Katina Powell and that whole scandal. We know that there was a grad assistant that paid for strippers/dancers for recruits and players. We know that Rick Pitino had an extramarital affair in the past. We know that Bobby Petrino also did the same thing, even if he wasn’t even our coach at the time. We know about Porcini. We know about the motorcycle. We know.

How do we know? Well, we have our good friends at all facets of the national sports media to always be there and remind us. Everyone from ESPN, to CBS Sports, to FS1, and so on and so forth reminding us nearly every time Louisville takes the court of all the acts that went down in Minardi Hall, with every single mention of it being followed up by vehement criticism. We have the likes of Michael Rosenberg crafting slam pieces with obvious negative bias. Even as recent as last night, we have people like Jay Williams criticizing Louisville’s culture simply because a player missed curfew.

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Cardinals In The NFL: 2016 Season In Review

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The NFL’s 2016 season saw action from 22 former Louisville Cardinals on 15 different teams, with at least one player representing each position in football. The 2016 NFL Draft also felt the Louisville Cardinals’ presence, with the selection of Sheldon Rankins with the 12th overall pick. The Bills, Steelers and Jets feature multiple former Cards on their rosters, with the Steelers having 2 and both the Bills & Jets having 4 (The Bears also had multiple prior to Greg Scruggs being waived). 3 postseason teams have former Cards on their rosters (Steelers, Dolphins, Patriots), as well as the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (Greg Scruggs).

(Click more for all players)

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National Signing Day Analysis

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Yesterday, Louisville signed one of its top recruiting classes in the football program’s history. With a Heisman Trophy winner, new offensive line coach and defensive coordinator, there’s a lot of buzz surrounding Louisville’s 2017 season. Who else is buzzworthy from this year’s recruiting class?

(Click on more below for the breakdown)

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National Signing Day 2017

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Total Recruits
Offense: 11
Defense: 10
Special Teams: 1

Class Ranking
Scout: 31st
Rivals: 27th
24/7: 32nd

(Click on their names below for a breakdown of each player)

Offense

Quarterbacks:

Malik Cunningham

Skill Positions:

Colin Wilson (RB)

Justin Marshall (WR)

Corey Reed (WR)

Josh Johnson (WR)

Kemari Averett (TE)

Offensive Line:

Mekhi Becton (OT)

Ronald Rudd (OT)

Toryque Bateman (OT)

Caleb Chandler (OG)

Cole Bentley (OG)

Defense

Front Seven:

Malik Clark (OLB)

Dorian Etheridge (OLB)

Kam Jones (ILB)

Secondary:

Kaheem Roach (CB)

Russ Yeast (CB)

CJ Avery (S)

Anthony Johnson (S)

Lyn Strange (S)

TreSean Smith (S)

Rodney Owens (S)

Special Teams

Long Snapper:

Mitch Hall

Malik Cunningham Signs His NLI With UofL

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Malik Cunningham

Quarterback
6’0″, 187 lbs
Montgomery, AL

Scout: 3*
Rivals: 4*
24/7: 3*

Other Schools of Interest: LSU

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Ronald Rudd Signs His NLI With UofL

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Ronald Rudd

Offensive Tackle (JUCO)
6’7″, 308 lbs
Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Scout: 3*
Rivals: 3*
24/7: 3*

Other Schools of Interest: UCLA, Arizona State

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Mekhi Becton Signs his NLI With UofL

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Mekhi Becton

Offensive Tackle
6’7″, 300 lbs
Highland Springs, VA

Scout: 3*
Rivals: 3*
24/7: 3*

Also had offers from Michigan, Virginia Tech, FSU & Oregon

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Justin Marshall Signs His NLI With UofL

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Justin Marshall

Wide Receiver
6’2″, 189 lbs
Conyers, GA

Scout: 3*
Rivals: 4*
24/7: 3*

Other Schools of Interest: South Carolina, Nebraska

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