Game Day: Louisville vs. Cincinnati

LOUISVILLE CARDINALS (3-2) vs. CINCINNATI BEARCATS (2-3)

Game Time: 8:00

Location: Papa John's Cardinal Stadium: Louisville, KY

Television: ESPN

Announcers: Joe Tessitore/Rod Gilmore

Favorite: Cincinnati by 3

All-Time Series: Cincinnati leads 28-20-1

Statistical Comparison (Louisville listed second)

Scoring Offense (Points/Game) 29.4 31.4
Scoring Defense (Points/Game) 19.8 19.0
Total Offense (Yards/Game) 416.4 461.4
Total Defense (Yards/Game) 352.4 329.4
Rushing Offense (Yards/Game) 178.6 218.0
Rushing Defense (Yards/Game) 84.8 147.6
Passing Offense (Yards/Game) 237.8 243.4
Passing Defense (Yards/Game) 267.6 181.8
Turnovers (Takeaways/Giveaways) 5/8 7/9
Sacks (For/Allowed) 10/19 18/6
3rd Down Conv. (For/Against) 39%/34% 38%/26%
Time of Possession (Per Game) 27:50 30:4

 

Last Ten Meetings

Nov. 6, 1999 (A) 23-13
Oct. 14, 2000 (H) 38-24
Oct. 27, 2001 (A) 28-13
Nov. 7, 2002 (H) 14-24
Nov. 28, 2003 (A) 43-40
Nov. 27, 2004 (H) 70-7
Oct. 15, 2005 (A) 46-22
Oct. 14, 2006 (H) 23-17
Oct. 13, 2007 (A) 28-24
Nov. 14, 2008 (H) 20-28
Oct. 24, 2009 (A) 10-41

 

Notable Cardinal Numbers in the Series

5: interceptions, tied for the most in a single-game 1989-present (1989)
5: second most touchdowns passes in a single game 1989-present (1998, 1990)
5: receiving touchdowns by Anthony Cummings, the most in school history (1990)
9: second highest number of touchdowns scored in a game 1989-present (2004)
12: number of games in which the winning team was victorious by a touchdown or less
15: receptions by Arnold Jackson, tied for the most in all-time school history (1999)
67: passing attempts; the most in a game 1989-present (1997)
70: most points scored by a single team in the series' history; U of L racked up 70 at home (2004)
98: offensive plays, the most in a single game 1989-present (1997)
136: yards rushing by T.J. Patterson (2001)
147: yards rushing by Calvin Price (1977)
154: punt return yards, the most in a single game from 1989-present (1997)
158: yards rushing by Eric Shelton (2004)
194: yards receiving by Deion Branch, tied for the fourth-most in all-time school history (2000)
357: second-highest total of rushing yards in a single game 1989-present (2004)
460: passing yards, the seventh-highest total in a single game 1989-present (1997)
742: total offensive yards, the most in a single game from 1989-present (1997)

Last Meeting: Cincinnati won 41-10

Excitement Level: 7.45

Split the difference between what my excitement level would be if I could go to the game and what it is even with having to go to this wedding. Also, if you didn't know, there's a friggin' keg of friggin' nails at stake.

Pregame Meal: Alcohol (if this isn't open bar then applications for a new Ms. CC will commence at approximately 9:34 p.m. EST) and wedding food.

Game Attire: Dress clothes

Yes, I'm 26 and still refer to what I have to wear to weddings as "dress clothes." The now 3-0 gray Louisville football shirt is dirty, but will still be donned underneath it all. There's symbolism in this equation somewhere. Don't ask me to find it.

Bold Prediction: Darius Ashley intercepts his second pass of the season

Predicted Star of the Game: Bilal Powell

There has to be a bump in the road at some point, but I simply don't see him slowing down this evening.

NOTABLE

--Cincinnati is 12-9-1 in games against the Cardinals played in Louisville.

--A win over the Bearcats, would give the Cardinals their first three-game winning streak since the 2008 season. They would also be 4-2 for the first time since that '08 season.

--Louisville has allowed just one fourth quarter touchdown all season.

--The Cards are outscoring opponents 92-28 in the second quarter.

--Cincinnati players don't know how to properly handle the keg of nails.

--Cincinnati has consistently (at least over the past four years) held that they own one less victory in the series than Louisville says they do. According to U of L, the series stands at 28-21-1 in favor of the Bearcats. The folks at UC, however, say it's 27-21-1. Amazingly, both programs agree that tonight marks the 50th meeting between the two.

--UC’s rushing defense (84.8 ypg) leads the BIG EAST and ranks eighth nationally.

--Cincy RB Isaiah Pead has logged 366 yards rushing in the past two games, ranking second nationally and leading the BIG EAST with a 9.8 yards per carry average.

--Bearcat WR DJ Woods sits atop the BIG EAST Conference ledger in both receptions per game (5.8) and receiving yards per game (97.8). He has set career receiving highs in two of the last three games with his yardage totals of 146 (at NC State) and 171 (vs. Oklahoma), respectively.

--SPECIAL TEAMS STATS:

Louisville's Vic Anderson averages 30.8 yards per kick return with a long of 67 yards. Josh Bellamy returns punts at a 10.8-yard clip. The Bearcats' D.J. Woods seems to be improving in returning both kickoffs and punts, ranking in the middle of the Big East pack in both categories. Louisville kicker Chris Philpott has made five of six field goal attempts this year and 10 of his last 11 overall, with a long of 46 yards. On 29 kickoffs, he has 11 touchbacks. UC's Jake Rogers is 5-for-7 on field goal attempts with a long kick of 48 yards. UC's Pat O'Donnell ranks fourth in the league with a 42.5-yard punt average and Louisville's Josh Bleser is seventh at 40.9.

--As of 2009, there are no nails in the Keg of Nails, nor does anyone know if there ever were any in the first place.

--Cincinnati will unveil their new TechFit jerseys from adidas on Friday night. Louisville will not.

--Despite dropping two straight, Louisville has taken 9 of the last 12 meetings with Cincinnati.

--Louisville has not won their Big East opener since beating Cincinnati 23-17 in 2006.

--Cincinnati's current 12-game Big East winning streak is the third longest in conference history.

Quotable

--"We don't talk about it at all. Not once has it come up that a 12-game conference winning streak is on the line. That's the past. The only thing we can focus on is the now." --UC head coach Butch Jones

--"I think Louisville has gotten a lot better. But it doesn't matter what opponent we're playing. As long as Cincinnati comes out and plays ball and has the effort and passion that they want to win the game, I think we'll win each and every week." --UC center Jason Kelce

--"Nobody's really jumped up and taken the lead like 'this is the best team.' There's a couple of teams that are playing pretty good, but at the same time if we feel like we go out there and put our best effort, go out there and execute like we did last week, we feel like we can go out there and play and beat anybody." --Adam Froman

--"They're (Louisville) playing harder. Last year they were probably in a little bit of disarray. They just seemed like they weren't as motivated. When you watch film on them now they're flying around out there, they're hitting guys. They're doing a lot of different things on defense. You can just tell there's more energy with their team overall." --UC tight end Ben Guidugli

--"We quit last year." --Adam Froman

--"They (Cincinnati) have a very potent offense. Look what they did to Oklahoma's defense. They went up and down the field on those guys. As a defensive coach, you don't want it to be a shootout, but you look at the statistics and it could be." --Vance Bedford

--"When you watch them on film, their talent sticks out at you and they have our attention. I love Bellamy. He's explosive." --Butch Jones

"I don't feel we're getting the respect that maybe we should have, that we've earned. So it's kind of edgy. You don't want to go into your next Big East game 0-1 in the Big East, especially after being defending champs. It would hurt. You've got to win this game." --UC running back Isaiah Pead

"It's a big game because they (players) made it a big game. Our players made it a big game the way they worked, the way they played the last few weeks." --Charlie Strong

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