Wednesday Afternoon Cardinal News And Notes

Two-month old Hudson is hard at work getting his "C" down for the ACC celebration.

I_medium If the NBA Draft was based on nothing but YouTube videos, Grantland says Russ Smith would be a top 10 pick.

I_medium Speaking of Russ, here's part three of the New York Post's look at his road to the NBA Draft.

I_medium Well then, I'd say this is something to look forward to.

If one of you SOBs made the 400-foot tall, solid gold Gorgui holding a baby statue happen, I'm gonna lose it.

I_medium After an impressive mini-camp, ESPN says you should expect to see Calvin Pryor in the running for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Pryor's head wasn't spinning after his first minicamp. His mouth was running, yes, to the point that second-year quarterback Geno Smith quipped that Pryor had not earned the right to chirp. Yet.

But that is Pryor's nature, and he is a perfect fit for the Jets. Pryor is, as Jets head coach Rex Ryan noted after selecting him, in the mold of Seattle safeties Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas: big, brash, a vicious hitter with range, who is able to blitz from various spots on the field, and an enforcer for the back of the defense.

"It's how we want to play defense," Ryan said at the time, while noting: "Big hits still win games."

Added New York general manager John Idzik: "He just plays like a Jet."

I_medium In the wake of the Luis Suarez incident, Jon Bois would like to remind you that biting other people is bad.

I_medium The Sporting News' Mike DeCourcy has Louisville at No. 7 in his updated early 2014-15 hoops rankings.

Likely strengths: College basketball's gradual descent toward re-enabling physical defense is fabulous news for the Cardinals, who are better at it than most anyone. The Cards were No. 4 in defensive efficiency last season, and that could improve as Mangok Mathiang develops and Montrezl Harrell continues to progress toward stardom. They'll be as difficult to score over as most any frontcourt. Harrell's return to the Cards was unexpected, but immense. Without him they are a high-teens pick. 

Potential weaknesses: The Cardinals were only great offensively last season when Luke Hancock made shots. With Hancock gone, and also All-American Russ Smith, the team will have to find a consistent means of generating points. Coach Rick Pitino rarely (never?) has been one to build an offense from the inside-out, but Harrrell is the team's best player and can score inside and from the foul line. If he's not featured, can Louisville score with the elite? 

Key factor: The days of "Russdiculous" long past, Smith gave the Cards a sense of stability in the backcourt that could be missing if Chris Jones does not learn the same lessons. He had some of the same ability to score in bunches, some of the same tendency toward mental errors. He has not been as adept, however, on D. Jones, soph Terry Rozier and freshman Quentin Snider have enough talent to provide effective backcourt play, but being a guard for Pitino is a full-time job.

I_medium Nick Burdi is officially a Minnesota Twin...or at least officially a well-paid member of the Twins organization.

I_medium Bryan Dobzanski, one of the most highly-touted members of Dan McDonnell's 2014 recruiting class, will pursue professional baseball instead of attending U of L this fall. Dobzanski was selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 29th round of the MLB Draft.

I_medium Louisville has been ranked as the 5th-friendliest city in the United States for small businesses.

I_medium Russ Smith is feeling good about Anton Gill's sophomore season.

It has been both collected and saved.

I_medium Four-star small forward/emoji enthusiast Ray Smith (2015) has Louisville in his list of nine schools.

I_medium State of the U, SB Nation's Miami site, is pretty confident that the Hurricanes will welcome Louisville to the ACC by defeating the Cards on Sept. 1.

The Canes won 9 games last year and fans are expecting a big year, with Duke Johnson and Stacy Coley poised to lead the offense. The defense should be improved this year, with a more experienced secondary and a leader in star LB Denzel Perryman. Unfortunately for Miami, the biggest question mark is at the most important position in football. Who will play QB against Louisville on Labor Day? If Ryan Williams really is ready to play in late September or early October, how will that change the plans of the coaching staff? As a fan that is looking towards the future, I certainly hope to see either Kevin Olsen or Brad Kaaya under center initially. I have to admit to being upset when the Canes took former BYU and Kansas QB Jake Heaps as a transfer earlier in June. I get why it makes sense for depth purposes, but if Heaps somehow starts the opener, I will likely go into a deep depression. That desperate move would make a very negative statement about what the coaching staff thinks of our young talent.


The key to Miami's season is the month of September. The Canes don't have a bye until mid-October, so it's imperative Al Golden and company get off to a strong start. I'm operating under the assumption that Kevin Olsen will emerge as the starter in fall camp. While the atmosphere at Louisville will be intimidating for a first time starter, Olsen will be fortunate to have talented playmakers all around him at the skill positions. Keep in mind UL will also be breaking in a new starting QB in Will Gardner. Get the ball to Duke and Stacy early and often and I think Miami will be fine on that side of the ball. Defensively, I expect UM's players to find motivation in how poorly they played in a blowout loss to Louisville just nine months earlier. That game tape should be playing on an endless loop during the month of August. I expect Miami to beat the Cards and head to Lincoln, NE with a 3-0 record.

I_medium The Louisville volleyball team has released its complete 2014 schedule.

I_medium This place is going to be extremely cool.

I_medium Brian Brohm is set to play the role of backup quarterback in Winnipeg.

I_medium Clemson's 247 site looks at the three programs on its 2014 schedule who will be visiting Death Valley for the first time, one of which you should be overly familiar with.

Louisville

Clemson has never faced Louisville, but with the Cardinals officially joining the ACC, the two teams will square off as ACC Atlantic division foes on October 11th. Bobby Petrino and the Cardinals give Clemson another exciting opponent on the conference slate.

Last season, they knocked off Miami to win the Champs Sports Bowl. This season, they start the season with a Labor Day rematch against the Hurricanes at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. Should they win that opener, they will have a great opportunity to following it with five more wins and enter Death Valley at 6-0.

Louisville fans get out to support basketball, football, and baseball and are competitive across the board. Expect a thrilling game and a great day mingling with a new fan base. Outside of the University of South Carolina, this is one of the most interesting home games on Clemson's home schedule and will likely to continue to be every other year for the foreseeable future.

I_medium The best vine of the summer so far.

I_medium According to a system of advanced stats over at Sactown Royalty, Russ Smith is the 16th-best player available in 2014 NBA Draft.

I_medium Southern Pigskin says football people are overlooking just how big a deal the addition of Louisville is for the ACC.

I_medium I would nap under this.

I_medium Kerry Capps looks at Bobby Petrino's first (new) recruiting class at Louisville, which is heavy on JUCOs.

I_medium And finally, Yahoo says the Keg of Nails is the second-best trophy in all of college football. Good thing it's going to be in Louisville for the foreseeable future.

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