Every two years, the University of Louisville football teams heads to Tampa to take on the South Florida Bulls with increasingly bad results:
2005: Total WTF game, USF destroys Brohm, Bush, Mario, etc. 45-14. CardsFan922's streak of bad luck watching UofL games at BW3s on Bardstown Road continues (2004 @Marquette, 2004 Renardo Foster tears ACL)
2007: Treat Guy fumbled the opening kick-off for a USF TD and it went down hill from there. This is the only video evidence I could find of the 55-17 beat down:
So bad things seem to happen in South Florida, for some reason.
But the past doesn't matter, and this will be one of the weaker USF teams to welcome us to Tampa. And the Cards defense has quietly put together defensive scores of 13 (Ark. State), 17 (WVU) and 9 (Syracuse) in the last three weeks. Do we have a shot? Will Froman do a Groethe impression? Also, please note that in the simulated season, BJ Daniels was the starting QB. And we win tomorrow 30-3. We here at CardChron headquarters don't know if the fact the season was right about the first means it will be right about the second.
So what do we know about tomorrow?
According to the Courier-Journal, Adam Froman was mentally there even if he wasn't physically 100%, and they almost put Will Stein into the game against Syracuse. The decision not to proved prescient (your move, Heiser) as Froman led them on the winning TD drive:
"You could tell he was a little rusty," Kragthorpe said. "But he made some nice plays for us off the scrambles. He can make some plays with his feet. He'll be fine."
Coaches considered pulling Froman from the game, but as quarterbacks coach Matt Wells said: "He was so into it mentally."
"If he wouldn't have been there mentally, we would have probably made a change, but he wasn't missing anything mentally," Wells said. "I expect him to come back and play at a high, high level this week."
USF's 9th Year Senior Carlton Mitchell (seriously, how long has that guy been there?) will apparently be healthy enough to play tomorrow, says the Trib:
University of South Florida WR Carlton Mitchell (ankle) is probable for Saturday's game against Louisville.
Mitchell missed last week's game at Rutgers after suffering a high ankle sprain against West Virginia on Oct. 30.
"He's going to dress for the game," USF coach Jim Leavitt said. "How much he plays depends on how well he feels. He's getting close."
Mitchell, who showed no signs of being limited as he sprinted off the practice field Thursday, leads USF with 29 receptions for 542 yards, four touchdowns and 14 years of eligibility.
Part of that quote is altered from the original. Can you guess which?
That same link summarizes the pre-game story lines in a nutshell: bowl-eligibility on the line, as long as they don't turn the ball over:
he Bulls (6-3, 2-3 Big East) can become bowl eligible with a win against Louisville (4-6, 1-4). On paper, that shouldn't be a problem as USF is an 11 1/2 -point favorite.
Turnovers, however, are the big equalizer. Through nine games, USF has committed 18 turnovers, but half (nine) have come in its three losses.
"You just can't turn the football over," offensive coordinator Mike Canales said. "That's been the demise of us."
USF has won only once since Oct. 3, but in that game (a 30-19 win against WVU), the Bulls were turnover-free.
USF better be careful, or Jim Leavitt will scare the bulls--t out of them at halftime:
The Bulls not only got trampled on the field, but also ESPN's A-team announcing crew had little good to say about the Bulls once the game got out of reach.
Even before the second half started and USF trailing 13-0, ESPN sideline reporter Erin Andrews provided a glimpse of the atmosphere around the Bulls.
"It was very loud, very intense, and very scary in there," Andrews reported someone told her of Coach Jim Leavitt's halftime speech.
Anyone who would like to volunteer to comfort EA as part of the D.E.N.N.I.S. system please leave your contact information for her in the comments.
So we face a USF team who was just humiliated on national television, who faces Miami in the Game of the Century next week on ABC at 3:30 PM, and we face them in a place we've never beaten them.