Louisville smokes Arkansas 96-66 in season-opener

The Louisville basketball team has played one game and their margin of victory in that contest - played against an SEC opponent away from home - is more than double the combined margin of victory of their football counterpart's three D-1 victories. Scoring lots of points and winning by lots of points is fun, and I remember that now.

The ball is bouncing once again in the Derby City.

So I'm not sure who started at the four for Louisville last night. He looked like Jared Swopshire, he even wore his number, but he didn't play anything like the Swop we've seen for the past 12 months.

Maybe it was playing in front of friends and family in St. Louis, but Swop looked about 20 times more confident than he ever has at any point in his brief Cardinal career. He made smart and bold decisions with the ball in his hands, knocked down open shots and came down with contested rebounds over some pretty big boys.

I've stated on here multiple times that Swop is at least a year away from being a solid Big East forward, and while I still doubt his ability to do a lot of what he did last night against the likes of Connecticut and West Virginia, if he can play at the level he displayed then he absolutely deserves a spot in the starting lineup.

A friend I took in the game with summed things up quite well at one point in the second half: "Swop just looks...cooler."

Reggie Delk again confirmed his status as the least predictable Louisville basketball player of all-time by burying 4-of-5 treys and scoring 20 points. He also did a tremendous job when he was assigned to Rotnei Clarke.

I thought before the season that Delk's performance would be a huge factor in how the season turned out, and while I don't feel nearly as strongly about that statement as I once did, it's an enormous lift when he's knocking down open shots, snatching rebounds and doing all of the other little things that players with his athleticism can do.

Pitino has talked about Delk being a guy whose performance is dictated largely by his confidence level, and if that's the case then last night may have been even more important than it appeared on the surface.

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He didn't shoot the ball particularly well but I thought Edgar Sosa put together a nice game. He made a couple of poor decisions early but still finished with a team-high seven assists and turned it over only twice.

Sosa is this team's point guard and he will be for the entire season.

Even with Delk's big night, I love the three-guard starting lineup. Sosa, Knowles and Smith look extremely comfortable on the floor together and produced an assist-to-turnover ratio of 18:4 last night. I still wouldn't be surprised if Jennings replaces Swop in the starting five at some point, but I think the three-guard lineup is here to stay. As it should be.

The Big East is 29-0 right now. That's quite ridiculous.

What do you think the odds are of the entire league being without a loss come Selection Sunday? It's gonna be tough, but I think we've got a shot.

This will be the 9,674th time someone has said this in the past calendar year, but Samardo Samuels has simply got to turn himself into a better rebounder. Last night he was consistently out of position, he was out-muscled and he bobbled multiple boards he should have come up with cleanly. Granted, he was going up against a future first round NBA Draft pick, but without T-Will and Earl Clark, four boards simply isn't going to cut it.

No token photo. Get off your ass, AP photogs.

Apparently there were some network-wide problems that made CC impossible to access for a period during the game last night. In order to make amends, I'm going to go ahead and make all of our content free and open to the public.

You're welcome.

Jerry's excited about the season.

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Seriously, can one guy be cooler?

Peyton Siva's and-one was highlight worthy, but he appeared a bit overanxious when the ball was in his hands and struggled to keep his man in front of him on defense. Still, he's a high school All-American with ridiculous potential who doesn't mind waiting his turn as long as his team is winning. 

We love you, Peyton. We love you a lot .

A Big East football win and a 30-point victory over an SEC opponent in the basketball season-opener in the span of four days. It's safe to say Cardwear Sporting Dog is legit.

When Preston buried the no-hesitation three on the first possession of the season, the urge I had to take my pants off was at a March '09 level.

Anyone else have an extremely strong desire to chug Bud Light and pound Reese's Cups after watching that game? I wonder what that was all about.

Rotnei Clarke is really good and we did an outstanding job on him last night. He has as pure a stroke as there is in college basketball and is actually much better at creating his own shot than I thought he was. Kudos to Knowles and Delk for keeping him under 20.

How pissed do you think the two Razorbacks on the end of the bench are that the guy from the golf team plays more than them?

On a related note, I have a friend - who shall again remain anonymous in order to protect him from becoming Louisville's biggest social pariah - who had the gumption to yell "fore" when the golfer missed a free-throw. If that wasn't bad enough, he later admitted that he'd been waiting to use the joke for the better part of the night.

Robert Daniel Sinnard of St. Matthews, the world weeps for you and all you come in contact with.

Mike Marra really needs to make a shot. Just one.

Keep shooting, my man.

How about Chris Brickley's take? That was insanely confident and well-executed.

It was equally awesome to see Sosa, his roommate, going nuts on the bench.

It's really cool to watch how much these guys genuinely like each other.

Ninety-six points, 15 threes, 25 assists, 16 turnovers forced, 30-point win, basketball season.

I'm crying because I'm happy.

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