The best Louisville game of the decade tournament: 5 vs. 12


The Louisville football program's first "signature win" had come more than a decade earlier via a thrashing of Alabama in the Fiesta Bowl, but this was the monumental victory that set the tone for U of L's rise to prominence over the next few years.

In a torrential downpour, the Cardinals - who had already dropped games to Kentucky and Colorado State after entering the year with their highest preseason ranking in history - forced the fourth-ranked and unbeaten Seminoles into overtime.

On the first play of overtime, FSU quarterback Chris Rix had his pass intercepted by U of L free safety Anthony Floyd. One play later, Louisville running back Henry Miller burst through the middle and waltzed into the endzone, inspiring the soldout crowd at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium to storm onto the field and tear down the goal posts.

"They were better than we were," said Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden. "Before the season, I was very concerned about this game because they were playing as good as anybody last season. We simply did not stop them."

Bowden also praised Cardinal quarterback Dave Ragone, who he said was "as good as any quarterback in the country."

"We fed off an unbelievable crowd in a torrential downpour," Ragone said afterward. "They started ripping down the goal posts, ripping off my helmet, ripping off everything."


Desperately needing a signature road-win, the once-struggling '07 Louisville Cardinals found one when freshman Jerry Smith buried a deep three-pointer just before the buzzer to stun No. 12 Marquette in front of a sellout crown in Milwaukee.

The win was especially sweet for Smith, a Wisconsin native who many felt was denied the state's Mr. Basketball honor because of his decision to take his game to Louisville.

"I'm just speechless," said Smith, who played his high school ball at Wauwatosa East. "I could have never dreamed this."

Remarkably, this was the third time in six years that the Cardinals had gone on the road and beaten the rival Golden Eagles with the aid of a made shot in the game's final seconds.

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