Louisville Starts March To Atlanta With Blowout Of North Carolina A&T

Andy Lyons

Unlike the last time Louisville was the NCAA Tournament's No. 1 overall seed, there were no uneasy moments for the Cards on Thursday night in Rupp Arena.

Paced by Russ Smith's 23 points and eight steals, U of L dominated North Carolina A&T in a game they never trailed. Wayne Blackshear chipped in 12 points, while Peyton Siva notched eight assists and four steals. As a team, Louisville recorded 20 steals and turned the Aggies over 25 times.

Additional notes:

--Dark Slime received a standing ovation inside Rupp Arena tonight. That is all.

--Chane Behanan told Kent Taylor earlier in the day that he thought the game would be a "dunk fest." He then proceeded to record an offensive goaltend and embarrassingly blow a breakaway dunk in the game's first 10 minutes. Pump the breaks on the pregame talk, my man.

--Denny and the bird mask:

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--Montrezl Harrell is one of the five coolest people on the planet.

--Stephan Van Treese's first NCAA Tournament stat line: four points, two dunks and seven rebounds in 19 minutes.

--Four down, five to go.

Much more coming later.

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