Short answer - Yes, Yes, No and Hope So.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The writings & musings of Jeff Nunn do not necessarily reflect those of CSZ.
On Saturday, we will honor our senior class that has won 32 games over a four-year span and will make its fourth-straight appearance in a bowl game. The game against Syracuse at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium is set for a 3:30 kick off and the seniors will be honored prior to the game. Louisville officially announced that a total of 14 seniors will walk on to their home field for the final time as a player. I hope that every fan gets in their seat early to show their appreciation for these student athletes. Also, during the game, former University of Louisville quarterback Stefan LeFors will become the 23rd football player to have his jersey honored.
DC, Peter Sirmon,Trumaine Washington and Isaac Stewart met with the media after practice today.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Louisville’s matchup against traditional power Florida State came at an opportune time – a chance to dispel one path of momentum and travel in the opposite direction.
The Cardinals, behind the foot of Blanton Creque, knocked off the Seminoles 31-28 last week for Louisville’s first win in Tallahassee since 1952. The victory, while significant in historical terms, provided a boost to the Cardinals’ confidence after suffering consecutive setbacks.
While quarterback Lamar Jackson said after the game it was a ‘needed’ victory, Louisville’s defense likely felt a bigger sense of relief.
After allowing an uncharacteristic number of yards to Boston College, Louisville’s defense limited Florida State to 155 yards on the ground and forced three turnovers. Chucky Williams forced a Seminoles’ fumble to start the fourth quarter, and the Cardinals’ defense recovered another loose ball that led to Creque’s game-winning kick. Read the rest of this entry
I made it no secret that I was happy with the departure of defensive coordinator,Todd Grantham. I think he did a good job for most of his tenure but he reached a point where the defense no longer was getting better even with NFL talent. I mean, if I could figure out that he was going to blitz on every third down then so could any division one coach.
I also made it no secret that the hiring of Peter Sirmon was questionable in my opinion. Not because he wasn’t a good coach but the fact that we didn’t know if he was or not. I believe that being a coach at Louisville is no longer a stepping stone job but rather a destination job. Therefore I felt we didn’t need to hire an up and coming young coach who needed to prove himself. We needed to go out and get the best proven guy that we could.
Many people blasted Sirmon from the start because of his stats from his last job at Mississippi State. I decided to reserve judgement and give him a chance to prove himself.
Well, it’s only been six games but I’m seeing trends that I don’t like. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt because he has not had the services of his preseason All-American, Jaire Alexander, due to injury and Drew Bailey has been injured as well. Now linebacker Stacy Thomas is out. But that is all part of it and he needs to make adjustments to play with the personnel he has. Read the rest of this entry
Coach Peter Sirmon and Henry Famurewa spoke with the media after practice on Wednesday.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Henry Famurewa has been waiting patiently to be an asset to the University of Louisville football team.
The Powder Springs, Ga., native arrived on campus in 2014 and appeared in one game – a rout of Murray State. He earned a redshirt the following year, but kept working to attract enough attention from the coaching staff to warrant playing time.
That time came this year and the results are quite evident over the Cardinals’ last two games. Famurewa has totaled eight tackles in that span, including his first career sack in the victory at North Carolina.
“For everything I have been through since I was on campus in 2014, it’s kind of built me and molded me into the person I am today,” Famurewa said. “I’m just happy to be out there playing meaningful snaps and being able to give my team the best chance to win.”
The redshirt junior is not only helping Louisville’s defense set the tone in the trenches, but Famurewa has become an example when the stadium spotlights are off and the cameras are absent.
“He’s demonstrating the ability on the practice field, which is what practice is for – you need to put your player face on and demonstrate ability,” defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon said. “He’s shown that he’s starting to make those plays. He’s being more physical. He’s playing with more effort the last several weeks, and when you do that, you’re going to get more play time.”
After a rocky defensive performance against Clemson, albeit the unit was on the field for more than 35 minutes, Sirmon is getting his group to refocus. Before facing the reigning national champion, the Cardinals’ were one of the top run defenses in the country.
Much of that success is attributed to the defense’s effort.
“Every time they go on the field – effort is mandatory,” Sirmon said. “Effort has to be mandatory, and execution – you see the good teams execute over and over again.”
Fortunately, the Cardinals have obeyed the 24-hour rule and have showed the willingness to move forward. Practices, as head coach Bobby Petrino alluded to on Monday, were not going to be easy heading into Saturday’s matchup against Kent State.
“It’s been a positive attitude,” Famurewa said regarding the spirit of practice. “We continue to focus on getting better on every little thing – technique, running to the ball, communicating – and just getting ready for the next game.”
For Louisville to continue to develop – and excel – on defense, it’s going to come back to giving maximum effort. Defense isn’t always the most glamorous side of football, but the Cardinals’ have a group that is devoted to improving and making each play count.
“Coach Sirmon preaches on effort,” Famurewa said, “so each chance I get in the game – whether it’s one, two, or 10 – I try to give maximum effort and make as many plays as I can.”
The game is over. We lost. Time to lick our wounds and move on. It is not time, however, to start blaming people and second guessing every decision. It’s our jobs as fans to support our team through the ups and downs. Yes, you have the right to voice your opinion and express your frustration – I get it. But is that really helping or is it just giving the optics of a program that lacks full support?
I think we all need to take a step back, take a deep breath and gain a little perspective. This game counts as one loss no matter how bad it hurts. There is no shame in losing to the #3 team in the nation. With any luck, this will be that one game a year that, for unknown reasons, the team doesn’t quite show up. We can still go 11-1 or 10-2 and possibly make the Orange bowl. Read the rest of this entry
Defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon, Trumaine Washington and Dee Smith spoke with the media following today’s practice.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Both Louisville’s and Purdue’s offenses have received plenty of attention ahead of Saturday’s matchup in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Defense Looks to Continue Progress in Upcoming Practices, Saturday’s Scrimmage. Plus Post Practice Interviews
Press Release – LOUISVILLE, Ky. – In the University of Louisville’s first football scrimmage last Saturday, first-year defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon wanted to see his players get to the football and tackle – a key component that’s helped the Cardinals sport a top-25 defense over the last seven seasons.
For the most part, Sirmon and head coach Bobby Petrino were pleased with the results in the team’s first major test under the lights at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. Both coaches came away pleased with the ability to limit big plays and tackling, which were a cause for concern last season.
I had the pleasure of attending U of L football media day and I took my camera. We at CSZ had the privilege of talking with all the coaches and many of the student athletes. We will be posting all the interviews very soon. I can’t seem to put into words what this experience was like, so you can just browse through the pics I snapped and try to get a feel for yourself. I also took a few pics of the progress of Papa John’s Cardinal stadium expansion. I hope you enjoy… Read the rest of this entry
First, let’s start by defining what a big or successful season is. To me I measure success by the win total set by Las Vegas. This year the total is 9 so if we win 9 regular season games then the season is successful. However, early season success often raises our expectations. It shouldn’t but it just does – it’s human nature. * See last season.* Maybe you have a different definition of a successful season and that’s perfectly okay. I love our fans having high expectations. Our goal every season should be nothing less than a national championship but there is absolutely nothing wrong with being happy after a 10 win season. Read the rest of this entry
Adam Rittenberg of ESPN reports “Mississippi State and Louisville are swapping defensive coordinators. Mississippi State announced Todd Grantham will be its new defensive coordinator after three seasons with Louisville. Peter Sirmon is expected to take Grantham’s spot at Louisville after one season as Mississippi State’s defensive coordinator. FootballScoop.com first reported Sirmon’s move to Louisville. Sirmon had been in the mix for Colorado’s defensive coordinator vacancy.”