Brief and belated Cincinnati thoughts

1. Very cool to watch Louisville playing in an NFL stadium, even one that's not especially close to being filled to capacity. I'd like to see it happen more...the playing in an NFL stadium, not the playing in an NFL stadium that's not especially close to being filled to capacity.

2. Cincinnati fans: unsurprisingly less welcoming and less disinterested than North Carolina fans. Also less cool. I'd say worse dressers, but that's a subjective thing.

3. I've heard a lot of complaining about the call to throw the ball on 3rd and goal from the 1. We've been stopped far too many times on short-yardage situations for me to take issue with the call. The biggest problem was Teddy throwing the ball away when it looked like he had a pretty easy opportunity to run it in for the score.

4. The only call I really hated was the 2nd and 1 pass when we were driving down 22-16 in the fourth quarter. You know how hard it's been for the offense to move the ball, you know weak our O-line has been up the middle and you know how bad we've been on third and medium. With all this in mind, I don't see how you can call a pass with Teddy lined up under center. Run the ball, move the chains, and let's keep momentum.

5. Awesome to see Chris Philpott bounce back and prove the bold prediction to be correct at the same time.

6. We've all seen Dominique Brown's potential, but the fact that he's still learning how to play the running back position is equally apparent. There were a number of occasions on Saturday where he missed some pretty obvious holes, or stutter-stepped instead of running through them.

7. I didn't think there was any way we could hold those guys under 28 points. A major tip of the cap to the defense, especially the secondary. We didn't do it all with pressure. There were multiple times where Collaros had all day to throw and couldn't find anyone open. Another very bright sign for the future.

8. Our lack of a big-play threat at the receiver position continues to be disappointing. Eli Rogers is certainly coming on strong, but we saw on the giant pass reception, he doesn't have breakway speed. I'm still surprised that Josh Bellamy hasn't a bigger year. We definitely need a healthy DeVante.

9. Charlie Strong (and Titus Teague) jumping around with the defense in the 4th quarter was pretty cool. The 50-yard Isaiah Pead touchdown that happened two plays later was less cool.

10. I'm not even going to deny having crazy thoughts when the score was 16-7...OK, it was actually 3-0 the first time I brought up going to the BCS. I couldn't help it. The Carmody jersey leading us through a magical Big East run was too much of a dream to hold down.

11. I know we're 2-4, but I can't let go of the fact that this doesn't look anything like the bad U of L teams of the past. These guys play hard and the fact that there is a lot of talent on the field is always apparent. They just don't seem to play with a lot of confidence, and never show anything remotely close to a killer instinct. That's something that will definitely change in the future, but it's something that needs to change now if these guys want to give their senior class a bowl game to go out on.

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