It may not have been pretty, the Cards may not have covered the spread, but the Louisville Cardinals bounced back from Monday’s loss and defeated the Miami Hurricanes 71-66.
With just over 10 minutes to play in the first half, Louisville found themselves in a 14-point hole. They’d go on to cut that lead in half by halftime, ending the first segment of play down 33-26. The Cardinals trailed most of the second half until a 13-0 run pushed them ahead of the Canes 61-53 with 3:59 to play. The Canes answered with an 8-0 run of their own to tie the score 61-61 with 1:56 left but a couple free throws and a big time 3 by the Louisville native Quentin Snider gave the Cards a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
After nearly a week long break from Monday’s shorthanded loss at Virginia, the Cards are back in action today by hosting Miami at 2pm on ESPN.
Today, Louisville will have 3 of the 4 players they sorely missed on Monday, Quentin Snider returns from his hip injury that sidelined him for 6 games and Mangok Mathiang and Deng Adel are both back after serving their 1-game suspension for missing curfew. Tony Hicks still has some recovering to do, but the Cards are getting everyone back at the right time.
The No. 4 Louisville Cardinals travel to Virginia to take on the No. 12 Cavaliers tonight at 7pm on ESPN, in a game that’s sure to be a low-scoring offensive struggle.
It’s no secret that Virginia has had their way with the Cards since Louisville entered the ACC. Many people go as far to say that Tony Bennett is Rick Pitino’s kryptonite when comes to these head-to-head matchups. No one fully knows why, but it’s painfully obvious Louisville struggles against the patented-Virginia Packline defense. Louisville has yet to score 60 points against Virginia during their time in the ACC and only has 1 win against the Cavaliers. Add in injuries to Quentin Snider and Tony Hicks, along with suspensions for Mangok Mathiang and Deng Adel, and now you’ve got a historically struggle of a game with only 7 scholarship players.
In yet another unpredictable day of this college basketball season, the No. 6 Louisville Cardinals remained consistent. The Cardinals traveled to Boston College and defeated the Eagles 90-67.
While play may have gotten sloppy to end the first half and open the second, the Cardinals controlled the outcome the whole way. Led by Donovan Mitchell and Deng Adel’s 19 points each, both on 7-10 shooting, another great offensive performance by Mangok Mathiang with 16 points, along with freshman V.J. King’s 11 points a Louisville victory was never in doubt.
This time last year, the Louisville Cardinals were gearing up to host No. 2 and eventual National Runner-Up North Carolina. A win over the Tarheels would’ve been the signature win that team needed. They had talent, leadership, and were widely considered as one of the most enjoyable Louisville teams to watch in recent memory. All they lacked was a marquee win.
It started with an aggressive drive capped off by a thunderous one-handed slam from senior grad-student transfer and crowd favorite Damion Lee. He’d finish with a game-high 24 points, and would lead the Cardinals to their recognition-earning win. The city, fans, and team expressed their elation all night and into the next morning. Then, everything changed.
The No. 13 Louisville Cardinals took care of business today by handling the NC State Wolfpack a 25-point loss with a final score of 85-60.
Louisville took the lead 11-9 with 16:35 left in the 1st half and never looked back. Donovan Mitchell led the Cards in scoring with 28 points, rebounds with 8, and assists with 5. Mangok Mathiang continued his impressive play off the bench with 14 points. Deng Adel added 10 points and VJ King chipped in 9 points to go along with 7 rebounds.
It was an all-around impressive effort from the Cards today. They held Dennis Smith Jr. to 8 points (11.6 below his season average of 19.6 PPG). They moved the ball well, hounded the Wolfpack on defense, and asserted their dominance.
In a week of upsets and wild finishes, the Cards went 2-0 with wins by 55 and 25 points. With all the teams up top that lost this week, the Cards could make an appearance in the top-5 when the new rankings are released.
Up next, Louisville travels to Boston College for a 3pm game on Saturday, the game can be seen on the ACC Network.
Highlights from the ACC Digital Network:
Head Coach Rick Pitino
In an all-around team effort, the No. 11 Cardinals took care of business at home against the visiting Salukis from Southern Illinois. The Cardinals went into halftime up 37-26 and the second half scoring was almost identical with the Cardinals outscoring the Salukis 37-25 for a final score of 74-51. While Louisville shot well from the field overall (45.8%), their 3-point percentage (23.5% on 4-17) and their free throw percentage (61.5% on 16-26) left much to be desired. Those two categories have to improve for the Cardinals or else the upcoming schedule will prove to be more difficult than already anticipated. As anticipated the Cardinals took advantage of the height difference out-rebounding the Salukis 43 to 31, which included 13 offensive rebounds. Two more bright spots were the assists to made basket percentage (48%) and the 9 total blocks (which, again can be attributed to the height difference).
The Cardinals were led in scoring by Mangok Mathiang (yes, you read that correctly), who scored 15 points on an efficient 6-9 from the field. Deng Adel finished with a double-double of 12 points and 12 rebounds. Jaylen Johnson almost had another double-double as well, he finished with 9 points and 10 rebounds. Matz Stockman saw an increase in playing time and made the most of it, he went 3-4 with 7 points in 16 minutes.
Up next, the Cardinals host Texas Southern on Saturday at 2pm. As long as Louisville keeps their focus on the opponent in front of them, the Battle for the Bluegrass should feature two Top-10 teams for just the 6th time since the rivalry was renewed in 1983.
Here is the podcast from Saturday’s edition of the Cardinal Sports Zone on 93.9 The Ville. Your host Steve Rummage was in the house alongside the Social Media Extraordinaire, Jeremy Wahman. Today we welcomed BACK Marques Maybin who took some time out of his day to drop knowledge. We talked Football Bowl match-ups, Louisville Basketball vs Grand Canyon (INSANE ENVIRONMENT) plus we asked: How many games out of a four game stretch (UVa,uk,IU,ND) would you give up to ensure a uk win? Great response from you guys on that one. We had a great time yesterday! We were #Blessed to have Brian Hall in the booth as well producing the heat. If you missed it earlier then you MUST check it out now! The Cardinal Sports Zone show is brought to you by JB’S Pub on Central alongside of Doug Budd at Red Edge Realty and.
(Click more for Podcast)
Here is the podcast from Saturday’s edition of the Cardinal Sports Zone on 93.9 The Ville. Your host Steve Rummage was in the house alongside the Social Media Savant (I’m gonna make it a thing) Jeremy Wahman. Today we welcomed in resident College Basketball expert Perrin Johnson. After the Thursday night we had the soothing sounds of PJ were needed. Great but weird song choices by Perrin too. We talked Houston Heartbreak, Bowl destinations, Pitino & the squad, Kanye & much more. We were #Blessed to have the Magic Mike in the booth as well producing the heat. If you missed it earlier then you MUST check it out now! The Cardinal Sports Zone show is brought to you by JB’S Pub on Central alongside of Doug Budd at Red Edge Realty and.
(Click more for Podcast)
The Louisville Basketball Team improved their early season ranking after their win against Evansville by moving up 1 spot in the polls from No. 13 to No. 12. Tonight at 7pm ET, the Cards host William & Mary, the game can be seen on Fox Sports South. William & Mary is not a team to be overlooked, the Tribe won their first game of the season by significant margin of 52 points as the final score read 96-44 over Bridgewater (no relation to Teddy). As it stands, Louisville is currently a 17.5 point favorite tonight which isn’t discrediting the Cards, William & Mary is just a much better team than most will give them credit for due to the lack of the big name.
Obviously, the stats are only from one game but in that game William & Mary had 5 scorers in double figures and had 19 team assists on 37 made baskets. Although, the Tribe is a team I can see as a mid-major conference champion when March comes around, I think the length and athleticism of Louisville will be too much. Expect the Tribe to hang around early, but at the under 12:00 timeout the Cards come out and put the game out of reach. Louisville 83 William & Mary 59.
It’s Friday. I don’t want to post 5 different stories that you have to read on a Friday afternoon. You are welcome. Here is a summary of today’s events or what we at CSZ like to call the Cardinal Catch-Up.
- It was reported late last night that Mango would not return this season from his foot injury. Today Rick Pitino told us that he would not apply for a medical redshirt.
- Rick also told us that he encouraged Chinanu Onuaku to test out the new draft camp rules. Here is how that made Steve feel:
Buckle up…here we go! Louisville (17-3, 6-1) is about to enter a crazy stretch of basketball games against ranked teams, with a little Boston College thrown in there for good balance. It starts today as the Virginia Cavaliers (16-4, 5-3) are in town and trying to stay in the ACC race. Usually when there are games on Saturday and Monday, they are paired together in the minds of fans. Well, this pair is Virginia and North Carolina, a huge two-game set for the Cards.
Monday could be one of the best atmospheres that the KFC Yum! Center has seen, but let’s not jump ahead of today yet. This could be an awesome game. Enjoy it. Here are some quick notes on the game. Has to be quick so I can go do some CSZ radio on 93.9 The Ville from 10-11, which you should check out!
Rick Pitino met with the media on Friday afternoon to preview Saturday’s game against Virginia. Video and transcript below.
Video from TheCrunchZone.com
It’s a big weekend, obviously, with two highly ranked teams and well-coached teams coming in here. What (Virginia) just did to Wake Forest was interesting to say the least. We’re coming off a very good road swing where we — the second game — played probably our worst defensive outing of the year. But I think that had a lot to do with the officiating for both teams. That’s what’s happening in college basketball. That’s why the scoring is up the same way it was in the NBA. Players have to get used to the offensive player banging into you to create fouls, and they’ve got to get used to drawing offensive fouls and holding your plane. The NBA had to get used to it and now the college has to get used to it. That’s why scoring is up because more free throws are being shot.
Q: Do you like the way it’s being called?
If you don’t like this team, well then I just don’t have many words for you. After the UofL women destroyed Clemson on Thursday night, Trey Lewis and Mangok Mathiang made an unexpected appearance at the podium. Just another example of how these guys really get along and like each other. Team chemistry is important folks. These guys have it!
PITINO: Well, I’ll tell you basically what I tell the team is basically buckle your seat belts because it’s gonna be one helluva ride in the ACC. It reminds me so much of the Big East in its prime in terms of, you know, you see it going one way, then all of a sudden you see now you have Virginia and Clemson near the top, you see Georgia Tech playing real well. Syracuse looks like they’re out of it, now they get hot. Duke loses three, Virginia loses three and then suddenly the thing’s upside down, and then it will turn back. It will be a roller coaster ride that will drive fans and coaches crazy, but it will be a lot of fun playing this type of competition, needless to say.
Q: Is it even more unpredictable than you thought going in?